~ Caffeine Crawl year four did not dissapoint - St. Louis brought the heat with hands-on pourovers, roasting demos, cold brew mocktails and more. ~
Kaldi's gave us the full tour of their new Roasting Facility - 3 times the sie of their old one!
At Chauvin Coffee, Crawlers split into two groups to learn about sourcing and the roasting process. Costa Rica La Minita filled cups as we listened, and a few donuts helped counter the caffeine. Benton Park Cafe had a line out the door, but kindly accomodated us ot their patio with delicious orange confit cinnamon rolls, scones and Chauvin cold brew with a housemade espresso caramel sauce.
Park Avenue Coffee welcomed us to their roasting space with nitro and regular cold brew on tap for side by side pairings. We sipped and listened to Dale outline their operations as the most eco-friendly roaster in the midwest, with solar panels producing more energy than they use. An air-roasting demo and house baked treats rounded out our lesson in green coffee roasting (pun intended).
Blueprint Coffee hosted Crawlers en route with an interactive presentation exploring basic tastes like astringent, bitter and sweet. Tasting honey grahams, dark chocolate and pineapple got us comfortable talking about and comparing flavors, and following that with tea and (purposefully) poorly extracted coffee helped us relate those flavor terms to beverages. After hours on Saturday, they opened their doors for a tasting competition and after party complete with snacks from Mission Taco Joint and brews from Boulevard.
The Mud House took it up a notch with a curbside bar and mocktails - Kyoto cold brew with Fever Tree tonic water & orange peel. One of the most creative drinks of the Crawl, we sipped the fizzy goodness and talked shop - their multi-roaster program, history of the space and love of local.
At Northwest Coffee Roasting, we were treated to a roasting demo from start to finish - dishes with beans pulled at various times during the roasting process illustrated color change, and we learned about the full city roasting style over samples of Guatemalan and Indian Monsooned Malabar.
Kakao Chocolate brought the buzz in more ways than one with a boozy Stringbean Coffee Co. bourbon barrel aged Brazil cold brew and coffee-studded chocolate bark.
The sweetness continued at Bissingers Handcrafted Chocolatier with scrumptious housemade hot chocolate, vanilla caramels and a fantastic team of chocolate lovers. Needless to say, we left happy.
The bike route encountered a rain shower or two on their ride across the city, and Comet Coffee served up delicious affogatos in between treks.
At Sump Coffee, Scott showed a slideshow of pictures from his trips to origin while explaining processing and the hard work that goes into the coffee we drink. We sampled two cold brews and explored the shop while pondering the coffee journey.
St. Louis, you were awesome ~ till next year!
~ Join the Conversation ~