Vera, Mark and Liz Mendez’s West Loop restaurant, is one of our go-tos for great Spanish food, and now it’s also going to feature a daytime coffee and tea program.
Mark, the chef, will be featuring pour-over coffee from various American and Canadian roasters. He's also added a new La Marzocco espresso machine, so they can make espresso drinks. Liz, the sommelier, is handling the tea side, and she’ll be offering a pairing menu, which pairs coffee or tea with amari, vermouth and sherry.
“Tea and sherry both have oxidative qualities so it's no surprise that I have a love for both,” she says. “We'll also be brewing the tea at proper times and temperatures, as that is just as crucial as the many variables in making great coffee. We're in the final stages of deciding which roasters and tea company we'll be using at the start of the project.”
In addition to the beverages, there will be a small morning pastry menu, wi-fi so you can get some work done, and a food and beverage library, with books and periodicals that focus on coffee, tea, wine, beer and spirits.
“As a line cook or an aspiring sommelier it can be expensive to buy books on all the subjects of interest to our careers,” Liz says. "We're hoping to give back to the community by providing a hub for study, conversation and collaboration. We've already had multiple hospitality professionals offer to donate books, so this is definitely an exciting part of the daytime concept as well.”
We’ll update you when Vera starts its new hours, but Liz expects that daytime hours will be 7am–2pm starting the second week of November.