Heavens!!! A Coffee House enroute to CV/Snowshoe!
November 15, 2006
Haven't been to the Shoe in a while and besides the still-closed Route 55 from Wardensville to Baker (yawn... yawn...) I wasn't expecting anything peculiar other than my low-level espresso light that normally gets worse until Snowshoe where I immediately pop into the Starbucks or turn on my own Gaggia espresso machine ... Surprise surprise... In the middle of Moorefield immediately after crossing the Hester Bridge on the South Fork... A new coffee house!! Aromas Coffee House that is, I think it must have been a 7-11 before but the coffee was excellent, the owners and employees friendly and efficient, and their choices quite varied.
I entered for a quick soy cappucino and stayed for an hour talking to locals who were quite sophisticated about world affairs. The place also was quite busy...
Oh well, I had got my non-stop time from DC to Snowshoe down to 3 hours and 50 minutes. Here it goes back to 5 hours again...
Glad to see people will be visiting a real cafe, not Starbucks.
Hey, I'm Cuban and addicted to caffeine which I can't remember being of reason and not drinking... I am unapologetic about my need for java and it must be espresso. Regular American coffee is dishwater. As far as buying it, I will forever favor the local coffee shop rather than the sterile Starbucks. Coffee shops, especially in a ski area, are about one of the best ways to meet people, share experiences, etc. Unfortunately Starbucks has a thing with Intrawest. And at Snowshoe, however, the one they had there had gone downhill in a hurry.
I far prefer a 'sterile' Starbucks than one of the ones with a distinct, hmm, aroma as you walk in. There is an amazing number of them that consistently smell like cooked rotten cabbage.
Top note for you, sir?
So, lbotta, tell us about the espresso. Is the crema bright yellow or dark. Does it cover the surface of the cup or merely ring it. Is it oily as it trickles down throat. Do they serve in porcelain or one of those abominable paper thimbles.
I haven't perceived offensive odors at most coffee houses. The aroma of coffee normally overpowers anything else... You must be going to coffe houses in Korea during the winter if you're smelling what you ascribe as rotten cabbage. And that smell is called Kim-chee, and it is awesome too... good for your health
As far as my perfect espresso, I have a) a filtration system at my SS condo, b) have a professional grinder and only grind what I'm planning to use, c) have a pump Gaggia Classic expresso machine that makes unbeatable coffee. Then of course, d) the tamping can make a world of difference in the quality. My espresso is normally served in demitasses. No styrofoam stuff because the coffee tastes plastic. And then, the coffee... After many years, I found the best coffee for my tastes is LaColombe sold by DeBruno Brothers in Philly. Same coffee served at Le Bec Fin, by the way. Worth the price. Finally, there's the product: an awesome coffee with the dark, redish/brown crema that signifies the total lack of Robusta.
Well, Aromas in Moorefield doesn't go to all that trouble. But they delivered a wonderful cup of espresso and I also departed with a soy cap since I can't have cow milk. And in addition, their coffee was not burnt like Starbucks.
Don't get me wrong. I like Starbucks. But if I have the chance to patronize the locals, AND they can give me a roast that isn't as bitter as Starbicks, more power to them!
And me? I pretty much just like coffee ice cream. Never really developed a taste for coffee, espresso, etc...
I do, however, like a good cup of hot chocolate, with a dash of cinnamon.
I'm like Scott, a mostly non-coffee drinker that likes coffee ice cream. I will drink decaf when offered at a formal dining situation and enjoy it some mornings when on "vacation". I'm quite sensitive to caffeine and stay away from the real thing. Found that out way back in college days when I realized one cup was all I needed to pull an overnighter. Last time I had a 16oz cup of real coffee was from a gas station just before an early arrival at Wintergreen for a day of skiing around 1995. Got it because I was feeling a little sleepy. It woke me up alright, I got heart palpitations on first run down Big Acorn
Having said that, what's your most PLEASANT coffee drinking memory?
I got one I have never forgotten. In August 1997 I had an early morning breakfast with my four kids in a little dive on a pier in Kitty Hawk, NC. My wife was sleeping-in at our nearby accommodations. Me and the kids (ages 4-12 at the time) all ordered decaf coffee. They had free refills. We sat at a table with a great ocean view and talked, and laughed, and watched the waves break below us for about 75 minutes. I suppose coffee may be second only to booze as a socializing elixir.
A little coffee shop in Vancouver near where my wife and I stayed after our honeymoon cruise. I'm not a mocha fan mostly because they're too damn sweet but my wife ordered one and it was one of the best coffees I've ever had. Smooth, smoky, choclaty but in that bitter dark chocolate way. It seemed like they got the choclatey flavor from how they prepared the coffee rather than by adding Hershey's syrup. Awesome.
