~ The Columbus cafe scene brought its A game for the city's second annual Caffeine Crawl ~
,With a great shop lineup of 10 local industry veterans and exciting new additions to the Ohio beverage scene, we kicked off the second annual Caffeine Crawl Columbus with a great Friday night route. 4 Saturday routes and swag bags full of goodies from Chemex, Wholesome, Yelp Columbus, and more set the stage for an incredible weekend exploring Columbus.
Crimson Cup Coffee & Tea welcomed us to their sleek new Innovation Lab for a great presentation on the coffee travels of Brandon Bir, Coffee Sourcing & Education Manager. We sampled a variety of house drinks including a nitro cold brew coffee mocktail with house made syrups, and Chemex brews of The Wayfarer Blend - 2nd place winner of the 2016 America's Best Espresso competition!
Brioso Coffee took us on a subtle tasting tour of three differently processed Costa Rican coffees, plus a coffee stout using the same beans in collaboration with Columbus Brewing Company. We were able to sit family style, and compare notes on the coffees during the exercise.
Boston Stoker provided a well-rounded experience of their offerings, and a trek back in time to the company's beginnings as a tobacco shop in 1973. We sipped several cascara creations, and a single origin coffee brewed via Chemex & French press on Saturday's routes.
Flavor nuances were on the table at One Line Coffee - we sipped multiple Kenya brews prepared using different grind settings and grinder types - from too fine, to too coarse, to the differences between burr and blade grinders. We went home with helpful mini brew guides for continued home bar exploration.
Raccoon Coffee Co. popped up at Oakland Nursery, and served up delicious (secret recipe!) house made chai from their 50's era mobile coffee bar. Jake and Ami shared their story, including the long running joke about Jake's childhood pet raccoons which became the inspiration behind the company's name.
Crawlers discovered local coffee passports from The Columbus Coffee Experience in their swag bags, and several redeemed their visit stamps at Caffeine Crawl stops along their route. The Roosevelt Coffeehouse served up house cold brew and a unique apple crisp latte while sharing their mission: 'good coffee for good,' with a focus on social enterprise impact, providing clean water and fighting hunger and human trafficking.
Stauf's Coffee kicked off a Saturday morning route with a cold brew flight and awesome vibes at their original location - another long-time Columbus roaster, they've been in business since 1988.
We thoroughly enjoyed a traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony at Upper Cup - the owner, Michael Habte, is originally from Eritrea in the horn of Africa, and provides a unique perspective to the local scene with coffee as a foundational part of his childhood and life.
Le Chocoholique served up an espresso truffle and their house go-to coffee beer - a Samuel Adams Nitro Coffee Stout.
Red Velvet Cafe focused on brewing methods across the globe with a Vietnamese Iced Coffee and a Moka Pot brewed Cubano. (We had a sandwich there as well that was top notch!)
Another awesome Caffeine Crawl through Columbus showcased the rich diversity of the city's beverage scene - old school roasters who've been around for decades, still bringing their skill and knowledge alongside awesome new companies innovating and engaging well. A huge thank you to Urnex and all our other sponsors, as well as everyone who attended - we can't wait for Caffeine Crawl Columbus year 3!