Places to go, Lattes to Drink… The Bean Factory

Sometimes, this is how I feel about living in a cold state:

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We’ve had an especially ridiculously cold start to winter. There are many things you can do to ameliorate the situation, including but not limited to buying fur lined Sorel boots, always wearing your fur lined hood, a scarf, a hat, mittens, and sometimes a coat under your coat. Seat warmers in cars make a world of difference.  Wrap in blankets, drink warm tea, and pull on socks that are several centimeters thick.

This seems like a lot of work to those that live in warm climates. Some days, I completely agree.

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However, there are things that make winter and those who thrive in {read, endure} its whipping winds and relentless snow dumpings beautiful.  There is something exquisite about the purple/slate/orange hues of a night sky as the snow falls.  Nothing makes our puppy happier than bounding and playing in the fresh snow for hours.

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Rosy cheeks are cute. Sweaters and scarves layered upon more layers are lovely.  And, in my humble opinion, piping hot, cinnamony sweet lattes taste better on below freezing winter days.

Piping Hot.

Piping Hot.

The ding of the coffee shop door bell ringing behind me as the cold wind dissipates around me is replaced by a smell of freshly roasted and brewed coffee beans and a simultaneous sigh of relief that for an hour or so, warmth will replace a seemingly ever-present chill.

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Having worked in a coffee shop on and off since high school, I am predisposed to sniff out the best hidden coffee shop secrets in any town.  Since we’ve moved here, we’ve been on the hunt for the new family favorite. A couple of weeks ago, we came upon a gem in our very own St. Paul.  On Randolph Street, right in a cozy, snow-covered neighborhood, the steamy windows of J & S The Bean Factory beckoned.

With vintage decor charm, eclectic mugs, and in-house-roasted-daily beans, I couldn’t ask for more in a local shop.

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Also, they sell donuts.  With Christmas sprinkles.

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They have Friday night music, friendly staff and regulars, and most importantly, unbelievable lattes. My new favorite has been the Miel {French for ‘honey’}, which has a natural hint of honey, and a subtle cinnamon spice. Not overly sweet, this is the quintessential {and completely addictive – in the best way possible} cozy winter drink.

The brewers travel to countries around the world to choose which beans they want for their customers. They roast beans in a 25 kilo small batch roaster.  As my fingers defrosted in a hug around my mug, I felt right at home as we took our sweet time simultaneously solving the problems of the world and caffeinating our Saturday.

Consider the coffee drinks at The Bean Factory near the top of the ‘What’s Wonderful About Winter’ list.

We just may have to stop the hunt for our St. Paul Coffee Shop. Loved it!

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