I love finding hidden little gems around New York City my most recent discovery is Hi-Collar in the East Village. Located bustling East 10th Street this tiny 13 seat spot is what's known as a "kissaten" a Japanese style tea house that also serves coffee. The menu boasts over 10 different types of beans that can be served pour over, siphon or aeropress in addition to a few specialty drinks like the creamy Royal Milk Tea and my favorite the luscious Vietnamese Iced Coffee.
The small food includes Omelets with tomato sauce and rice, a limited Berkshire Pork Katsu sandwich (only 10 per day) and wonderful Japanese Hot Cakes served alongside maple syrup, strawberries and a tangy yuzu butter. These are quite similar to Western style pancakes but much lighter and fluffier. I felt delightfully content after eating these instead of stomach overload from the usual cakes.
The menu also includes an array of desserts and at 6:00 PM the entire space turns into a bar with a three page list of sake, beer and cocktails. I'm pretty sure I could spend my entire day at this cozy little cafe.
214 East 10th Street between 1st & 2nd Avenue
New York, NY 10003