Food & Drink

Newkirk Plaza’s Coffee Z Celebrates Opening With Fresh Fruit Smoothies, Cold Brews, Pastries & More


Coffee Z exterior 2

When we walked into Coffee Z  (30 Newkirk Plaza) Sunday afternoon, the new café already had the feel of an established neighborhood spot — a couple people chatted over muffins as they looked out on Newkirk Plaza, others hurried in and out (“It’s Sunday, but I’ve gotta go to work, ugh,” one person explained) and others popped in just to wave to the workers.

“The neighborhood has been great — really welcoming,” said Zuhal Akram, who lives in the neighborhood and is running the shop along with her brother.

Coffee Z people sitting by window

Coffee Z pastry shelf

The café offers an extensive list of beverages, ranging from a small drip coffee ($2) to espresso ($2.75) and iced chai ($4) — and more (see the menu below). Plus, there’s fresh squeezed juice ($5 for a small) and fruit smoothies ($4 for a small). The coffee is from Stumptown, and the pastries (including croissants, danishes and muffins) hail from Manhattan’s Ceci Cela — which Serious Eats lauded for having the best croissants in the entire city. Additionally, there’s loose leaf teas from MEM Tea Imports.

Coffee Z menu

Our spinach, apple, oranges, beets, and ginger smoothie.
Our spinach, apple, oranges, beets, and ginger smoothie.

Coffee Z fruit

Zuhal also let us know that they’ll be offering cupcakes from another spot that’s landed serious praise — Bay Ridge’s Robicelli’s Bakery, which, among various accolades, was named as one of the “99 essential restaurants in Brooklyn” by the Village Voice. Plus, Zuhal said she plans on making her own yogurt parfaits.

“We’re excited to be here — there are not so many coffee shops around here,” Zuhal said. “There’s Coffee Mob and Milk & Honey, but there’s no place that offers Stumptown.”

Coffee Z interior

Coffee Z Stumptown with smooth menu

Having worked in the coffee business for many years, Zuhal can easily translate the language of the brewers for the coffee layman and frequently likes to talk shop with her interested customers.

“I have a passion for making different types of coffee,” she said, smiling.

Coffee Z people in line

That passion translates to some darn good coffee, and we tried the cold brew iced coffee, which was perfectly balanced and needed no sugar or milk added to it to make it taste delicious.

Our smoothie, cold brew iced coffee and almond croissant.
Our smoothie, cold brew iced coffee and almond croissant.

Coffee Z pastry shelf 2

We also got our hands on a smoothie, which included spinach, apple, oranges, beets, and ginger — which was fresh, tasty and the ginger (which fortunately one of the employees suggested we get) helped to enhance the other flavors without overpowering them.

Coffee Z pastries
The almond croissant, coffee, blueberry muffin, and blueberry danish.

And, of course, we couldn’t let the afternoon go by without trying some of the pastries and easily downed the blueberry danish, the almond croissant and, because we’re a little blueberry crazy, a blueberry muffin.

The technical term for all of that? We’re pretty sure it’s yum. The blueberry danish wasn’t too sweet and tasted like blueberries (hooray!), the muffin was moist and bursting with berries and the almond croissant was deliciously decadent.

The blueberry danish
The blueberry danish

It looks like many of our neighbors agree with us, and Coffee Z is already landing rave reviews on Yelp.

“I went to check this spot out this morning and was pleasantly surprised,” Pamela M wrote. “I ordered the chai latte with soymilk which the owner made for me. She explained to me how she makes her own tea for the chai and how it is not powder based. It was so delicious that it did not need sweetener. I appreciated the chat that I had with the owner it made me want to come back. We definitely need more  places like this in the neighborhood.”

Welcome to Ditmas Park, Coffee Z!

Coffee Z is located at 30 Newkirk Plaza. The café is open from 7am-8pm Monday through Saturday and 8am-8pm Sunday. The shop can be reached at 718-484-9119, and you can follow Coffee Z on Facebook.

Comment policy


  1. Sounds like a great place to grab pastries, they sound like they’re good quality! I will give them a try! Wish it were a bakery though, we really need one in the area, especially since John’s closed down! And also there is a Juice Bar already on the Plaza…the Chinese-owned one, just because it’s not trendy-looking, doesn’t mean it’s not there! And their prices are fair! Unlike Coffee Z’s $7 for a juice, sounds pretty expensive (those are Manhattan prices); are they at least organic fruits and veggies? Otherwise, I wish them luck because there’s already too many coffee places in the neighborhood! Will they be offering gourmet sandwiches or other bites? I think that will help their business a lot, since no one on the Plaza sells that! Right now, all you can get are bodega and diner sandwiches along w. Chinese and Halal food! Welcome!

  2. Awesome, as much as I wanted Coffee Mob to be good, I hope this place gives them a run for their money and maybe forces them to improve or at least be faster…

  3. Do they have good coffee (meaning full bodied and dark with a note of nut and a five minute aftertaste, like you find everywhere in Italy), or do they serve the usual tart sour bright acidic hipster variety which tastes like they poured vinegar in it?

  4. always excited to see a new small business in the hood. Would be more excited if they were original, same Ceci Cela pastries, same tea as Coffee Mob, even down to a poor imitation of the decor !
    I guess they say ‘imitation is a the greatest form of flattery ‘

  5. i always hoped that the newkirk plaza gets a little less dumpy. Cool edition! I’ll check it out when i’m over there.

  6. Newkirk Plaza has many problems, first among them: No stanchions. You can walk from one end of the plaza to the other and you will not see a single stanchion. Until this problem is addressed, I fear the prospects for Newkirk Plaza are poor.

  7. Another reason to go to the Plaza, added to Leon’s, Newkirk Station Wines, and Almac (and the bank).

  8. Wow that’s weird. I never thought about how the lack of “stanchions” affects the business prospects of a given area. I mean has anyone ever been to 5th ave near central park? all those stanchions = all that business!

  9. Stanchions (or the lack thereof) aren’t the first thing I think of when sizing up a neighborhood’s prospects, but they are probably the second or third thing I consider.

  10. Cafe Madeline also cannot deal with the amount of customers that patronise their business. It takes far too long to get anything there. Another business selling the same product isn’t an issue, it’s a blessing.

  11. I’m just happy this is not a Starbucks or another Dunkin Doughnuts. Yay for slow food and small businesses!

  12. Maybe Dunkin Donuts has criteria for how close their franchises can be to one another. There’s already one about fifty feet away on the other side of the plaza.

  13. I think that Dunkin’ Donuts just fifty feet away that you’re referring to is actually their back entrance…


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