There was also a place in Galway when I worked there that we would go to after a night out because they were open super late. Their coffee was awesome and they had all these great homemade sandwiches prepared fresh on bread from the baker around the corner.
Can't beat having a coffee at 3am at Cafe du Monde after a night of debauchery on Bourbon street. Eatin' beignets and listen to the street performers.
Also happens to be the place my wife and I went on our first date. Kept the debauchery to a minimum that night
. I have the coffee mug from that night sitting on my desk right next to me.
Best coffee experience - A cup of real kona coffee on Maui every morning during my honeymoon. Black as midnight on a moonless night. They keep the good stuff on the islands for themselves - the kona crap we get here just doesn't do it for me.
BTW, I am a coffee fiend. Like a heroin addict, I need the caffeine just to feel "right" in the AM. I have no trouble drinking it up to the moment I fall over asleep at night.
I agree, Hawaiian is the best - but the Kauaian beats Kona every day of the week, IMO.
However, on the way to the slopes I stop for nothing.
My best was having breakfast in a hotel overlooking the Pacific Ocean, up in Crescent City California. Hotel was a dive, as was the town. Me and some locals sat around for about three hours, talking, drinking cup after cup, watching it rain and the waves crash in. That was my first trip up to the Pac NW area and it was defining- could clearly understand the allure of coffee up there after that one.
Ibotta...Just be careful! U R just 1 step away from the real deal...CRACK!...Just say no!!! I have always called Coffee, Crack Light...& Starbucks is just a Crack Light House!
Good espresso, unlike its meaning in Italian, takes more time to make for me than it would take to make crack for those who partake of such... Hey, the Japanese have the tea ceremony... We have the coffee ceremony... Hope see you at Snowshoe some day and then you cna flavor some of it. Or else I could improve it by adding some Bailey's...
I was just playing..I too myself am powerless over Crack Light(caffeine) The Expresso you speak of sounds good...is it full of sugar? can you make it with..my fav....Splenda if need be?...With that said,Starbucks is still a Crack Light House! PS..Baily's...now thats my main (problem) enjoyment!
Hee. I am actually very partial to both the cabagge and the radish kimchi. Not it.
Some Starbucks have it, without regard to the flavor they serve that day, some do not. Overpowering coffee aroma? I've no doubt that some do perceive it as a coffee aroma, stranger musty smells have been called good in the past. . There is a Starbucks next to a major shopping mall in NoVA that reliably makes me gag as I walk in.
Robusta has its uses. The last whole-house DIY project was a 4-day timeless marathon. Timeless because I found some Ugandan at $4/kilo, freshly roasted even, and would only take a break from the chop saw and nail gun to grind more and run the pot. The level of caffeine in that stuff was just unbelievable, but it did the trick; I lost track of the days/nights/calendar.
There was actually a place to sit on the 4th day (unfortunately no working bathrooms yet) just before the moving truck came in with pianos and things. One of my paint helpers decides she'll sit and have coffee with hubby before they leave for home. She poured herself and hubby a china-size cup each, unfortunately from the wrong pot.
I'm told they had to pull over into the woods 2 miles from the house with stomach cramps and had to look for large leaves after.
PS to avoid that Buck's bitterness I grind Costa Rican/Guatemalan/Mexican coffees 2 grades coarser than the African/Indonesian/Brazilian/Colombian ones. I also refuse to buy the Central American ones or the House Blend at 'Bucks.
Might I recommend- if you pass a Nordstrom's at a mall sometime soon- Las Mesas from El Salvador? Yes, it's partly a shameless plug because my girlfriend is from El Salvador, but it's a pretty good coffee that, unfortunately, does have a slight aftertaste. But it's worth a try. Nordstrom's was selling coffee for 25 cents in July; they're back to regular price now. Bonus feature: for those of you with a passion about these things it's a "fair trade" coffee.
Am I the only one in here without a girlfriend?
*Shameless attempt at a hijack.* lol
Ok, with the Bailey's (and enough of it), the coffee starts to matter less and less
I do drink Starbucks as well. I have to say though, I prefer to buy their Kenya beans and grind them fresh at home.
I don't know WHAT they do at the shops, but it always seems a LOT more bitter than when I make it at home.
