Billboard’s Music + Coffee Series — which fittingly kicks off on National Coffee Day — highlights coffee shops that awaken more than just the taste buds, but all five methods of perception: touch, sight, smell, taste and sound.
My first caffeine journey took me to Bluestone Lane’s shiny new Brooklyn outpost in DUMBO, where everything is Instagram-worthy, from the flat white to the flamingo and palm tree wall. The shop sits in an up-and-coming mixed-use “campus” in the heart of Brooklyn’s tech triangle. Inspired by coffee culture in Melbourne, Australia, the expanding chain is “changing people’s perceptions of coffee and creating environments where customers are immersed in the experience.”
Whether I’m with company or flying solo, I feel at home. There are familiar faces working here, one in particular from the Bryant Park location. She greets me by name with a smile.
A flat white and avo smash are brought to my table, both of which have a cult following. The gold chairs resemble cables on the Brooklyn Bridge, and there’s a projection screen playing A Film About Coffee. Shazam is open on my phone, because discovering a new song or artist is an added bonus.
On another visit, I try the new “no filter needed” turmeric golden latte which is, as advertised, “warm, slightly earthy, and sweet and savory at the same time.” Then there are tried-and-true iced lattes in matcha, chai and almond.
Typical scenario: My plate has been cleared and I’m sipping on ice-cube water, but stay because my caffeine buzz kicked in and I want to know what’s next on the playlist. On point with the vibe (and new discoveries) include: HONNE and Izzy Bizu‘s “Someone That Loves You,” Banks‘ “Change” (Chainsmokers remix), Kungs vs Cookin’ on 3 Burners’ “This Girl” and Glass Animals‘ “Gooey” (Gilligan Moss remix).
Marketing director Andrew Stone tells me that a friend of the shop curates the music. “We provide him with a brief that we’re after. It’s been a highly contentious issue as music choice is a very perceptive and opinionated subject.”
Does the music vary by day/time?
Yes, we have three playlists curated: A.M., P.M. and happy hour.
If I were to create a playlist, are there songs that best represent the vibe of the shop?
Something by Chet Faker.