Why coffee is my jam//
Literally one of the BEST, most exhilarating parts about traveling for me is NEW COFFEE SHOPS!!!!! Amirite tho!? Most people are probably hyped about the beach, sight seeing, and food, and yes while all of those things are valued to me, I looove adventuring into new coffee shops. I research the area extensively, looking for unique elements about the environment of the shop, what are their signature drinks, what syrups are in house, etc. It’s kinda like a first date. I creep on their Insta to make sure they’re legit and then I show up. After doing this a copious amount of times over the 5 years coffee has stolen my heart, there are 4 things that stand out to me that I look for in a coffee shop:
In house syrups!!!! I love trying new drinks from different shops and extremely value syrups that they hand make themselves. This is 99.9% of the time the first question I ask a barista. “Hello nice human making my fuel, are your syrups in house or nah?” I don’t want to go to a place that uses syrups you can buy at the grocery store that has a bunch of fake ish in it. Ain’t nobody got time for that nonsense. What I want is to try homemade banana syrup. Homemade mocha syrups that they melt real chocolate chips and add their own fresh ingredients. Call me boujee but this has drastically changed my coffee experience.
Atmosphere!!!! I love shops that I can get some WERK done! I love being able to camp out somewhere for hours to edit, read my bible, or meet a sweet friend. I want to be invited into the shop with the cozy vibes, natural light from the windows, and simplicity in the layout of the place. It’s calming and encourages me to be productive. Just think, if the atmosphere fosters community there it’s somewhere you are going to have deep conversations at because you are comfy there. It’s somewhere you are going to want to take old friends visiting to or even family.
Barista interaction!! I don’t want you to just be my barista, I want you to be my friend! I know not everyone is extroverted AF as me BUT does it not make your day when your barista is kind? Ordering a drink (or two or three, no shame) and interacting with baristas can completely make my day. I love meeting new people who mutually have a passion for coffee, hearing their stories, and getting to share my own life. This has allowed me to make friends at multiple coffee shops which is awesome because you become a regular. Nothing is a better feeling then when baristas at a shop know your regular order or the fact that you always choose dairy alternative milk lol.
Community!!! Community. Community. Community. This is by far one of the biggest things to change my prospective on coffee and change my life in more ways than I realized. Back in 2013 little Phoe decided to apply to a coffee shop without even have had a sip of coffee. It was a Christian coffee shop that emphasized coffee bringing community. I worked there four years and experienced God in a whole new way; endless deep talks in the kitchen, being showered in grace when I messed something up, hugs and my bosses praying over me on hard days, hours of working on homework there (AKA talking to my friends who were working), bible studies with my now husband, endless coffee dates with friends, and a new profound love for coffee and being able to rip espresso shots without flinching. Being at a coffee shop that facilitates this authentic community is so so special. It’s rare, and especially in a world where money can be our god. Find yourself a place that you can call home. A place you can cry with a friend at. A place where you feel like you can be yourself. A place where warm memories are created and make you smile when you look back on them. A place where they value customers coming in. For me, this place is Greyhouse Coffee Supply in West Lafayette, Indiana.
I love you a latte, coffee.
(Commissary Barber and Barista, downtown Indy)