While I do enjoy some coffee with my morning bourbon, I'm pretty much into coffee for the caffeen, folgers is ok by me, although my neighbor at work, paramount coffee
roasts some great bean, nicely oily try their Super Blend.
kauai and kona are great...agree that the stuff we get here is not the same. same for jamaican blue mountain- only good on the island.
like tgd, i cant even begin to function in the am without lots of the quality leaded variety. drink it up to bedtime and sleep like a baby.
as far as the trip to the shoe, its always a nonstop flight unless the wife and rugrats are in tow. then its a missed flight for them if they arent back to the car when the gas pump clicks off. i loathe the gas pumps that dont have the auto clip to pump while u hit the head. stopping sucks- sometimes you have to re-pass all the dolts that cant drive.
This is pretty amazing! A thread on coffee plus ski-dating advice for Brad! I think we've got two brand new ideas for summer board postings! All hail Ibotta and Brad (though maybe Brad doesn't want this distinction anymore)!
You are definitely correct, Aromas Coffee House (which opened two months ago I believe) was formerly a 7-11 back in the 80's. Up until last year it was even a video rental store and then even this past spring was some sort of beads & bracelets store. In fact that store has a storied history of surviving the 1985 500 year flood after flood waters nearly crested over the roof of the building. That was when 7-11 was still there.
Afterwards, I believe that 7-11 never returned and simply let the building get run down. Since that time there have been numerous businesses try to use the location for a business, but it seems like nothing ever caught hold for the owners.
...In the middle of Moorefield immediately after crossing the Hester Bridge on the South Fork... A new coffee house!! Aromas Coffee House that is, I think it must have been a 7-11 before...
woooooo I'm gettin free advice!! Considering my dating experience in my whole 27.8 years of life has been dating twice for a grand total of 6 months, I need some... ADVICE. *perverts* lol
jimmy, I'm not going to argue with your taste in coffee, but have a look over on RogerZ's page and try some Salvadorean aged rum.
You want some dating advice, Brad? Take a three week trip to Budapest. Good coffee, good... ah, "aged Hungarian rum" (is that what they call it these days?).
Ok, so we've been arguing about *good* coffee, what about normal coffee? I've taken a hankerin' to Folgers lately, after a couple years at school of drinking Master House.
a freshly ground good quality columbian is a great everyday brew....just like sierra nevada pale ale, and not necessarily in any particular order.
Ahhh....now we're getting somewhere. Nevada Pale Ale!!! It's happy hour somewhere in the world and besides, the virtues of coffee are highly overrated. I'll do a morning cup or two of Folgers and then it's beer o'clock on a day off. Never mix the two while working
it's bad for your job evaluations
Roger, I thought you were gonna say take a trip to Tawain for under aged...
Sure... just bring some of that Pale Ale along...
One more positive thing: The coffee house started making the GREATEST panninis! I have now altered the schedule to Snowshoe. Leave DC before lunch, have a late afternoon "linner" with panini and two large soy cappucinos, and give my Black Lab a walk at the coffee house before driving the last 90 miles to Snowshoe. A nice break.
It got so popular two weekends ago that they ran out of bread! And the owner gave me the coffee for free as an apology...
I just got back from Italy last Saturday. I'm in cappucino withdrawal. Why can't we get coffee like that here? Everywhere you go you get this rich smooth creamy coffee with none of this harse bitter taste we get here. Usually I need something to take the edge off coffee but there you really dont. And it seems so effortless when they make it. They're banging out dozens at a time without batting an eye. The paninis are incredible too. Half the time you don't know whats in one except that it tastes phenomonal.
I thought we were the only people who indulged in 'linner'! Thats great to know about the coffee and panninis ... where -exactly- is this place? Recent changes in living arrangements and divvying up of the tech toys has left me reduced to paper maps for awhile [oh the agony!] so I need pretty specific directions to find this jewel of yours.
My daughter and I will be at SS 12/14-18 ... if you are there Lou, would love to buy you and your lab a drink!
Thats great to know about the coffee and panninis ... where -exactly- is this place?
Aromas is in the southern part of Moorefield as you cross the bridge over the Potomac. Immediately after the bridge. If you catch any speed on the bridge, you will miss the turn. The owner is a great guy and he's been trying to teach his staff about the difference between a cappuccino and a latte.
I will be closing on my condo sale in Phila on the 15th of Dec, and plan to be at SS that weekend, as I am also closing on the new place in DC on the 20th. I will need the rest and that would be the last time I get to play at the Shoe as I'll be setting up household back in the Washington area.
Thanks Brad. Helped me make the connection to location. I think I got pulled over in their parking lot riding with a buddy back in 11th grade of high school. I will try it next time through. I'm heading to my folks in Petersburg for T'day. lbotta maybe you can get them to offer a DCSKI discount, just need to wear your pin