Hi everyone! Hannah, from hannahclaudia.blogspot.com, here. Audrey has graciously accepted my fan-girl request to collaborate, so in this blog post, I’m going to share a few photos and thoughts from my trip to a local coffee shop. Like Audrey, I’m a college student, and I’m currently located in Ithaca, NY. Unlike most college students, I’m just getting into the coffee world — and I’m loving it.
On a sunny Saturday over Labor Day weekend, I walked to The Shop Cafe, located a block away from Ithaca’s famous downtown area, The Commons. Granted, Ithaca has a public transportation system, but homegirl has yet to figure it out.
The downhill hike was easy, and I was more excited than ever to arrive. The weather had started to cool down, and that fall chill was in the air — perfect for an afternoon in a cozy coffee shop.
Apparently, I wasn’t the only one who thought that. I walked into The Shop, and all of the seats were filled. The cafe itself isn’t very large, but after snapping a few photos and paying for my order (a 12 oz. decaf soy latte and a blueberry lemon bar – $7), a few people got up, and I was able to find a table to work at. Though there’s a tattoo parlor in the back, The Shop is a very family-friendly, welcoming cafe, with plants hanging from the ceilings and warm lighting.
As I mentioned before, I’m no coffee connoisseur. My experience has largely been limited to the very infrequent Starbucks coconut misto, hotel coffee, and dining hall coffee. However, upon first sip, I knew that the coffee I ordered was something special. The latte was incredibly smooth and light; the soy milk mellowed out the coffee flavor, but if you like stronger coffee, go for the espresso.
Now onto to the blueberry lemon bar: this was a recommendation courtesy of the barista, and I’m so glad I took her advice. The bright blueberry and lemon curd filling gently cut through the rich oatmeal crumble crust and topping (the sensory evaluations from my food lab has gone to my head). I love it when my food has texture, and the crunchiness of the bottom crust paired so nicely with the soft, dense filling. If bars are not your thing though, The Shop has plenty of other options available, including vegan treats from Edgewood Bakery, and gluten-free pastries from Elemental Eating. Non-coffee drinkers can even enjoy a fresh juice, Italian soda, or natural sodas.
After being sufficiently distracted by the coffee and bar, I remembered that I needed to get to work. Fortunately, I didn’t bring my laptop and did textbook work, because there’s no free wifi. Depending on where you’re sitting, the lighting can be quite dim too. Though I wouldn’t rate The Shop to be the best place to study at, it’s undeniably a great place to get quality coffee and delicious treats. The Shop is underrated compared to the popular Collegetown Bagels and Gimme!, but I think that’s what makes it so special — it’s like a hidden gem :).
312 E Seneca St.
Ithaca, NY 14850
tl;dr — Limited seating and no wifi, but a great place to meet friends. I highly recommend the blueberry lemon bar.