Hava Java

258 Water Street


St. John’s city council live blog for April 8, 2013

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11 April 2013

  1. Just Me · April 11, 2013

    Simply the best!

  2. AC · April 11, 2013

    If you can put up with the pretentious clientele and the heat, you’re in for a half decent time. If you want really good coffee try Jumping Bean.

  3. wally · April 11, 2013

    best coffee in town great staff

  4. AG · April 11, 2013

    If I could leave zero stars I would! This place has horrible service and is pretentious! I agree with AC in that the Jumping Bean is a lot better and not snobby or rude like Hava Java staff and management. The place is also not kept clean well and looks old and run down.

  5. Rick · April 11, 2013

    Hava’s cappucino’s and Sicilian’s are as good as any I’ve ever had.
    Ratings: Hava #1
    Coffee Matters #2
    Jumping Bean #3
    Auntie Craes #4
    Coffee and Co #5
    …do the rest really matter?

  6. Mark · April 11, 2013

    As humorous and true as the comments about this place being pretentious may be, I found the food/beverages here to be amongst the best I’ve ever had. Definitely one of the best I know of.

    I found the staff to be friendly and helpful, it was more the costumers being pretentious than anything else.
    Some even going so far as sporting the classic thick framed glasses while writing on their laptop as they sipped coffee in public.

    Artsy cliches are to be expected here, but I would have to say do not let that deter you from trying this place.
    Amazing food, cozy laid back atmosphere if you keep to yourself, and best drinks in town.

    Definitely a recommend.
    5 stars for their White Heat hot chocolate alone.

  7. Anon · April 11, 2013

    First of all, what kind of jackass hates on a store because its customers are pretentious?

    Been going there for years and I have to say, i’ve never had a single bad experience. Excellent drinks, if you can stand the downtown prices.

    With that being said, I have to echo AG’s sentiment in that the cafe isn’t the cleanest. Specifically the ceiling directly above the cappuccino machine, which is covered with large grimey woolies that flutter about every time someone opens or closes the door.

    Can someone give that area a good scrubbing? Please?

  8. J-Mar · April 11, 2013

    I would give this establishment a 4 out of 5 , I like the atmosphere and find their Service to be average . The food and beverages are great but also have the Downtown Prices applying to them ! However I would like to see some live local bands or an open mic night happening their that would make it an even more enjoyable place to spend leisure time at !

  9. Demasduit · April 11, 2013

    This is a great spot. It has a rustic appeal to it, and a warm inviting atmosphere. They have a great selection, decent prices, and friendly staff. I can get a large tanzanian peaberry coffee for fifty cents more than a coffee at Tim Horton’s. That’s not bad for competing against such a large company. Also, tanzanian peaberry is the most amazing coffee. I like everything I’ve tried at Hava Java, especially the chai latte and the cocoa de Mexico. Hot sauce and chocolate is strange and beautiful. However, my favorite combination at Hava Java is simply a large coffee (hopefully the peaberry stuff) with the newest copy of the Scope every second Thursday.

  10. buckleyslane · April 11, 2013

    I think hava java has great coffee. I am an espresso and water drinker and i find that i am using less and less water as time goes by. I have been inclines to get “red eyes” lately. An espresso shot dropped into some drip coffee. At some places you are charged about 70 cents to add a shot of espresso to your coffee. On the menu board at Hava Java this is the case… or so i thought. But, actually at Hava Java they have two ways you can pay for a red eye, well they call it something else there. A clever subtlety. It says on the board you can add a shot to your drink for 70 cents but if you try to add a shot to regular coffee this rule doesn’t apply, you have to pay over 3 dollars, so i found out. I can understand that each place is different and they can charge whatever people are willing to pay but as i politely inquired a very angry male staff member came to confront me about my question. His response was “because i said so” This lead me to believe that he was not just an employee but an owner of some sort. I was there with my girlfriend who is pregnant and certainly not confrontational. This man suggested that him and i “take it over there” to which i replied no thanks i’m fine to have a quick discussion right here. I had only held the line up for about a minute and i didn’t want to get into anything too heated around my girlfriend or make the other customers uneasy. I decided to turn to my girl and said “lets just go” and we tuned to leave. On out way out the staff member added, loud enough for some other customers to hear: “and don’t you ever come back!” I was a little put out by this experience and i feel bad that i have actually been banned from a coffee shop in my hometown but, so be it. I was only asking a question, the staff member could have easily said “that’s how we do it here”. I think maybe he took my question very personally. I appreciate anyone who takes the time to read this long winded review. Great coffee, for the most part,nice staff, just be careful who is behind the counter when you ask a question.

  11. John · April 11, 2013

    This was written by a guy who was visiting from another province and had been in the cafe two times prior to this incident. Needless to say watch out as you may have more people coming down to touch the muffins. We can definately label this guy the “Muffin Nazi”. IF I do ever go to this place again, I can say for sure it will be to grab a muffin and piss this guy off.

    “Don’t touch the muffins!‎‎
    I’ve little more to say than don’t aggravate the owner or he’ll belittle you to the point of NEVER wanting to return to his shop. It’s really too bad because all the wonderful things you hear about the coffee, the snacks and the staff are true…really, unless you make a mistake and upset the boss you’ll probably love

  12. Molly Godarkly · April 11, 2013

    Overrated. Jumping Bean Coffee and Auntie Craes have better coffee. The staff are completely bereft of manners for the most part unless your are part of the scenester clique that frequents there.The place just reeks of self importance.

