I continue to amaze myself, because this is my twentieth column. You know how I manage to write a thesis, do my classwork, and contribute to the Quest each week? Coffee. it’s the breakfast of champions, yo. We run on it. If we, as a generation, hadn’t been named a thousand times over, we could be the starbucks generation. Coffee has been surfing the wave of gourmet revolution that has been sweeping the nation. Remember the good old days when you didn’t know Emeril Lagasse and Martha Stewart was confined to a magazine, not a minimum-security prison? It all really started with grunge and the Seattle Latte.
Now, it’s easier to find a latte than a burger. What was once Nescafé nation is now rife with roasteries, coffee shops, and those annoying little roadside stands that look like overgrown port-o-johns.
The best part of coffee culture is that save the green-headed monster and a few others, coffee shops tend to be local operations. Coffee-culture is a big part of Portland, and a really fun way to see the city. Neighborhood coffeeshops are great ways to get the feel for different neighborhoods here. Portland is, at its core, a city of neighborhoods. They are also often great places to study, hang out, apply for jobs, and neutral places for all you crazies who do that friendster-dating thing. Of course, this list will be incomplete. Nevertheless, here are some places that serve up a mean cuppa joe:
K & F cafe: 2706 SE 26TH Ave. K & F is in the heart of the tiny Clinton St. district. They make great coffee in a really funky neighborhood. Spitting distance away is the Red and Black Cafe, which is there just for you crazy anarchists. There is even a starbucks across the street towards which you can channel you anger while you sip your joe.
Just up division is the closest outpost of the Stumptown variety, on 45th and Division. (there is another on 3rd and Belmont) If there were a Nobel Prize for coffee, they’d win it. Damn fine coffee, it is. Hipster-filled to the point of nausea, it is. Worth it anyway? yes. Tiny’s, on the corner of 12th and Hawthorne, is a great little place, with free Wi-fi and pinball. PINBALL. There are a ton of other places on Hawthorne as well. There is the Pied Cow, which is a hooka-coffee-date place, so i wouldn’t try studying there.
There is Beulahland on NE 28th, just off Burnside. When you go there, ask about the name. Speaking of Burnside, on the corner at 23rd is the Burnside Bean coffee club. Another dessert and coffee place is Marsee baking, 935 NE Broadway St. There is the Fresh Pot, on Mississippi, and a really funky one on Alberta and 30th that I can’t find in the yellow pages anywhere.
I’d go on to the other side of the river, but no one needs more than 500 words on coffee. least of all me. I’ve got an ulcer.