Three Marks Coffee. So-called because the place is owned by three men, all of whom are named Mark. There is local Mark, from Barcelona; Northern Italian Mark & Southern Italian Mark. I meet two, both have their trouser legs rolled up. One sports a red wolly hat which nicely plays off the small red trays that the coffees are served on.
There is a thick stack of Apartamento magazines. I read one and muse over the passages that have been highlighted in pencil (other people’s highlights are a source of interest for me.)
I order a cafe con leche and ask about the distinction between “Grinder 1” and “Grinder”, mistakingly believing that it has to do with the size of the grind.
“It’s the type of coffee. The one in Grinder 1 is from Madrid and the other is a local roaster” one of the Marks tells me.
“Well whichever one goes best with milk,” I say. “And one of those,” I add, pointing to a savoury knotted roll riddled with sobrasada ( a genius idea from Cloudstreet Bakery).
My coffee arrives at the corner that I have picked with a couple of formica green chairs and a succulent with a broken arm. The cup lacks a handle which makes the act of drinking the coffee more intimate, as I cradle it in both hands.
Even on a Monday morning, there is a steady trickle of people coming in for coffee. A fair few appear to be regulars and are greeted by name by one of the Marks and then asked if they would like their usual.
It’s a good place to have as a regular haunt I can see why it appeals. I like it enough to take home a print of the Three Marks by Erika and Italian artist living in Barcelona.