The campus alone has several options for those looking for the perfect reading spot or a strong cup of Joe. In the newly renovated MSC, there is a Barnes & Noble shop with a spacious sitting area near their Starbucks coffee bar. The glass walls and bright contemporary furniture give the shop a mod feel. It is very well lit and has a nice variety of cushy comfy seats and tables to appeal to all sorts of potential customers. Whether you are looking to curl up in a large chair, sit down and study at a table, or spend time lounging and chatting with a friend, the Barnes & Noble Starbucks can cater to all needs.
Poor Yorick’s is a coffee bar tucked away in a corner of Evan’s Library on main campus. There is a long bar where customers can sit and drink their coffee or pull out something to work on. Tall and low tables and chairs are also available for the coffee seeker. The best part of this spot is that nearby there is a study area with square booths. The back of the booths has walls that reach about five feet up to block out sound and provide privacy.
Bernie’s café is a cute little place tacked onto the side of Sbisa Diner. With glass display counters and tall stools and tables to sit at, it has a very traditional café feel. Upon walking in, I feel as though I have stepped out of the US and right into England. All of the coffee bars on campus offer many different flavors of ground coffee, a variety of lattes, fresh brewed hot teas, and many more iced or hot drinks. In addition, the on-campus coffee stops offer a variety of food from deli sandwiches to scones and muffins.
Common Grounds is the secret retreat for many freshmen, art lovers, and soul searchers. You can feel it when you walk in. Everyone there is comfortable. Some have retreated from their dorm rooms in above Commons area and others have come on an exploration mission. My favorite thing to do is to sit and people watch. The boy to my left cares way too much about his grades and is frantically studying for a test. The couple to my right looks as though they hate each other and are bound for a break-up any day now. As you look around the shop, you see many people from all different walks of life and many different stories that these people carry.
My favorite is venturing off campus to the established coffee stations scattered throughout the town. Sweet Eugene’s is a classic artsy fartsy coffee house. This is a personal favorite on cold or rainy days. The reason for this is because one wall of the place has floor to ceiling windows that provide a clear view of the outside. It’s the perfect place to come wait out a storm or to watch snow fall as you snuggle up on a velvet…yes velvet…couch with your hot chocolate. This coffee house has six different rooms, each divided from the next with walls that provide some privacy without taking away from the very open feeling. Brick walls and work from beginner artists decorate the walls and the mish-mash style is accomplished with brightly colored and uniquely upholstered furniture. My recommended beverage for Sweet Eugene’s is the Toffee Nut Latte. Bits of floating toffee in the milky coffee drink send it from mediocre to unbelievably delicious.
Mugwalls on Harvey Road has changed names and owners a few times over the years, but more recently has really taken off in popularity. This site allows you to order your drink downstairs and take it upstairs to couches or chairs to enjoy! Sitting areas are also available in the downstairs area and the new room purchased by Mugwalls directly behind the main shop across the courtyard. Outside seating is available in the back or front and live music is sometimes held in the spacious courtyard.
If I had to pick a favorite drink in town, hands down it would be Muldoon’s Al Monde Latte. This chocolaty latte with a hint of sweet almond is the perfect pick-me-up during draining hours of computer work. The ambiance in this coffee shop isn’t at all bad either. Couches and plush chairs are placed here and there, and there is no shortage of tables. In the center of the area is a large column decorated by iridescent tiles. The shop has a very African feel to it and the décor consists of giraffe statues and painted hanging lights. In the back a nook is cut out of the back wall and the few steps up into this private place give the feeling of entering a secret tree-house. And one of the most exciting parts of this place is the connecting gourmet cupcake shop, Crush. Crush cupcakes are sold at the Muldoon’s counter as well as in the adjoining cupcake shop.
And of course you can’t forget Starbucks. The Bryan, College Station area has four stand-alone locations that I know of, not to mention the locations inside of Kroger, Target and Barnes & Noble. Recently, Starbucks came out with passion berry and cool lime refreshers to kill the summer heat. These light drinks are actually made with green coffee beans. Coffee gets its flavor from roasting the coffee bean. The longer the bean it roasted, the stronger (or bolder) the flavor. So without roasting the bean, all of the natural caffeine goes into the drink without any of the coffee flavor.
Clearly there is no shortage of coffee or reading spots in this town.
Susan Hilton (979)764-2100
CENTURY 21 Beal, Inc.