Is this a coffee shop or a modeling agency?

Café Volan on Bangs Avenue in the Steinbach Building is seemingly where the beautiful and street-stylish converge for the best Lattes and café au laits prepared by business partners and avid surfers Paul Cali and Doug Parent.

Founded in June of last year, Cali and Parent chose “Volan” as the name to incorporate surfing in a less-than-obvious way into their business.  Volan is a type of fiberglass that is applied to heavier, longer surfboards.

(L to R) Doug Parent and Paul Cali with cafe friends.

I spoke with Parent about what makes their caffeine fix crave-worthy.

TBP:  Your latte’s are something special.

Parent:  It’s two things – the way we texture the milk and coffee flavor profile.

All day every day we continuously dial-in to the temperature of the milk to make sure it is where we want it.  And we never re-steam the milk.

We use good, fresh ingredients as well as a special dose of espresso for each shot.  We go so far as to pay attention to the amount of pressure we use to hand pack the espresso grounds before making each cup.

All day every day, humidity in the air changes and that affects the consistency of the beans as well as the fluid that’s extracted from the beans, which matters a lot when you are making a great cup of coffee.

"Latte Art" from Cafe Volan.

TBP:  As a coffee addict, I’ll say that the coffee itself is unlike anything else I have tried in the best way possible – dense and rich with no bitter aftertaste.

Parent:  Paul and I wanted Café Volan to be a place where quality and craft are evident in each cup.

We choose coffee beans with notes of dark chocolate and rum raisin and a spice note of cinnamon.  Our beans are chosen to stand up to the texture and flavor of the milk.  Other places, the flavor may be washed out.

The milk and the coffee flavor profiles are always, always balanced and pronounced.

TBP:  It is all in the details.  Speaking of which, the finishing touch to each latte is what Paul told me is called “Latte Art.”

Parent:  Our coffee not only tastes great, it looks delicious.  Getting that feather in the top of the foam is about having the proper, dense micro-foam.  Paul competed recently in a Latte Art “throw down” in Rhode Island.  Ask him how he did.

Cafe Volan, 510 Bangs Avenue, 732.455.3399.  CafeVolan.com and on Facebook.