Have you ever been on a road trip or a business trip or just in a new place and you really wanted a good cup of coffee or a quick snack from a local café, but you just didn’t know where to go? It’s hard to be a good preservationist (in the lifestyle sense) when you’re typically greeted with chain retailers and restaurants when you arrive in a new place, whether it be near the airport or off the interstate or on the outskirts of a downtown.
It’s easy to talk about loving the local places more than the national chains, but unless you’ve done a decent amount of planning or have a lot of time on your hands or you have excellent geographic intuition, finding those unique places in difficult and sometimes out of the question. And while maybe one cup of Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts won’t hurt your preservation soul, it would be even better to find a local coffee shop.
If you feel the same way, you will understand just how thrilled I was when I stumbled across Indie Coffee shops. It’s an internet database that compiles independently owned coffee shops across the United States. As of right now, there are 1838 coffee shops in 871 cities listed. You can search by town, address, zip code – it’s easy. What’s even better is that most of the entries have details beyond the address and phone number. It lists if there is Wi-Fi, food, alcohol, indoor seating, outdoor seating, and if it is a chain of any sorts. Visitors to the site can submit their local coffee shops if they are not listed. Obviously, there are many more than 1838 in the country. Go ahead and add your favorites! I added Java Bean Plantation in Southern Pines.
From the indiecoffeeshops.com “about us” section: It’s pretty simple … we love coffee and the atmosphere of our neighborhood coffee shops. As the name suggests, this website’s purpose is to provide information on local, independent coffee shops so that people have an accessible alternative to the major chains, no matter where they are.
Consider this an excellent road trip tool. I’ll be using it to help plan out my next trip. After all, I always need a cup of good, strong coffee.