Coffee shops are the best and living in Austin is the best, so it only makes sense if I made a bucket list of coffee shops I wanted to try around Austin before I graduate right? Although I've been here three years already, I haven't even crossed off half of these places yet...so you know where to find me senior year!! Well this summer I was just studying for my MCAT and working, so I had a chance to visit some places.
The first picture above is from Cafe Medici on North Lamar. I've only been inside the Cafe Medici close to campus once because it's always packed and it's too noisy for me. Parking was pretty easy since it's by the Alamo Drafthouse and you can just park there. I really liked the vibe of this coffee shop because it wasn't noisy. There was background music playing but it wasn't too distracting. They had a steady flow of people coming and going, but it wasn't too crowded so luckily it was pretty easy to find a place to study! I also liked it because it closes at 10 pm, so it's not as early as some places. However, on a week where I have midterms, l'm not sure if I would come here unless I get there early...because let's be honest, 10 pm means the night is still young for studying. They had a barista that had a British accent though, so that's always a plus and their coffee was pretty strong which I really liked!
The next place I had a chance to visit was Summer Moon on S. 1st. I've been hearing this place from my mentee, Hannah, and I finally had a chance to visit! It was kind of hard to find parking in the front, but luckily they also had parking in the back as long as you don't park where the residence parking spots are or you'll get towed. This place was really popular even during the summer! Their coffee was good and I had a chance to taste their moon milk and it was really sweet. The barista told me their specialty coffee has it too. They had a really friendly barista that was really willing to help us which I really liked. Since it was kind of packed, it was kind of hard to find a seat that we were comfortable in so my friend Laura and I just sat by the doors. However, the moment one of the tables in a higher level opened up, we moved right away where we got to sit facing the doors. That spot I definitely liked better because it had its own outlet (which is always a plus) and it was quieter compared to sitting by the doors. They also had an outdoor seating area which looked cool, but it was way too hot for that. I really liked the cozy environment with the lights hanging and I can see myself visiting again since it closes at midnight!
Russell's Bakery & Coffee Bar has definitely been one of my favorites mainly because I really enjoyed that muffin I ate! I also really liked it because it's also a bakery and I LOVE sweets so there were a lot of options for desserts as well as coffee. Russell's Bakery was pretty close to campus and definitely close if you live in the Far West apartment area. The music wasn't too distracting and even though there weren't many people, I noticed that people don't usually go there to study. The people I noticed that day were just there to have a meeting, to catch up with an old friend or on a cute coffee date, so there was a lot more chatter than I expected. Still though, I really liked how they had a lot of huge tables and there was easy access to parking! The only downside is that they close at 8 pm during the week and 5 pm on weekends, so I'm not sure if this would be on my list to come back again during the school year because of the time constraint. I will probably come back to try more of their desserts though because they had really cute longhorn shaped cookies!
Houndstooth Coffee. This place was very minimalistic and that's what I really loved about it. I also really like their wall and just how the entire place was decorated. Sorry for the low quality picture, it was pouring in Austin that day, but that's the best weather for being at a coffee shop right? I had their cold brew which wasn't too strong, but I really liked it! It wasn't too noisy either and this sounds silly, but I really liked how I didn't get "college-y" vibes from the place mostly because the people who came and went weren't really college students, so it was a nice break from the PCL. Depending on how busy that area is (there were also restaurants and other places connected to Houndstooth), parking shouldn't be too bad! The only downside again is that Houndstooth closes at 9 pm. However, if your classes end early, it's definitely a nice place to visit to get away since it's pretty close to campus!
Last but not least, I had a chance to catch up with one of my friends (thanks Elaine for this not-so-candid photo of me) at this cute, kind of hidden place Figure 8. You have to park on the streets since there's not a designated parking lot, but other than that it was really nice. I think I had an iced green tea, but I'm not really sure. I just really like how it came in a mason jar! There weren't many people when I was there, so there were a lot of places to sit and I did spot a couple who did bring backpacks so it's definitely a quiet place to get work done! I really liked how hidden away it was because I would always drive by Chicon St. and I never noticed it. I really should have though because it's a cute blue building! They close at 10 pm so it's definitely on the list to go back and visit during the school year, maybe not during midterms time though.
Hopefully I'll be able to visit more of the coffee shops on my list. It's just hard whenever some places close at 5 or 6 pm and I don't even get done with classes/meetings until like 8, so maybe during the weekend for sure. Also if anyone has suggestions on coffee shops I should add to my list, please feel free to email me or leave a comment! I will also post more pictures from other coffee shops I've visited the past three years, but I probably won't give a detailed reviews since I probably won't remember all the details!