The Almighty Shift: Hello Darkness, my old friend

It takes a monumental encounter for me to “interrupt” my usual style of blogging with a review. But. Every good thing anyone has ever said about coffee comes true at Cape Town’s caffeine underdog: Shift Espresso Bar. As a writer, this reputation and sensory revelation cannot be ignored especially when it comes neatly packaged as a dark liquid in a cup, with crema on top.


“Death before decaf” is the cornerstone of this coffee oasis – only second to their introduction of the strongest coffee in the world: The Almighty. Truth be told, The Almighty is the real reason I’m writing this blog post. It’s a bold claim to call something the “biggest” or “strongest”, “darkest” or “tastiest” but Luigi Vigliotti has reason to make this kind of noise.

My partner drinks a lot of coffee. A lot. Coffee right before bed? No problem. Coffee with dinner? No problem. Coffee from a drip? No problem. One double-shot latté with The Almighty grind replaced a usual revered Saturday nap with wide eyes and enough energy to not even be upset by lack of slumber. Incredible. My partner loves naps but loves this coffee even more than that.


I did not fail to sleep. Instead, The Almighty double-shot cappuccino (no sugar because I’m sweet enough, and eew) served as an elixir for deep restorative rest. I call it: The Almighty Rest. There is dark magic in this brew.

An average shot of espresso contains ‘s ±65mg of caffeine and roughly 185mg for a double shot. Brace yourself. One shot of The Almighty contains 900mg of caffeine. Still don’t believe it’s the strongest? I dare you. It’s a blend of different coffees and delivers a full-bodied, rich cocoa flavour. I’d suggest a pastry to go with it but wait for the buzz before you decide what you’re going to do next.

As far as the experience of Shift Espresso Bar goes, here’s what some people have to say:

“Coffee is definitely the best in South Africa.”

“Apart from the good coffee and tasteful atmosphere, it’s good to come across an owner/barista that truly cares about his customers.”

Enough talking. All that’s left to do now, is whip out my Aeropress, put The Almighty in, and sip to refuel before the week begins again. Hello Darkness, my old friend.

Check them out on Facebook and Instagram.


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