The 5 Kinds of Coffee Drinkers in Athens
Coffee is the lifeblood of many a college student. They may need it to kick a hangover, power through an all-nighter, or — for the truly addicted — to avoid going through caffeine withdrawal. In Athens, there are plenty of options for coffee drinkers to fuel up with. So how does one choose? After spending some time exploring latte options and talking to regulars at various shops, I came to a conclusion: it depends on the person. Below are the five kinds of coffee drinkers I discovered.
1. The Academic — Brenen’s
Snuggled between the bricks of Court Street is Brenen’s, a café and coffee shop that always seems to be filled with customers. At one table, Kristin Conrad sits among piles of papers, books and a laptop. She stretches and takes a sip of her espresso, the Tuesday drink special.
Conrad is a grad student at Ohio University, a population known for having a heavy workload. “If I want to be productive, I’ll come here. Donkey is a little too comfortable,” said Conrad. Other customers agree with Conrad — many tables were littered with textbooks, flashcards and computers. For students who are looking to study, Brenen’s seems to be the place.
2. The Dorm Dweller — The Front Room
On the fourth floor of Baker Center, The Front Room is central to Ohio University’s campus. Many students pass through Baker every day, especially those coming from West Green. Front Room is unique among the other shops on this list, because customers can use meal plan perks to purchase their drinks. Underclassmen, who typically have meal plans, will find this very enticing. Another draw is the kind of coffee they serve — Starbucks. If you have some extra Bobcat Cash or are craving a Frappuccino, head to The Front Room.
3. The Business Professional — Court Street Coffee
Holly Goldberg, an Ohio University junior and management major in the College of Business, sits in front of her laptop. She takes a sip of her Court Street Mocha, the shop’s signature drink.
As Goldberg furiously types, she says, “Court Street [Coffee] is my go-to; it’s right next to Copeland, where I am literally living this semester because of cluster.” Dressed in fashionable printed pants and a blazer, she is finishing up the final touches on a presentation she will give in just a couple hours. All College of Business students are required to complete the ‘Business Cluster,’ which gives students a chance to solve real-world problems for a company.
Court Street Coffee’s location next door to Copeland Hall, home to the College of Business, makes it a prime spot for future accountants, marketers, managers and human resources employees. When these hard workers need a caffeine boost, Court Street Coffee has their back.
4. The Locavore — The Fluff
Like many places in Athens, The Fluff puts a focus on serving fresh and local foods. They are a partner of the 30 Mile Meal initiative, which works to bring local ingredients to restaurants and cafes. The restaurant also features artwork from Passion Works Studio, a local art studio that allows artists with and without disabilities to creatively express themselves. Grabbing a caffeine boost from The Fluff is an easy way to support small businesses in the Athens community.
As soon as you open the door to The Fluff, you feel welcomed. Workers greet you with friendly smiles, beautiful pastries entice you from behind the counter, and scents of freshly brewed coffee drift past your nostrils. Locavores can also grab a quick meal at Fluff made from ingredients they can feel good about.
5. The Artist — Donkey Coffee
Just past the bustling Court Street lies Donkey Coffee. Large overstuffed chairs provide the perfect place to catch up with friends, while tables are scattered around for those looking to study. Elise Mills, a junior at Ohio University, hangs out at Donkey whenever she gets a chance. “I love the vibes at Donkey. It’s so cozy and I love the foam art they do on their lattes,” Mills said.
If you find yourself at Donkey on a Thursday, hang around and hear some live music at their weekly Open Stage. On Tuesday nights the shop has ‘Designated Space,’ featuring poetry, prose and spoken word acts. See a full calendar of events here. “You really get exposed to a lot of talent here,” Mills said, “I’ve really gotten into poetry since I started coming to Designated Space last semester.”
The coffee shops of Athens are diverse, just like the students that call this town home. Whether you’re looking to study, catch up with friends or see some live music, there’s a place for you. Where’s your favorite shop? Why do you go there? Let me know in the comments!