We recently went on a pleasure trip to San Antonio, TX. We started out our day by drinking way too much coffee; we knew we could not get what we would consider a good cup in an airport. We knew we would have to wait until we got to our hotel to fix a good cup. Preparation was important to accomplish this.
We carefully selected a couple of our favorite coffees, roasted them two days before we left and pre-ground them, we had no choice, you can only pack so much in your carry-ons. It can be a hard decision, take all the equipment needed to make a good cup on the road or pack the clothing you need for the trip. We checked to see if the hotel we selected had a coffee pot in the room, it did. So we packed our pre-ground coffee and filters and hoped the pot was clean and the water was at least okay.
By the time we got to our room we were ready for a cup of fresh brew, it is a long trip; we needed that cup of coffee and to relax before going to look for a local place to eat up some culture. What a surprise when we saw the coffee pot in our room. I freaked, it was a single cup that used pods only, and they slide in on a tray. No way to make a pot of my all time favorite, Kenya French Mission Bourbon. We had smelled that coffee in our carry-on all through the airports. I needed it.
I headed straight to the lobby to ask if they had real coffee pots in hiding. The clerk suggested we go to Wal-Mart and buy one. Couldn’t do that, we did this trip without a car, it is a challenge, but in San Antonio it can be done easily.
What to do now, hummmmm!
I recently read an article in Fresh Cup magazine about pour-overs, so I had the concept in my head on how they work, I got into my MacGyver mode and created one with the things I had in our room and enjoyed a cup of our coffee each morning before we started off on our site seeing for the day. Here is what I did.
*I used one of those plastic drinking cups sitting by the sink, a large Styrofoam cup with a lid (good thing we purchased a large Coke to go with dinner) the coffee filters we brought, folded into a cone shape and hot water (that was the only thing that little coffee pot was good for, hot water.)
I put a filter in the top cup, add coffee and slowly poured the hot water around the edge of the coffee and kept doing this until our cup was full. Ah, fresh brew! Now before we go on our next trip, we will purchase a travel pour-over. It will not take up to much room in a carry-on and we will know that at least we can have good coffee in our room. Leaving room to freak about something else, like no water pressure in the shower.
An added note about road trips: One of the first things we do on any pleasure or business trip is look for a local coffee roaster or local coffee shop. We would never visit a chain, we stick with the locals. We didn’t find a really good one until the day before we left San Antonio. We stumble upon one in a new art district at the end of historic neighborhood we walk through. The fresh brew was good and we really enjoy meeting the Barista/manager and talking coffee with him. He was very excited about what he does. When we told him that we are roasters in Indiana, he asked if he could pull us a shot of his espresso, very nice. There is just something about the atmosphere in a local shop that you just don’t get in a chain. What do you think it is?
Where have you found the most interesting place for coffee on a road trip?