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“More than your average cup of Joe” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Savaya Coffee

Savaya Coffee
Ranked #45 of 60 Coffee & Tea in Tucson
Cuisines: Cafe
Dining options: Breakfast, Seating, Wheelchair Accessible
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Seating, Wheelchair Accessible
Tucson, Arizona
Level Contributor
329 reviews
159 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 205 helpful votes
“More than your average cup of Joe”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 12, 2012

We tried Savaya at La Encantada the other day, after having passed it by a number of times. In fact, after a recent breakfast at one of our favorite restaurants, Jaspers, we headed over to Le Buzz when the "we need good coffee" bug hit us. Savaya at this location is a small shop where they craft each cup. The prices are higher than you would expect... and so is the octane. In general, my mocha was excellent, and I'll come back if I need a latte and I'm in the neighborhood. It's limited selection and lack of ambiance would not make it a primary destination... and it is certainly superior to Starbucks.

  • Visited November 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank LeeMTucson_Arizona
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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20 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    4
    9
    4
    2
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
26 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Spectacularly Great Coffee”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 29, 2012

These people LOVE coffee. We watched them prepare their ice-water drip - a unique cold water coffee that gives you all the flavor and none of the bite. They roast their own gourmet beans, and make a perfect latte. And on top of that the store is decorated with panache.

  • Visited May 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank malcolm1606
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Waikoloa, Hawaii
Level Contributor
234 reviews
147 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
“New location. Same great coffee”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 1, 2012

They recently added a new location at La Encantada mall, and the coffee is still great. Very small store, so you probably will have to take your delicious cup of caffeine with you elsewhere to enjoy.

    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Muadib84
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Waikoloa, Hawaii
Level Contributor
234 reviews
147 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
“Authentic coffee master”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 17, 2012

Brought here by a friend, was wowed. Owner is latest in a family dynasty of coffee makers , over 300 years.
Do yourself a favor and indulge yourself with a personalized cup of real coffee or tea

Visited December 2011
Helpful?
2 Thank Muadib84
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
United States
Level Contributor
101 reviews
58 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
“Wins my poll for worst espresso in Tucson.”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 2, 2011

During a recent visit to Tucson, I made a point of visiting a number of espresso cafes, which is something I like to do whenever I travel. In Tucson, I went to three places: Caffé Luce, Café Passe, and Savaya Coffee.

The Savaya was a must, because it appeared to be highly rated (more on that later) and was close to where I was staying. And just to get to the heart of the matter before you continue reading, the cappuccino I was served at the Savaya tied for the worst I’ve ever experienced.

Is my palette dead or distorted? I don’t think so: while blindfolded, I can tell you whether I’m drinking Talisker, Oban or McCallan’s, and I’ve had espresso all over the world. Just for a point of reference, my favorite mass-market espressos are Traveller’s (based in Moscow) and Café d’Arte (in Seattle). They are pretty much my standards for flavor, complexity and strength.

So what about the Savaya? First off, as I waited for my cappuccino, the barista was having an earnest conversation about beans and acidity, which I thought was probably a good sign. But I also noticed that during my five-minute wait, the same barista kept reminding customers of the Savaya’s “best coffee” rating, something that should send up a red flag. (If you’re really “the best,” do you need to continually remind yourself and everyone else?)

And then the coffee arrived. I took two drinks: after the first sip, I didn’t want to believe that my glass contained a nasty brew that tasted like sulphuric acid and ashes from a partially smoked Lucky Strike. But in the interests of science, I took another drink. Dreadful. I then left.

As I mentioned, a local magazine—Tucson Lifestyle—named Savaya the best coffee place in 2009 and 2011, the result of a readers’ poll. This is mystifying enough (although not really, given the long queues in our society for things like Stephen Spielberg movies and special deals at Kentucky Fried Chicken). And they certainly like to remind you. I've noticed that on other review sites, people keep talking about the atmosphere. But the coffee itself (which is the whole point, isn’t it?) is absolutely undrinkable.

If you find yourself in Tucson, a surprisingly charming town, my advice is that you have your espresso at Café Passe or Caffé Luce and avoid the Savaya at all costs.

  • Visited January 2011
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Isoruku
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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