The Ultimate Coffee Road Trip Across the United States.
This week: Maryland to Pennsylvania
Editor’s note: We began publishing reports from Don Niemyer about the cafes he visited on his cross-country coffee tour back in the summer of 2013, and we’ve loved following his journey, learning about amazing coffeehouses out there in the United States, ever since. We’ll be publishing reports from Don about his recent journey around the Central and Northern states every Saturday this fall. To catch up on Don’s earlier posts about his explorations of coffee culture throughout the Western United States, click HERE. Following are links to Don’s posts from this current Saturday Series:
Part 1: Oregon to Amarillo, Texas
Part 2: Oklahoma to South Dakota
Part 3: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Part 4: Wisconsin to Michigan
Part 5: Chicago, Illinois
Part 6: Indiana to Washington, D.C.
Part 7: Virginia to Florida
Special Edition: The Big Central Coffee Competitions in Minneapolis, Minnesota
We hope you continue to enjoy Don’s reports as much as we do!
By Don Niemyer
SPECIAL TO BARISTA MAGAZINE
Did you ever learn something you already knew? Boy, I have. Over and over again in this life, I am exposed to information that I actually was already aware of, but seeing it again brings another level of clarity to my understanding. That happened for me in a historical sense as we made our way up from D.C. to Philly. We took the obligatory trip down to see the Liberty Bell, and then made our way over to Independence Hall, where we œlearned how Philadelphia was actually the first national capital, serving in that capacity until Washington, D.C. was established. Now, like I say, I actually had already learned this, but something about being there made it really come alive, and it seemed more like I was learning about it for the first time instead of hearing something I had previously learned. It was really fantastic.
Truth is, the only way to learn something really well is to be repeatedly exposed to the information or experience until it works its way into the depths of your being. No one is an expert at something because they did it once. You become an expert by doing or studying a thing for years. Which makes me think about our experience this week on the Rialta Coffee Tour. Often we are visiting new cafés and reporting their existence to the world, which is a cool thing that we’re honored to do. But sometimes ”like this week ”we get a string of shops that are seasoned veterans. Folks who have been doing this for years and bring a really thorough understanding of coffee to the table for our collective enjoyment and benefit. Wanna see these excellent cafés? Be our guest!
Thanks for taking a look at some of the seasoned pros on the east coast with us this week! Next week we’ll edge right on up until we hit Portland, Maine, completing the Portland to Portland aspect of our journey. We’ll have that report for you right here next Saturday, so be sure to check back! Until then, follow us at our social media sites, or at DonNiemyer.com. See you soon!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Don Niemyer used to own three coffee shops in Portland, Ore., where he and his wife Carissa spent 8 years immersed in the excellent coffee culture there, milking it like a dairy cow for every drop of expertise it would give them, making lots of friends, doing some USBC judging, and learning all they could. One day, they decided to move their kids closer to family, so they bought a tiny RV, moved into it, and have been œmoving to Colorado ever since, visiting coffee shops, practicing minimalism, and having lots of fun. That was over two years ago. One of these days, they might even end up living in Colorado.