A Trek Through The Coffee Scene

Photos by L.G. Patterson

Some days, we all could use an extra boost. For those of us who crave caffeine, there are moments where nothing can beat that perfect cup, whether it’s coffee, espresso or tea. And there’s plenty of options when it comes to where to enjoy that satisfying sip, each with its own distinct atmosphere and clientele. We invite you to take a tour of our favorite locally owned and operated coffee shops. Maybe you’ll find your perfect spot for that next jolt!

Lakota Coffee

Most Compelling Cup: Brown Sugar Cinnamon Latte
24 S. Ninth St.
3111 Green Meadows Way

Depending on the day, the scene at Lakota Coffee Co. may look a little different. Cara Penquite, social media manager for Lakota, says the welcoming atmosphere attracts all kinds of people. “Our customers are majority (University of Missouri) students during the semester, but there is a healthy mix,” she says. The dark colors, wood accents, dim lighting and sounds of conversation provide a homey atmosphere perfect for a study date or low-key afternoon with friends. “It depends on the day of the week, but Lakota can be a good place for conversation with friends and a good place to study.” While there is a spot placed perfectly downtown for students, Lakota has several locations scattered across Columbia, so you can sip on your favorite sweet treat no matter the occasion. If you are new to the Lakota crew, Penquite suggests the brown sugar cinnamon latte for something a little different.

For more information on Lakota, visit lakotacoffee.com.

Shortwave Coffee

Most Compelling Cup: Lavender Latte
915 Alley A
29 S. Ninth St.

Shortwave coffeeWhether you’re looking to quickly grab and go or spend an entire afternoon, Shortwave has what you need. The location on Ninth Street has a bakery where customers can enjoy an open layout, natural lighting and a friendly community-style table, while the roastery on Alley A takes on a smaller space but provides the same relaxing yet productive environment. Aaron Mcgough, barista at Shortwave on Ninth Street, says he sees all kinds of people. “I see a lot of study sessions and even graduate students come by,” he says. “On the weekends, there are families, especially if there is a (Mizzou) game.” Barista Evie Mei says the community table at the bakery keeps people talking, whether it’s a group of friends chatting or students trying to work. “Students really like to use the community table for study sessions,” she says.No matter the reason for your visit, Mcgough and Mai both recommend the lavender latte, which is hand steeped with real lavender leaves. “It’s really fun to make,” Mcgough says.

For more information on Shortwave, visit shortwave.coffee.

Cool Beanz
Most Compelling Cup: Iced Reese’s or Iced Twix
Mobile Coffee Truck

Cool Beanz COFFEE TRUCKWhat’s cooler that having a coffee shop on wheels? Cool Beanz, the unique coffee truck, travels around Columbia providing delicious coffee, lattes, cold brew, espressos, cappuccinos, teas and even snacks. This distinctive mobile coffee vendor offers the perfect morning boost or afternoon pick-me-up, especially if you’re lucky enough to have it parked right outside your office. While the wheels are one of Cool Beanz’ most unique qualities, its signature drink options also bring a special aspect to the table. Maurice Helmka, owner and operator, says you might notice the names of some recognizable candy bars on the drink menu, including the iced Reese’s and popular iced Twix drink. “We have over 40 base flavors to choose from. If you mix them, there are unlimited flavor options,” Helmka says.

To stay up to date on where Cool Beanz is located around Columbia, visit facebook.com/coolbeanzcomo.