Caffeine Tour: Willmar
Yes, it’s time once again to search a community for that liquid that makes life worth getting out of bed for. It’s the Caffeine Tour: Willmar. There are a couple of stand out options that are local, fun, and worth a look as well as the corporate stores you’d expect. Here we go!
The Goodness Coffee House
The Goodness lives up to it’s name. There is a lot to like about it. Lets start with the basics. The Goodness has that clean open feel of some corporate stores, without the feeling of being so generic. The place has personality. There are a few different seating areas and lots of light. It has the feel of a brewery, except the liquid that’s brewing is coffee and tea. You’ll find a game to play, or something to read. It’s a great place to meet friends.
From the standpoint of caffeine, the Goodness has a great variety. The coffee is fresh roast Peace Coffee. If you’re not aware, Peace Coffee is fair trade coffee from roasters based in Minneapolis. They’ve been around since the mid 90s. Once the beans land at the Goodness, they create a variety of drinks that you might expect and a few surprises too. In addition, there are some treats and food as well.
The Goodness offers signature drinks that are cleverly named and a treat to try like Health nut, Green Goodness and Cinnamon Toast Fog. Most are ordered by the glass/cup, but there are several drinks available by the quart and 1/2 gallon to go. The order ahead menu is here.
In addition to coffee served hot or cold, you’ll find a decent selection of Rishi tea. There are around a dozen to choose from including Peppermint Sage, Chili Mango, and Blueberry Hibiscus. For those who are not quite as adventurous, yes there is the recognizable standard, Earl Grey Tea.
The real treats in the Tea Department however are the Macha’s and the Chai. The Goodness offers a fun spin on these and gives them a life of their own. Think fancy coffee drinks except made with Tea.
Perhaps the biggest treat at the Goodness is what’s on tap. Kombucha and Yeti Cold Press are often available. Both are worth trying.
Cold Press Coffee uses a different brewing process. Instead of hot water and coffee grounds which are then cooled to make an iced coffee, cold pressed coffee uses pressure and cold water. The coffee is cold the whole time. As you can imagine, this changes the flavor. Try it, you’ll like it!
Kombucha is a black sweet tea that has be ever so slightly fermented. It doesn’t necessarily taste sweet, because the sugars are ‘removed’ during the process. It is served cold and can be offered as a black tea or flavored. Kombucha is a rabbit hole worth climbing into if you feel adventurous. One note though, while it doesn’t taste like a caffeinated drink, always remember that it is or you’ll be up half the night.
If you’re looking for the short version, the Goodness is worth a good look.
Where: The Goodness Coffee House at 333 Litchfield Ave SW, Willmar, MN 56201
Phone: 320 403-5025
Lu Lu Bean’s Coffee House
The next stop on the Caffeine Tour: Willmar is Lu Lu Bean’s Coffee House. Of the name sounds familiar, there’s a reason. Lu Lu Bean’s has been named as one of the best coffee houses in Minnesota. This local favorite has a super relaxed classic coffee house feel. There are chairs to melt into or tables to gather around with friends.
You’ll find a solid menu of coffee drinks. Many are the expected drinks to get your caffeine fix. Others are designed more for fun flavors rather than the kick. They offer both a hot and cold menu drink menu as well as specialty seasonal drinks throughout the year. Coffee, tea, macha, and chai. It’s all there.
The real fun begins with the food though. Giant cookies, breads, pastries and treats are the go to if you want something with your coffee or tea.
In addition to snacks, Lu Lu Bean’s Coffee House offers a breakfast and lunch menu as well.
Breakfast Sandwiches with choice of meats and cheeses or a breakfast burrito with a lot of variety starts the day. A lunch menu that’s full of sandwiches like the Kickin’ Chicken or the Hungry Hawaiian offer something substantial while you catch up with friends or business acquaintances.
Because Lu Lu Bean’s was build in a home, there are plenty of nooks and corners to make conversation a little easier. It really is a caffeine destination if you’re wanting an original experience.
Where: Lu Lu Bean’s Coffee House at 1020 1st St S, Willmar, MN 56201
Phone: 320 214-9633
If you’re on the go and want a familiar cup of coffee, Caribou may be your thing.
The company has opened a drive through Caribou that offers all the drinks you’d expect at the window. Know that there is no sit down service at this location.
Where: Caribou Coffee at 620 1st St S, Willmar, MN 56201
Phone: 320 262-8052
A lot of people love Starbucks because they are so consistent. The coffee you get in Willmar, Minnesota will taste the same as it does in Williamsburg, Virginia or Willowbrook Illinois. That said, there are no surprises here.
There are two Starbuck locations. One is on 1st Street at Uptown Willmar and the other is inside Target. Both offer inside seating.
Where: Starbucks at 1709 1st St S, Willmar, MN 56201(Uptown Willmar or 2505 1st St S, Willmar, MN 56201 (Target)
Phone: 320 235-2407 (Uptown Willmar) or 320 235-0916 (Target)
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