Brewing a cup of siphon coffee at Ashley's Espresso Emporium.
Brewing a cup of siphon coffee at Ashley’s Espresso Emporium.

When it comes to coffee…the really good stuff. The coffee that’s fresh roasted and the scent of steaming espresso fills the air—the Outer Banks isn’t quite floating on a sea of caffeine like Seattle, but there are some pretty good espresso bars out there that make amazing Outer Banks coffee.

The latest to come on the Outer Banks scene is Ashley’s Espresso Parlour at the corner of Helga Street and the Bypass. That’s in Kill Devil Hills, but right on the town like with Kitty Hawk.

Fresh Outer Banks Coffee Done Right

They’re all so good, it’s a bit difficult to say one is better than the other, but Ashley’s has a pretty legitimate claim to be the best.

Ashley is Ashley Barnes and she’s been roasting Outer Banks coffee for 20 years, and over that time she’s developed her own style. Everything we have sampled at the Parlour has been outstanding. The shop used to be a swimming suit store, but what Ashley and her husband Eric have managed to create is fantastic. Much of that, evidently, has to do with the woodworking skill of Eric. The feeling inside is light and airy with a beautifully handcrafted wood espresso bar. This is a very kid-friendly place. Pet friendly, too. So yes, kids and dogs are welcome. The kids, the pet friendly, the feeling of the place and even roasting their own Outer Banks coffee wouldn’t matter one bit if they didn’t know how to make a good espresso drink. They do. Excellent, in fact. A nice touch, that will really get the caffeine juices flowing—they put an extra shot of espresso in their cappuccinos. It really ups the flavor.

Looking for a different way to make coffee? Check out the siphon brew. Water is heated in a bulb underneath the coffee. The boiling water travels up to the chamber that hold the coffee, and is then filtered back to the bulb. The result is a marvelously strong and rich cup of coffee. There are a lot of little touches to the shop that make it worth a visit. While on the Outer Banks, be sure to check it out.


The Outer Banks Taste of the Beach is coming up at the end of this month. Have you reserved your Brindley Beach Vacations home for the event? Click here to contact us!