I’ll do my best to not sound like a junkie, but coffee is honestly one of my favorite things in the world.
I like it black and bold; adding cream or sugar or any of that junk detracts from the beans’ natural goodness.
However, that’s just my opinion. Everyone who drinks coffee likes it in his or her own unique way.
I’ll just cut to the chase: It’s finals week and if you’re a fellow coffee addict (or aren’t and just need an energy boost), here’s a few of the dedicated coffee venues at Cal Poly Pomona where you can get your fix:
1) Starbucks Coffee. Most students already know there’s a Starbucks adjacent to University Library. Although I think Pike Place isn’t the best coffee I’ve tasted (way too bold, way too bitter), let’s face it: It’s Starbucks. It beats out everywhere else in the variety of coffee-based drinks you can order and the quality of those drinks is exceptional. The availability and variety of food items is pretty good, too. A grande cup of Pike’s Place with no room for cream is a sad day in my book, but forking up the extra $5-6 for one of Starbucks’ turkey sandwiches, Santa Fe Panini sandwiches or a pumpkin scone makes it way better. While overpriced, going to Starbucks once in a while is definitely worth the $3-5 you could spend on a drink alone.
Pros: Great variety and quality of coffee-based drinks; open until 10 p.m. Mon-Thurs; has sandwiches and other actual food, a short walk to other places on campus.
Cons: On the pricey side; coffee unaided by cream and sugar is not very good; lines can be ridiculously long.
2) Einstein Bros. Bagels: Hands-down, Einstein Bros. Bagels has the best vanilla hazelnut blend I’ve tasted. It’s so popular that patrons seem to give the staff a headache when a new batch of vanilla hazelnut needs to be brewed every 45 minutes on a busy morning. The house blend is pretty great too: Solid flavor; bold, but not bitter. Although it is also armed with an array of coffee-based drinks, it can’t compete with Starbucks’ variety. Even so, Einstein Bros. Bagels wins out in the bagel department. There’s literally a bagel and cream cheese combination for everyone, but if you’re not down for a bagel, I’ll just say this much: Location, location, location. Einstein Bros. Bagels is located inside the same building as the Pony Express, so grab a sandwich, some soup, a salad or candy – if you feel so inclined. While its proximity to Pony Express makes Einstein Bros. Bagels a destination, the journey to get there can be a pain. You may not be in the mood to hoof it to the new College of Business building (just north of the CLA and adjacent to Building 17), but it’s worth it if you do.
Pros: Great coffee; great bagels; modestly priced; adjacent to fully stocked mini-mart.
Cons: Far away from campus center; very limited seating inside and outside.
3) Peet’s Coffee & Tea : This little gem in the Bronco Student Center boasts a pretty solid variety of coffee blends: Major Dickason’s, French Roast, Costa Rica and a pretty good decaf option too. While Peet’s also has a nice selection of bagels, doughnuts, muffins and Danishes, not everything is available everyday and its stock is fairly diminished by noon. Peet’s also serves a variety of coffee-based drinks, but like Einstein Bros. Bagels, the variety just isn’t as great as Starbucks’. But if you’re not in a coffee-drinking mood, Peet’s also boasts a pretty bold selection of quality teas unlike anything you’ll find elsewhere on campus, whether it’s bagged or loose leaf.
Pros: Best variety of coffee blends; convenient location in BSC; has solid tea option.
Cons: Food items are in limited stock and sell quickly.
While these are the three dedicated coffee venues on campus, they aren’t the only places where students, staff and faculty can get their fix. There’s many other places on campus that sell coffee, but I’ll talk about those in subsequent articles.
For information about dining hours, visit http://www.foundation.csupomona.edu/dining/hours.aspx