Today I took part in the Kansas City Caffeine Crawl. I expected a fairly routine round of visits to coffee shops, but it was actually much more varied and interesting than that.
It started with a demonstration by Stubbie from E.F. Hobbs of how you can roast small batches of coffee at home using small appliances from a thrift store.
We all sampled Kyoto-style cold brewed coffee while we watched. They'd been brewing it since Wednesday!
They divided us into four groups and we all boarded school buses to visit six places each.
Dr. Dave and Alisha were in our group as well. Our first stop was at Quay Coffee in the River Market for a pour-over demonstration and sampling. Someone from the Farmhouse Restaurant was there making French toast for us. Yum!
The next stop was The Roasterie. We toured their plant and sampled coffee that had been processed prior to roasting by three different methods.
By the time we left, I was starting to feel a little buzzed from all the caffeine. Fortunately, our next stop was The Filling Station, which has good sandwiches. I forewent the full tasting of coffee-infused bourbons and beer and ordered lunch instead. I did snag a taste of one of the bourbons and grab one of the chocolate/coffee/bourbon mini cupcakes they offered.
Fortified with a delicious caprese sandwich, I was excited to try Mud Pie Vegan Bakery and Coffeehouse.
The coconut milk chai is perhaps the most delicious drink I've ever had. I could develop a serious addiction to them. They also served a beautiful variety of vegan desserts, but I wasn't really hungry. I managed to eat one strawberry-lemon cupcake, though.
The next stop was Lattéland. We got a lesson on espresso and each tried a single shot paired with a homemade fig pastry. I didn't really dig the straight espresso, but it was interesting to try it.
Our final stop was way out in the suburbs at Revocup. Shop owner Habte Mesfin talked to us about traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremonies and explained the company's goal of improving economic conditions for coffee farmers throughout the world. We were offered different coffees prepared via French press, standard brewing and as espresso. I'd had coffee there before and I knew it would all be good - and it was.
I would show you the photo I took holding one of their adorable espresso cups, but I decided that my manly thumb was too unsightly.
Even though I probably only had the equivalent of about two full cups of coffee, spreading it out throughout the day seemed to intensify the effect. When I got home, I had bursts of house cleaning energy alternating with the desire to lie down. I'm still hoping I can manage to go to sleep at a reasonable hour.
All in all, I had a really nice time and I will definitely go again next year. Kansas City has a very vibrant coffee scene and there are many more coffee shops and roasting facilities I'd like to visit. I'm going to make it a goal to check out some of the ones from Saturday's tour.