Sunshine, caffeine, creative people behind espresso machines - does it get better than Caffeine Crawl San Diego 2015?
We were staying in Little Italy, so we walked to Juniper and Ivy for a fancy girls-night-out...
...and let me just tell you 'bout those biscuits. When they say "left coast cookery," they mean it, and whoever came up with this smoked, buttered crockery of gratification, well...we would like to meet them and express our thanks. Since this is BeverageLife, not BiscuitLife, we'll leave it at that, and point out that the (butternut squash ravioli and) cocktails were also excellent, and we greatly appreciated the tropical flower garnish.
We hopped on a train to Encinitas, and spent the 40 minute ride along the coast making last minute phone calls and wondering why everyone doesn't live in Southern California.
Matt and Raul opened their doors ahead of schedule for Caffeine Crawl Encinitas, and welcomed us to Ironsmith Coffee Roasters with flashbrewed Ethiopian pourovers on ice, local cookies and big smiles. An informative slideshow on coffee brewing techniques was narrated by Matt, and Raul handed out samples as we admired the Slayer espresso machine and the local art on the walls.
An old railway station turned cafe, Pannikin was nostalgic and cozy, and the smell of roasting beans wafted through the floor boards as we made our way downstairs. Helena shared roasting insight while Sean and Dempsey answered questions, and we tasted two different Ethiopian coffees roasted similarly to highlight natural flavor differences. We polished off our samples and soaked up the caffeine with hearty house made muffins.
Collaboration took center stage at Coffee Coffee (formerly Cafe Ipe), as roasters Dan and Scott demonstrated Revolution Roasters' farm-to-cup process with a batch tumbling aromatically in the Probat behind them. Victor, their producer from Brazil, gave insight into coffee processing, and we sampled the finished product with plenty of caffeinated questions rolling off our tongues.
A train ride back to Little Italy and beers at Bottlecraft rounded out a truly magical day, and we called it a night in anticipation of another high energy day of great coffee and awesome people.
To be continued...
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