“V-o-o-d-o-o Economics. Voodoo Economics.”

July 28, 2009

Alice...in Fireland.

Alice...in Fireland.

As you may have gathered from my absence, it’s been an eventful week. This included bluegrass weddings, Alice in Fire-land, a rockin’ Minnesota bluesman, and a Northwest heatwave from hell. Let’s skip all that and get to the important stuff: the coffee shops. There have been several this week, after all. I’ve also begun cataloging my coffee adventures on the “My Life in Caffeine” page, so give it a looksee if you like more info on some of the spots I’ve graced with my lazy, loitering self.


What does it mean!?!?

Mugs ahoy!

Mugs Coffee Company on Urbanspoon
The grammatically puzzling Mugs Coffee drew me in by engaging my curiosity most actively. What on EARTH can it possibly mean? There’s no apostrophe, so the owner’s name can’t be “Mug.” There’s no preposition “of,” so clearly we’re not implying a number of mugs of coffee. Finally, there’s the generic signage. It’s like they’re daring me not to be interested. Well, Mugs is new to town, but they’re certainly firing on all cylinders, offering sandwiches, milkshakes, and a damned good chai. They’ve also got a host of events on their schedule including acoustic music night and bellydancers. They’ve also got Voodoo Donuts and wi-fi, and that certainly can’t hurt their popularity. Best of luck to them.

Just imagine it at 3:47 AM...

Just imagine it at 3:47 AM...

Southeast Grind on Urbanspoon
Southeast Grind on Powell has managed to accomplish what even The Fresh Pot adjacent to Powell’s couldn’t do: I actually regretted being outside of Portland. They are my first 24-hour coffee shop discovery and I couldn’t be happier. They’ve also got wi-fi, some killer vintage tech going on (oh, if only you cloud see the size of those monitors!), and art of all flavors on display. Check-minus on the parking situation though. They’re a double-only espresso institution, and vegan as well. They also proudly display their core values: local, healthy, organic, sustainable, and vegan.  Oh, and they’ve got Voodoo donuts and a freakin’ fireplace as well.

I'd raise kittens here.

I'd raise kittens here.

My new favorite at the moment, however, is the cleverly hidden Marcell’s Latte House on Columbia Ave. and 31st in Vancouver, WA. It’s off the strip of Main St. businesses, so if you’ve never heard of it, you probably would never find it. It’s basically a house-turned-café that’s got the best of both. They’ve got food, beer, wine, coffee, tea, wi-fi, a full wall of books, a back porch, live music shows, a Thursday afternoon bluegrass jam, and more space than I know what to do with. The back room, which is still unfinished, may hold even more surprises including a music stage. If they had AC and were open 24 hours, it would a flawless establishment of caffeine culture.

*****08/17 Update!**** Marcell’s actually has two(!) fireplaces and a back room with a stage and piano. Yes, this place rocks.****
*****Dec. 2009 Update!***** Most tragically, Marcell’s Latte House has fallen victim to fire, and is no longer with us. You will be missed!*****

Oh, and for the record: House of Donuts in Lakewood, WA will wipe the floor with Voodoo Donuts any day of the week and twice on Sunday.

“Coffee: helps you do stupid things faster with more energy.


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