31 December 2012

my last coffee of 2012

this is the last cup of coffee i'll be having in 2012.

it is a delicious cup of las rosas, from verve.
(a christmas gift from daughter #1)

so long 2012, you've been a flavorful year but i am looking forward to the tastes and aromas that await me in 2013.

28 December 2012

christmas cheer

me & my pop sharing some holiday cheer, in the form of cups of coffee :)
merry christmas daddy!

26 December 2012

07 December 2012

rip van wafels

sitting atop my cup of coffee is a rip van wafels. it is a thin waffel sandwich filled with caramel. the amsterdam way is to sit it atop your "koffie" to warm the caramel filling. i've never been to amsterdam but that's what the package says :)
though they are not made in amsterdam, the company was started by a native dutchman.

03 December 2012

the beatles

i haven't been to any new coffee shops lately so i thought i'd share a picture i found on the internet. whilst these lads may have been drinking tea, i prefer to think they were drinking coffee.

26 October 2012

the nautical bean

on our journey back home from monterey, we stopped at the nautical bean in san luis obispo. unfortunately it was raining and we couldn't enjoy their cozy front patio. they also have a back patio and plenty of indoor seating. they are located in the laguna village shopping center, so there is plenty of parking too. we took our coffee to go and headed south.

tattoo style koi fish on their front door

nutty bean turbo for hubby, gold medal for me

but before leaving slo, we stopped at the madonna inn to grab a yummy sweet and to purchase some of their signature goblets.

aren't they pretty?

25 October 2012

coffee w/ bailey #29: archie's american diner

while in monterey, we didn't have time to go to an actual coffee shop, so we had coffee with our dinner at archie's american diner. what a cute diner! we didn't go inside because of the doggies, but the outside was adorable and we placed our order at the window!

they serve tully's coffee there. the guy brewed us a fresh pot of (pre-ground, pre-packaged) coffee, but we were cold and that was better than nothing. at that point as long as it was hot, it was fine with me.
bailey didn't mind the weather as long as she's wrapped up in her nice, warm blankie :)

this is the "coffee" our hotel supplied. have you ever made hotel coffee?

24 October 2012

coffee w/ bailey #28: java station

on our way up to monterey, we made a pit stop at the java station in santa barbara. we had been driving a few hours and it was time to caffeinate ourselves for the 2nd leg of our journey. as you can see it is a very colorful coffee house. it is not in downtown and is pretty much off the beaten path. if i hadn't mapped it out prior to leaving home, we would never have just stumbled upon it.

these are the brews we picked. kona blend for me & daughter #1 and firehouse for hubby.

the inside was quite large with a beautiful fireplace to warm your bones on the colder days & nights. there was plenty of seating inside & out and lots of parking too.

bailey's favorite spot is resting on daddy's lap.

"time to go already?"

we didn't have time to finish our coffee there because we were on a schedule and we had to make it to monterey before nightfall. with coffee in hand, we continue our journey.

08 October 2012

drive-thru coffee!

on our coffee adventure last weekend, we stumbled across a couple of little drive-thru shops that we just didn't have time for but i made note of them and we will return and give them a try on our next trip to san diego county.

the first cutie we found was the quick fix in encinitas. it looks like it used to be a fotomat store. does anyone remember those or am i dating myself again??? they were teeny little kiosks built in parking lots that would sell kodak film (remember film?) and would develop your photos overnight. i think this is the teeniest little coffee shop i have ever seen. i can't imagine anything being smaller! i think the table and chairs out front is the icing on the coffee cake! absolutely adorable.

the quick fix, encinitas ca

the second cutie was better buzz in san marcos. if you're in a hurry you can drive thru or if you feel like taking it easy, you can go to the walk up window and caffeinate yourself al fresco on their patio.

better buzz, san marcos ca

what's the farthest you will travel for a good cup of coffee?

05 October 2012

coffee w/ bailey #27: ryan bros coffee

our weekend of coffee has come to a close, so on our way home, we stopped in temecula for one last coffee at ryan bros coffee. what sets this shop apart from the others is that they also serve wine and have wine tasting events, which makes perfect sense since temecula is southern california's wine country.

they have stores in san diego, san marcos & temecula, though i don't know if wine is available in all locations. you can get a small, served from a pump pot for $1.55 and they have free wi-fi. our experience here was average. maybe it's because our morning coffee was exceptional or maybe it's because they are only average.

they share a large patio space with chipotle, which you can see just beyond the little gate in the picture below. they also have a couple of tables in the corridor so you have your choice of complete or partial open air.

