Caffeine Crawl St. Louis Brings the Buzz for Year 4

Leftover glasses from cold brew tasting at Sump Coffee.

Another awesome Caffeine Crawl for the books: Crawlers sip their way through the Gateway to the West

By Sadie Cowell
SPECIAL TO BARISTA MAGAZINE

A drizzly weekend, brave bike-route participants, and a line-up of new and veteran shops made Caffeine Crawl St. Louis 2015 a caffeinated success.

A damp but cheerful bike route celebrates their trek through the city in pursuit of caffeine.
A damp but cheerful bike route celebrates their trek through the city in pursuit of caffeine.

Groups kicked off off the day around the city ready to sip, slurp, and caffeinate. The staff at  Kaldi’s Coffee gave us a tour of their sizeable new roasting facility, and served shaken iced Honey Almond Toddies at their Demun location while explaining where the name of their œ700 espresso  originated: It’s the street address of the original roasting facility on Demun. Kayak’s let us œbehind the bar  ”or rather, brought the bar to us ”with hands-on brewing demos and lots of samples.

Brew demos at Kayak's brought the coffee bar to us in a tasty, hands on presentation.
Brew demos at Kayak’s brought the coffee bar to us in a tasty, hands on presentation.
Park Avenue welcome Crawlers to their eco-friendly roasting space with a custom Caffeine Crawl sign.
Park Avenue welcome Crawlers to their eco-friendly roasting space with a custom Caffeine Crawl sign.

At Park Avenue Coffee, we sipped side-by-side samples of cold brew and nitro cold brew, and learned the nuances of eco-friendly roasting while munching fresh baked scones. Chuavin Coffee welcomed groups with Costa Rica La Minita, donuts, and lessons on sourcing and roasting.

Verner explains their time honored sourcing traditions at Chauvin Coffee's roasting facility.
Verner explains their time honored sourcing traditions at Chauvin Coffee’s roasting facility.

Yelp tote bags in hand, Crawlers munched Earnest Eats bars in between stops, and sipped a delightfully fizzy kyoto and tonics with an orange garnish at The Mud House. Chocolatey goodness awaited us at Bissingers, and Kakao served up coffee-studded chocolate samples alongside bourbon barrel aged cold brew from Stringbean Coffee Co.

Refreshing cold brew & tonic was sipped just outside The Mud House.
Refreshing cold brew & tonic was sipped just outside The Mud House.

Northwest Coffee Roasters treated us to a start-to-finish roasting demo, with multiple samples pulled at various stages of the roasting process to demonstrate color change. Taylor from  S P I R I T tea joined us, and we munched orange confit cinnamon rolls and scones at Benton Park Cafe, and learned a little more about the coffee journey at Sump. As a reward for braving the rain showers, the bike-route heroes savored affogatos at Comet Coffee.

Leftover glasses from cold brew tasting at Sump Coffee.
Leftover glasses from cold brew tasting at Sump Coffee.

Blueprint conducted a flavorful experiment involving pineapple, chocolate, tea, and purposely poorly-brewed to demonstrate terms like astringent, bitter, and sweet. On Saturday, they opened their doors after hours for a tasting competition with great prizes, snacks from Mission Taco Joint,  and brews from Boulevard.

Crawlers gathered for a tasty experience exploring flavors at Blueprint Coffee.
Crawlers gathered for a tasty experience exploring flavors at Blueprint Coffee.

Caffeine Crawl Year 4 in The ˜Lou lived up to the great success of earlier years in a big way. There’s just more and more going on coffee-wise  in the Gateway to the West all the time. A  huge thank you goes out to all our sponsors ”including Unic  and  Barista Magazine ”who make this magic possible! St. Louis, you were great, and we’ll see you next year.

 

 

Sadie Bio PicABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brimming with ambition, sarcasm and caffeinated zeal,  Sadie Colwell
 is fascinated by all things beverage and the extraordinary humans behind them. Recently relocated from KCMO to Fort Collins, Colorado, you can find her behind the bar of  Harbinger Coffee  or hunkered down with a cappuccino, fervently planning the next  Caffeine Crawl  or blogging for  The LAB.  When she isn’t traveling to caffeinated cities, she drinks a lot of local beer and lets her dog take her for long, vivacious walks through City Park.  

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