Tag Archives: neighborhood

#ElCafeDe2013 Coffee tip of the week: Give it a Kick!

I’ve previously talked about enhancing a coffee by Going Irish! If your looking for an addition to your coffee and the opportunity is there, there should be a more general rule of

Tip #15: …giving it a kick!

A favorite place to get a coffee with a kick for me is Koffie Cafe in the Ohio City neighborhood of Cleveland.

Koffie Cafe, Ohio City neighborhood, Cleveland

Koffie Cafe, Ohio City, Cleveland

There is a relaxing, friendly neighborhood atmosphere inside.

Koffie Cafe, Ohio City neighborhood, Cleveland

Koffie Cafe, Ohio City, Cleveland

It’s a great place to get some work done or hangout while exploring West Side Market and one of the oldest neighborhoods in Cleveland.

Koffie Cafe, Ohio City neighborhood, Cleveland

The last coffee with an addition I had there was a Kahlua & Coffee yum.

On a winter day during the holiday season a peppermint stick coffee with Bailey’s in a fancy mug definitely hits the spot.

Bailey's Coffee, Koffie Cafe, Cleveland, Ohio

For non-alcoholic coffee options, the Turtle Latte and Brown Sugar Cinnamon Latte are must gets. You could go the kick route with these and get extra espresso! πŸ™‚

Koffie Cafe, Ohio City, Cleveland

Next time you’re in a coffeehouse around home or in your travels consider getting a coffee with a kick.

Toronto: Stumbling Into “The” Coffee Drink!

Prior to my recent trip to Toronto I came up with a plan of attack for diving into the well-known Toronto coffee scene. I asked for tips and recommendations on the social media channels and did a lot of research online. I had a lot of places on my list to checkout.

In the early morning hours one day I went over to the Kensington Market neighborhood with the intention of roaming around until the coffee shops on my list started opening. While walking around right in the heart of the neighborhood I stumbled upon another coffee shop that was already open, Moonbean Coffee Company.

Moonbean Coffee Company, Kensington Market, Toronto

Walking inside I was immediately drawn to the small-town, cozy, neighborhood like atmosphere.

Moonbean Coffee Company, Kensington Market, Toronto

I loved checking out the local flyers and information that was pinned right above the cream/sugar station. I felt like I was a part of the community while reading.

Moonbean Coffee Company, Kensington Market, Toronto

Turning around, there were lots of coffee cups above the espresso machine just waiting to be drank out of. On this morning though I felt like getting something different.

Moonbean Coffee Company, Kensington Market, Toronto

I asked the barista behind the counter for her recommendation on what to get and she was very friendly and suggested an iced mocha. A few minutes later in a taller glass I got a caffeinated beverage filled with big espresso ice cubes and chocolate syrup was hugging the inside. OMG! I just got “The” coffee drink.

Moonbean Coffee Company, Kensington Market, Toronto, Iced mocha coffee

Opened since 1995, they are a full-fledged micro roaster of green coffee that people order online from all around Canada. I checked out the coffee beans and roaster as I was consuming the chocolate deliciousness. They also offer plenty of breakfast, lunch and tea options for those that come to hang out in person. They open early and close late seven days a week. Perfect.

Moonbean Coffee Company, Kensington Market, Toronto

Moonbean Coffee Company, Kensington Market, Toronto

Immediately upon hanging out and drinking the iced mocha I knew I would come back. There I was the very next morning enjoying the same iced mocha, this time along the front entrance and outside patio.

Moonbean Coffee Company, Kensington Market, Toronto, iced mocha coffee

Moonbean Coffee Company, Kensington Market, Toronto

Moonbean Coffee Company, Kensington Market, Toronto

The coffee shop and drink in Toronto that I can’t wait to get back to and experience again, is one that was not even on my radar. When on the lookout for a coffee, or just traveling about in general, keep your eyes open, you never know when you’ll uncover a gem.