  13. Morgan Murray · April 11, 2013

    @buckleyslane: You got propositioned to a fight for asking a legitimate question and got banned for life and you gave it 3-stars? It must be really, REALLY, REALLLLY good coffee.

  14. Mel · April 11, 2013

    Great service, great teas, great dipped oatmeal cakes. Lousy americano but that can be forgiven.

  15. Sam · April 11, 2013

    A few years ago if you wanted to go to a coffee house downtown, you were limited to this place and coffee matters. I had poor experiences at both. I was given filthy mugs on two different occasions at Hava. And I had my order completely forgotten another time, to which the staff didn’t even give me a simple “sorry about that!”)

    Now when I’m in the area, I go to Coffee Matters and it’s great. I’d even prefer to go to Starbucks (for all of it’s huge corporation-ness) over Hava because they, at least, can make a consistantly good latte.

  16. Caffiend · April 11, 2013

    Great coffee, cool spot, great location, love the seating outside, love the oatcakes, and love the spinach artichoke dip. The most interesting thing about this place is that from careful observation you’ll start to notice that some of the staff hang out there even when they’re not working. There are always plenty of staff on at busy hours and always at least two until close. They are always busy but never seem over worked. A couple of times during a hectic day the owner of the place has stopped in the middle of what seems to be a million errands to serve me coffee and ring me in. I definitely respect any business owner that treats his staff so well, and is willing to work among them.

  17. eee · April 11, 2013

    Their bagel, hummus, tomato and cheese is absolutely amazing.
    As for their staff, there are at least a few really good people there!

  18. Tony · April 11, 2013

    Average to poor service with a pretentious artsy fartsy clientele.When I was there it also seemed a bit dirty.Move along to some place better!

  19. Tony · April 11, 2013

    A place for hipsters and self important types.My coffee was awful as I can remember and the staff were rude.You can find better brew at McDonalds!

  20. BitchSlap! · April 11, 2013

    How they win “Best Staff” and “Best Place to Work” and “Best Coffee” in the The Scope year after year is beyond me. Don’t bother going there if you have a soul and a sense of humor.

  21. a.k. · April 11, 2013

    It’s a serious improvement over what it used to be. They’ve always had decent coffee, but in the past it was just hard to find a spot in there. If I lived closer, I’d probably go more often, but they’re among the top of my list for local coffee.

  22. J · April 11, 2013

    Save your time. Jumping Bean on Harvey Road has the best coffee.

  23. Frank · April 11, 2013

    Actually they have the same coffee. Jumping Bean supplies the Java, and a number of other shops, with their coffee.

  24. The Scope · April 11, 2013

    2011 Best of Food & Drink winner: Best Cafe
    2011 Best of Food & Drink winner: Best Quick Lunch
    2011 Best of Food & Drink winner: Best Hot Chocolate
    2011 Best of Food & Drink winner: Best Coffee (Regular)
    2011 Best of Food & Drink winner: Best Coffee (Espresso Based)

  25. Samuel T. Woodrow · April 11, 2013

    They should just rename the place The Hava Java Club, and woe be to you if you’re not in “in” with the club. You good folk, you’re gonna get sub-par to mediocre service with a just a subtle hint of attitude, and at times, not the greatest coffee around (compared to some other places around town). Ah, but oh rejoice if you’re part of the Club, as you’ll then be greeted with an actual smile (sometimes a verbal “hey, how’s it going”, and consistently get your coffee not only faster, but …. cheaper?

    Other than that, they do have good eats.

  26. Les · April 11, 2013

    I agree some of the staff have a serious attitude problem, but there are two particular people who have been working there for years, and they are the only reason I EVER go to Hava. Mediocre in terms of actually sitting in. Coffee is decent. Decor is kinda shitty. Meh, its coffee. Make it at home.

  27. bowlingreen · April 11, 2013

    While the staff have been pretty friendly for the most part, I’ve been disappointed several times by the quality of Hava Java’s bevvies. I’m a chai enthusiast, and twice now I’ve gone and discovered that for whatever reason, there were whole coffee beans in my chai latte. I love the idea of the place, but….what the crap?

  28. TemporaryBeauty · April 11, 2013

    good coffee (better than Rocket)
    not so great pastry (better at Rocket)

  29. JL · April 11, 2013

    Best latte I’ve had in town. Love the artwork upstairs. Really love uke night!

  30. B · April 11, 2013

    I never spent too mcuh time here because I thought the place was a little pretentious, I always felt like the staff were friendly to other customers but appeared to be a little annoyed to serve me. As ya would, I said fuck that place and started going to rocket or one of the other many coffee places downtown.

    Anyway, I was walking by this weekend and rocket was packed, I wanted something to drink and this place was open so I said “whatever I’ll feel uncool to beat the line”. I was so pleased! The guy serving me was so friendly! He didn’t have any forced smirk or get on with any hipster nonsense, he just got me my coffee like your every day friendly human being! I know it was only one experience but I hope to god they got the hint and let go of the angst so the general less than trendy public can enjoy the place!

  31. timh212 · April 11, 2013

    I used to go there all the time! The lady behind the counter was very rude and snarky as I was trying to make up my mind! Sorry for wasting your time! I walk past whenever she’s working because I don’t want the harassment.

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