At This New Vegan Coffee Shop, Next-Level Porridge Takes Center Stage

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“Breakfast congee” with maple granola, blueberries,and poached strawberries. Photo: Melissa Hom

Australians have contributed many things to the New York coffee shop, flat whites and avocado toast among them. And as of next week, the Good Sort brings something new to the category: sweet and savory congees, the rice porridge commonly consumed in China for breakfast. This makes sense, since the shop is co-owned by Australian expat Eddy Buckingham and his Chinese-born partner Jeff Lam, and is adjacent to their restaurant, Chinese Tuxedo. There’s a turmeric-and-coconut congee with Champagne-poached cranberries; a mushroom congee with braised shiitake and jicama, served with the Chinese cruller called youtiao; and even “Aunt Kate’s pear crumble congee.” There are also Chinese teas, espresso drinks, and come spring, fresh juices, all categorized by color. Another innovation: Everything is vegan, including the pastries and the “milks” (oat, coconut, almond) in the lattes.

Clockwise from top left: Aunt Kate’s pear crumble congee with poached pears. Turmeric-and-coconut congee with Champagne-poached cranberries. “Breakfast congee.” Not a congee: pandan tapioca with kaffir-and-palm-sugar caramel, lychee, pineapple, and puffed rice. Photo: Melissa Hom
Color-coded vegan lattes, made with non-dairy “milks” and no coffee: Red (beet), Black (sesame and activated charcoal), and Gold (turmeric). Photo: Melissa Hom
Algae-enhanced Blue latte. Photo: Melissa Hom
The Green Latte, with matcha. Photo: Melissa Hom
Prior to becoming a Sino-Australian vegan coffee shop, the space was a Chinatown liquor store. The espresso machine is Italian; the Vittoria coffee beans come from Australia. Photo: Melissa Hom
The shop is next to Chinese Tuxedo on Chinatown’s most atmospheric block. Photo: Melissa Hom
The name refers to Aussie slang for “a person you like and would like to spend more time around,” according to co-owner Eddy Buckingham. Photo: Melissa Hom

5 Doyers St., nr. Bowery; 646-895-9301

*A version of this article appears in the January 23, 2017, issue of New York Magazine.

At This New Vegan Coffee Shop, Porridge Takes Center Stage