There's nothing wrong with Joe, but it's never the top of my list for coffee shops. It's easy to get to, and right across from Rittenhouse Square, and they have excellent coffee. All major pluses. Today I had something called a Cold Brew Latte that was exactly the right thing for a sunny muggy day. And I worked while eavesdropping on a very intense PR conversation happening next to me. A group of five or six extremely stylish people were talking about some parties they have planned, and schemed about how to get the right people to come to their restaurant. Then they spent a full five minutes speculating about what Craig Laban looks like. I swear to you that one of them said, "I once saw a picture of him, but it was fuzzy, and I can't describe it for you." Everyone nodded thoughtfully. There was much discussion about whether or not he has a beard.
I think the reason I don't love Joe is because it doesn't feel like it has much of a personality. I've been to the flagship Joe in New York, and it's okay (though the tables are offensively small. Like, the size of a small notebook small), and it has some personality. Joe's outside of NYC feel like slightly off-brand copies to me, and the Rittenhouse Square version is a good example of that. It's cleanness and white space feels more blank than anything else. That said, it's a great and convenient place to meet for a coffee date in the middle of the day, and they do an excellent chemex.
What I worry about at Joe: Politics, mostly. I'm writing something about my work as a city committeeperson, and it's making me stressed out to think about November. What is even going on with the world that Donald Trump is being taken seriously as a world leader? Meanwhile, my representative in congress just got convicted of a crime, so I'm about to lose my representation in the House, which also sucks. I also finally finished reading this infuriating story about how Detroit had over 10,000 untested rape kids and had to crowdfund to get them all tested. They literally had to get money from the star of Law & Order: SVU to put rapists in jail. I'm sorry, but...what?
Coffee: Joe Roasting
Address: 1845 Walnut St, Philadelphia PA 19103
Hours: M-Sa 7-8, Sun 8-8
Seating: Mostly 2-tops inside, with 5-6 bar seats, plus a few softer chairs in the way back.