The Lakeside Street Coffee House, 402 W. Lakeside St., can feel off the beaten track, tucked away on the south side of Monona Bay. Once you venture down Park Street to find it, though — and it’s worth finding! — it has the friendly feel of an intimate lodge, with a sweeping view of Bernie’s Beach Park, the bay and the Madison skyline beyond.
The espresso beans come from Fitchburg’s True Coffee Roasters and were roasted just three days prior to my visit. The blend has a mix of dark and medium roast beans, and my barista pulled the espresso in the 25-second range, which prevented the beans from tasting bitter and kept the smooth and slightly chocolatey characteristics intact.
While a regular latte allows those flavors to come through, the salted caramel latte is not as successful. The caramel and espresso never quite blend — the caramel syrup is very sweet and tends to overshadow the flavor of the beans. And it might be too much to ask that the salt could hold up to both coffee and thick caramel.