If your ever in Toronto and craving a tasty beverage and/or a relaxing neighborhood atmosphere, I suggest heading to the place where I found β€œThe” coffee drink, Moonbean Coffee Company. Yum! πŸ™‚

#ElCafeDe2013 Coffee tip of the week: Go Somewhere New!

Most of the tips up until now involve already being at the coffee shop or cafe enjoying your coffee. What about before you even decide what kind of coffee you want to experience? Whether you’re traveling or around home and you’re looking for coffee, you own it to yourself to…

Tip #13: …go somewhere new!

Experience new beans, flavor and coffee-making and the atmosphere that surrounds it. Whenever I’m in Chicago, The Wormhole Coffee and Intelligentsia are my go-to coffee shops. On a recent day in the Windy City however it was time to experience something new. I was introduced to more of the Chicago coffee scene by Pola of Jetting Around. First up was Julius Meinl cafe in the Lincoln Square neighborhood.

Julius Meinl coffee, Chicago

The roots of Julius Meinl go back to 1862 and Vienna. Walk inside and you’ll get a Viennese feel as all the furniture and fixtures were built back home. They have a strong presence throughout Europe and since 2002 in the Windy City.

Julius Meinl coffee, Chicago

My choice of coffee was the Melange which came highly recommended. It’s an espresso with equal parts steamed milk and foam with some meinl european cocoa on top. I added in an extra shot of espresso for good measure. A glass of water was along side for the ride.

Julius Meinl coffee, Chicago

Besides coffee, you’ll find a wide variety of Viennese themed pastries and cuisine.

Julius Meinl coffee, Chicago

She also took me to Asado Coffee, a relatively new addition to the Lakeview neighborhood.

Asado Coffee, Chicago

We had great conversations with both the barista and owner about their history and coffee-making process. There are some pour over coffees just waiting to be made.

Asado Coffee, Chicago

I selected the Cafe Con Leche from the small menu of three on this day. It was made with the freshest of beans, roasted in-house, and liquid sweetener. I got a grounded bag of their Especiales coffee for the road. The smell coming from within OMG! πŸ™‚

Asado Coffee, Chicago

Asado Coffee, Chicago

The coffee shop hopping resulted in some Chicago neighborhood exploration, not to mention some great conversations and times with Pola. The other coffee shops and these of course I will return too, but it’s always good no matter where you are at to go somewhere new!

Cleveland: Touring A Christmas Story.

When its the holiday season lights, holiday trees, ham, carols, spiked egg nog, “It’s A Wonderful Life” and “Miracle on 34th Street” come to the mind of a lot of people. Another movie, one I seem to hear about the most these days and see on TBS continuously in December is “A Christmas Story”.

On a weekend afternoon before Christmas, my fiance (then girlfriend) and I decided to hit up the Tremont neighborhood in Cleveland and the A Christmas Story House. We parked on Rowley Avenue, a few blocks away.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

All the houses in route were decorated with holiday lights…

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

…and inflatable snowmen and Santa Claus’s and lots of holiday goodness.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

We captured the holiday scene to-and-from.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

I’ll always gravitate to holiday decorations, checking them out closely. πŸ™‚

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

We came up to the end of Rowley Avenue at 11th Street. The house was straight ahead. First though we had to get tickets at the gift shop across the street. Next to the gift shop was also a museum which contained lot’s of props from the holiday movie and some behind the scenes photos.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

The gift shop had anything and everything for sale. Who could forget Ralphie coming down the stairs in the pink bunny suit pajamas. I should have asked if I could try them on and grab a picture. I am in Cleveland all the time, hmmm.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

The infamous leg lamp in all kinds of sizes was available of course. I was tempted.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

With tickets purchased it was time to get in line to head into the house. The house was purchased in 2004 and made to look like the movie both inside and out. It was an unusually warm day in Northeastern Ohio. Good thing. I didn’t want to get my tongue stuck on a flag pole per chance I decided to start fooling around.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

