Caffeine Crawl Houston proved the city has one of the next best coffee scenes
BY SADIE RENEE
SPECIAL TO BARISTA MAGAZINE
Houston has a seriously underrated coffee culture, and Caffeine Crawl year three in H-Town proved it again with a fantastic 14-shop lineup and a Crawl that sold out over a month before the event. Thursday night kicked off the caffeinated weekend with a latte art throwdown, good eats from new local pop-up Hot Bird, and good vibes at Ahh, Coffee! Local barista competitors went pitcher to pitcher with pours worthy of a great prize lineup from event sponsors, including swag from InterAmerican Coffee, Prana Chai, and more.
The following day, Friday Crawl routes included an afternoon stroll through Montrose, and a evening route for 9-to-5ers, both of which were awesome. Southside Espresso offered spiced honey butter macchiatos and a Yemen pourover from their own processing mill, and Paper Co. served up an El Salvador brew with toast. New additions to the lineup this year included Tout Suite, where Crawlers enjoyed a housemade chai, and Common Bond Café and Bakery, where we participated in a guided tea cupping and wound down with a twist on a coffee negroni using rosemary-infused cold brew. Honeymoon Cafe & Bar wrapped up the Friday night route with coffee cocktails: Boomtown roasted Mexican single origin coffee and Four Roses Bourbon.
Saturday brought the buzz with a bike route (led by the InterAmerican Coffee crew) kicking off at Retrospect Coffee Bar. With their (historically significant and very cool) cafe not quite open, they hosted a pop up at Axelrad Beer Garden, serving Katz Coffee Mexican cold brew, Honeychild’s Sweet Creams frozen custard, and housemade crepes and cereal.
Mercantile served cold brew and iced chai made with Mill King milk, and Red Dessert Dive (another new stop this year) offered affogatos using a housemade Saint Arnold Brewing ice cream and Boomtown espresso. While Crawlers sipped macchiatos, Matt from Boomtown Coffee offered insight into their roasting works at The Honeymoon, and John of Argus Coffee Co. explained the process behind their whiskey barrel aged coffee at Ahh, Coffee!
After placing at the recent U.S. Barista Championships Qualifying Event, David Buehrer served his signature ˜breakfast macchiato’ at Blacksmith Coffee, and Siphon Coffee demoed siphon brewing alongside housemade salted chocolate chip cookies. Robin Berwick and Robin Whalan served Papua New Guinea cold brew and samples of housemade coffee liqueur at Double Trouble Caffeine and Cocktails, and two different iced tea samples with a take-home bag of Amaya Roasting Caffeine Crawl blend coffee awaited at Catalina Coffee.
Crawlers went home happy (and caffeinated!) with swag bags filled with goodies from Wholesome Sweeteners, Yelp Houston, Prana Chai, Local Houston Magazine, roaster sponsors and participating shops. The LAB team enjoyed connecting with new Crawl shops, as well as the (also highly underrated) Houston cocktail scene after Crawl hours, and we can’t wait for next year!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brimming with ambition, sarcasm, and caffeinated zeal, Sadie Renee is fascinated by all things beverage and the extraordinary humans that make them. A KCMO native loving life in Fort Collins, Colo., she spends most of her time drinking extravagant amounts of coffee and planning the next Caffeine Crawl for The LAB. When she’s not on a plane to a beverage destination, you can find her conducting research at a local brewery or pouring the occasional latte behind the bar at Everday Joe’s Coffehouse. After she lets her dog take her for a long, vivacious walk around the neighborhood, she likes to soak up some mountain magic and wind down with a good cocktail.