Round K is a Korean-style coffee shop, run by Ockhyeon Byron, that opened its doors in New York in 2015. Dah-Bahns — Korean style coffee shops — are usually cozy, living room-like places. Round K is especially inspired by South Korea in the ‘80s. As soon as you enter the coffee shop, you are hit with the smell of fresh coffee beans.
Round K offers a special menu item that combines two breakfast favorites: Egg Cappuccino made of korean cappuccino, egg yolk and whipped cream. Egg Coffee uses only the yolk of the egg and is not a Korean speciality drink; many different countries have their own twists on it. In Vietnam, it is made with condensed milk and Vietnamese coffee, while in Sweden they just use coffee, egg and water. Round K makes this classic its own by substituting the condensed milk with heavy cream. The coffee shop uses its own fresh coffee beans which add a smoky, rich flavor and finish the drink off with cocoa powder. The egg yolk might seem like a weird addition to coffee; however, it is almost impossible for you to notice its presence. The egg makes the coffee smooth and gives it the yolk-like texture. It becomes fluffier and lighter, but at the same time, it is a little richer in both flavor and in consistency. The whipped cream with cocoa powder on top is sweet in a way that balances off the bitterness of the coffee, creating a delicious fusion.
At first glance, the shop consists of a counter covered with coffee utensils and pastries; and walls filled with posters and aesthetic decorations. However, once you get over the initial astoundment of the warmth and obscurity of the place, you notice a beige curtain that reveals the archway to the puffy chairs and tables where people can sit down to grab delicious breakfast food or try one of Round K’s delicious and innovative drinks. Egg lovers and haters alike should give this delicious, rich and silky drink a try. The ambiance of Round K and the flavorful coffee will definitely be worth the visit to the Lower East Side.
A version of this article appeared in the Monday, Nov. 20 print edition. Email Yasmin Gulec at [email protected]