Standing on the porch, there the leg lamp stood, looking inside. Group after group were taking pictures at the window. I just got up close for a good shot.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

As we approached the front door we looked along the side of the house and saw the backyard and old shed.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

Right inside the door our eyes got wider. I should have put my coat on the coat rack.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

There they are. The 1983 film featured the Parker family. From left to right, Mother Parker, The Old Parker, Randy and Ralphie. The movie took place around the holidays and revolved around Ralphie and his desire for…

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

…a Red Ryder BB gun. Unwrapping and seeing it sure made his Christmas. The movie was narrated from the perspective of an adult Ralphie.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

Anyways, back to the leg lamp haha. There’s the wooden crate marked “FRAGILE” or as some would say “Fra-gee-lay”. I loved reciting lines and thinking about scenes from the movie when at the house and when writing this post.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

The lamp was a prize, I mean major award, won by The Old Parker.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

Mother Parker didn’t take to it nicely as it sat in the living room.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

The vintage radio also sat in the living area. The movie took place in the 1940’s so there was lots of old-school props and things to be seen.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

Love seeing holiday trees no matter the era.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

Heading upstairs we went into the kid’s bedroom and checked out Ralphie’s desk.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

We also explored the small bathroom upstairs…

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

…and the kitchen. The delicious turkey is ready. Too bad the dogs got a hold of it before the Parker’s. Ralphie as an adult said:

The heavenly aroma still hung in the house. But it was gone, all gone! No turkey! No turkey sandwiches! No turkey salad! No turkey gravy! Turkey Hash! Turkey a la King! Or gallons of turkey soup! Gone, ALL GONE!

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

Old school newspapers and stuff everywhere!

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

It was time to climb into the cupboard under the kitchen sink like Randy.

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

We were the last ones in the house, so it was time to leave. It was almost dark so we could capture the holiday lights lit up on the outside of the house. We didn’t have a chance to checkout the museum. Next time!

A Christmas Story, Tremont neighborhood, Cleveland, Ohio

It was a great time at the A Christmas Story House. A must visit, if your ever around Cleveland, Ohio.

Tip: If you have a chance to get here and the Tremont neighborhood, also get to Lucky’s Cafe for breakfast food and coffee yum.

What is your favorite scene or quote from A Christmas Story?

The Holidays at Detroit’s Eastern Market.

This past Saturday morning I went down to Detroit’s historic Eastern Market to do some holiday shopping and to consume some local coffee. While I was there, I also captured some photos of the holiday scene. Who doesn’t love being at an outdoor market during the holiday season?

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

Eastern Market is a six block long public market that has been open since 1891. People were out in full force on this morning.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

Even though it’s the winter season here in the Midwest, you’ll still find lots of fruits and vegetables. On the more festive side you can get some cider.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

Eastern Market offers plenty of local coffee choices. I went with a latte from Germack Coffee Roasting Co.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

You will find wreathes, baskets and candle arrangements aplenty along with some people spreading the holiday cheer through music.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

I would have liked to light all those candles up. That would have been a pretty scene. πŸ™‚

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

To a lot of people the holidays mean it is poinsettia time.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

I am always on the lookout for a good red one.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

Real holiday trees every where you look.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

Pine, pine, pine. You gotta love the smell of pine.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

There are lots of pine options in regards to decorations.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

Who knows what kinds of holiday items you’ll come across as you walk around outside. Cute reindeer.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

There was a festive atmosphere inside the stores around the market as well, like at DeVries & Co. which has lots of Detroit and Michigan based products.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus stopped by!

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

Love seeing ice sculpting up close. Hope it gets colder in the Midwest so sculptors can showcase their work for longer periods of time.

Detroit, Michigan Eastern Market - holiday season

I was also inspirated to checkout the holiday market scene by a shot of Krakow’s Christmas Market in Poland from Jetting Around.

What markets do you plan to checkout or have in your travels during the holiday season?