“May your coffee be strong, and your Monday be short.”

Just like I mentioned on my About page, I need coffee for survival. The addiction started about 15 years ago, at the age of 8 when my mom would let me get mocha ice storms from from the Nordstrom Café at the mall. Why I needed an ice blended coffee at that young of an age, I’m not quite sure.

Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts are great when I’m short on time, or my lovely electric car can’t go a far enough distance, but I LOVE visiting locally owned coffee shops. Each one has their own personality and it’s fun to see how different they are from each other!

Weekends are wonderful because they’re the perfect time for me to find local shops that I can visit. Here are 5 that I’ve been able to go to recently!

Blue State Coffee || 777 Main Street, Hartford

img_1452Blue State Coffee has 4 shops in Connecticut with one in Hartford and three in New Haven. I’ve been able to visit the Hartford shop a few times and loved it! They have an open layout, and there is plenty of space at the counter to place an order and wait, as well as a handful of tables and with a counter along the front window (to people watch).

My usual: iced mocha and a bagel

Peaberry’s Café || 712 Hopmeadow Street, Simsbury

I found Peaberry’s on a whim one morning when I had some extra time before going into work. I almost hate the café just because it’s 45 minutes away from me. Almost. It’s a very cozy atmosphere with tables everyone, smiles on the faces of every employee, and a fireplace in the back of the café.

My usual: mocha frappe and a cinnamon roll

Sarah’s Coffee House || 257 Asylum Street, Hartford

I’ve only been able to go to Sarah’s once but that was enough to make me love them. I remember walking in that day and loving how homey it felt. It was a quieter morning so I was able to stay and talk with the barista. That’s the ideal coffee shop for me: a friendly environment, good coffee, and great people.

My usual: cappuccino

J. René Coffee Roasters || 320 Park Road, West Hartford

This was an exciting Yelp find for me. I typically don’t visit the side of West Hartford that J. René’s is on, mostly because I’m not nearly as familiar with it as I am with the Center and the Square. With plenty of parking in front of the shop as well as on the street, even the busiest day isn’t an excuse to not stop in. With a very modern look, one thing they don’t offer is WiFi to encourage people to not just sit there and waste away on the internet.

My usual: iced mocha and a cinnamon roll

Metro Café || 580 Farmington Avenue, Hartford

Okay, so just like Sarah’s Coffee House, I’ve only been to Metro Café once. It wasn’t for any reason other than the fact that they were participating in the Gilmore Girls 16th Anniversary Luke’s Diner Popup celebration.

But now that I’ve been there once, I need to go again. Based on the usual orders at the other shops, I don’t really get coffee, I’m more into espresso. But their coffee is REALLY good. So good, in fact, that I willingly drank it black- a big deal since my coworkers have asked me if I’m having a cup of milk with a dash of coffee.

If there’s a café you’ve been to that I didn’t include, comment and let me know. Weekend coffee shop adventures are my favorite!

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