ryan bros coffee, temecula ca

04 October 2012

coffee w/ bailey #26: the blue mug

day two's first stop was at blue mug in escondido. wow. this place was very cool. i have been to a lot coffee shops but i have never been to a coffee shop like this before. when you first walk in the door, you see the counter with 18 glass jars of beans. each jar is labeled with the bean and a flavor description. you choose your bean, they grind it and brew it for you in their pour over brew bar. i had the italian and hubby had the sumatra.

i asked for 2 small coffees, expecting them to be the standard 12 oz, but to my surprise, their "small" is 16 ounces; and it was only $2.40! their next size up, the large, is 20 ounces for only $2.50! this was the bargain of the weekend for sure. their coffee is supplied by santa cruz coffee roasting and did i mention, they have free wi-fi?

the shop is l-shaped which allows for a pretty good size outdoor patio. it was extremely relaxing and the coffee was delicious. as you can see, we made ourselves right at home :)

the shop is pushed back from the street. you won't see it just driving by, so you don't have the traffic sights and sounds interfering with your coffee experience. if you are a local, or just passing through town, this place is a must go to.

blue mug, escondido ca

03 October 2012

coffee w/ bailey #25: surfdog's java hut

our second coffee of the day was at surfdog's java hut, also in encinitas. this was very different from our first stop at the lofty bean. the java hut has their pre-brewed coffee in pump pots and when i asked the employee what kind of coffee they had, she only said it was a medium roast. what i wanted to know is was it organic? fair trade? african? south american? is it fruity? nutty? tell me a little more about the bean. possibly she didn't know so she didn't offer any more info. after she pumped our cups, she took the pot to the back so i guess we got the end of it. too bad we weren't a bit earlier so we could've gotten a fresher cup.

the shop was really cute; very beachy. the awning outside is like a grass hut with sea life painted on the outside walls. inside has a surf board hanging on the wall and a mosaic of a sea turtle on the floor. there were several tables outside but only one of them had customers when we arrived.

all in all, this place is best for the ambiance. to us, the coffee was just ok. you really can tell the difference between freshly ground and brewed coffee versus getting your coffee out of a pre-brewed pump pot. check back later to see what coffee experiences awaited us on sunday.

java hut, s coast highway 101, encinitas ca

02 October 2012

coffee w/ bailey #24: the lofty bean

this past weekend was dedicated to bailey and to finding a great cup of coffee. i had mapped out several coffee shops before we left home so we wouldn't waste any time. we drove down to encinitas saturday morning for our first cup of coffee.

our first stop was at the, very dog friendly, lofty bean. there was even a dog inside the store! the barista reached under the counter and handed him a cookie without even batting an eye. when we got there, the line was out the door! it took quite a while to get this shot with no people in the way.

each cup is brewed when it is ordered and the brew methods they offer are french press ($2.00), pour over ($3.95) and the syphon ($6.50). this photo shows their selections for the day. (we had the pour over honduras capucas.)

bailey enjoyed the early morning sunshine as we sipped our coffee and planned our day. next on our agenda is fun time for bailey. we are taking her to the beach!

the lofty bean is located on the corner of n coast highway 101 & a st, in the lofts at moonlight beach. we will definitely be back. the staff was very friendly and there seemed to be a lot of regulars. even the customers knew each other!

the lofty bean, encinitas ca

25 September 2012

coffee w/ bailey #23: charlie's coffee house

there's a new coffee shop in town! charlie's coffee house opened last year in the quaint little town of south pasadena.

they brew jameson brown coffee, which is roasted locally in pasadena. i had the house coffee which had hints of almond, cherry & chocolate. it was quite good. i also tried their giant chocolate chip cookie, which wasn't very sweet and a little overpriced. i didn't notice a price tag on the shelf, so i got a bit of sticker shock when it rang up at $3.00. note to self: next time, no cookie.

picture source: yelp

there is plenty of seating inside and out plus a comfy little loft upstairs. on the side of the building there is a little courtyard with a couple of tables and a staircase to the loft area. on the day we visited, all the inside seating was taken, but since we had doggies, we enjoyed the courtyard area.

picture source: yelp

parking is pretty limited in the little lot so you're better off trying to find street parking. there is a cute little lawn area set aside for the doggies to do their business, which is a really nice touch, and very much appreciated.

the barista was very friendly and made us feel right at home. he even brought out a bowl of fresh water for our doggies. bailey was too busy enjoying lap time but aoife went right for it!

if you are looking for a change of scenery, and who isn't these days, add this place to your list of go to coffee shops; plus they have free wi-fi!

corner of monterey rd & pasadena ave, south pasadena
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