Onyx Tonics

Review by: Emily Madsen

With a continuously rotating line up of local roasters and eclectic flavors, Onyx Tonics coffee house in downtown Burlington is far from your average cafe. It prides itself on an ability to tease out underlying flavors seldom tasted in typical brews. Owners Jason and Tiffany Gonzalez use unconventional methods to showcase the intricate flavors of the different beans. This lives up to the underlying culinary character of strive in Burlington: to constantly reinvent food and flavors in new and enticing manners.

Coffee is brewed with a pronounced expertise, coupled with great conversation while you wait. The hand filtered coffee is light, refreshing, and does not have a single note of acidity, making it by far the best brewed cup of coffee I have tasted. This could be attributed to a futuristic halogen brewing machine that produces the amazing cup.

Espresso is just as enchanting, truly owning up to Onyx’s claim of revealing the unique flavors of each bean. Thuti espresso has an amazing boldness, almost like encompassing flavors of a full meal and without any bitterness. You can taste multiple layers and dimensions of flavor in each sip, only encouraging you to take another taste.

For those who love their coffee sweeter, Onyx Tonics is proud to serve a Vermont signature, the maple latte. Instead of adding simple or flavored syrups, Onyx adds Vermont maple syrup to the classic combination of espresso and milk. What makes this latte different from others is lack of artificial sugar or overpowering sweet taste of lesser lattes. The maple syrup adds just a hint of sweet without dulling the rich, dark flavors of espresso.

Complimenting the outstanding coffee is a variety of local pastries, one of which is Mrs. Weinerz doughnuts. These are every bit as eccentric and bold as the coffee, including such flavors as wild-grape and parsnip.

The layout is inviting and hip, just as one would expect from a coffee shop in Burlington. There is a bar where you can watch the brewing process, or if you are searching for a quiet place to study, there are many tables as well. It definitely has the vibe of a coffee house with high-end goods, but without an accompanying snob factor.

Onyx Tonics is open every day but Sunday, from 8-5. It offers wifi and features local art on the walls. With its friendly staff and local roasters changing every week, Onyx is a coffee house that earns long-term loyalty.

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