Hudson Valley Coffeehouses

More than just a place to get your jolt of java, local coffeehouses offer live music, original artwork — and the chance to meet and mingle with your neighbors


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crafted kup coffeeAn artful design from Poughkeepsie’s Crafted Kup

Photograph courtesy of Crafted Kup

Which coffee shop do local residents like best? Readers of this magazine gave that honor to Poughkeepsie’s Crafted Kup, which they voted had the Best Cup of Coffee/Latte in the Valley last year.

The shop, located within walking distance to Vassar College, has all the fixings of the typical college-town coffeehouse — minus the flocks of students crowding out the locals. “We have a good mix here,” notes owner Ken Craft. “The college students make up only about 25-30 percent of our crowd. Everyone else ranges from children to people in their 70s and 80s.”

The Crafted Kup’s beverage menu includes fresh, locally roasted JB Peel coffees. The organic Woodstock blend — a mix of South and Central American beans — is like the town itself: bold, full of flavor, and just plain groovy. “Next to regular coffee, our lattes are the most popular drink — especially chai,” Craft notes. Foamy cappuccinos, creamy cocoas, and natural fruit smoothies are also available. Cupcakes by the Groovy Baker (of Dutchess County) fill a glass case along with bagels and other pastries from Formisano Bakery in Saugerties, Bread Alone Bakery (based in Boiceville), and Wild Hive Farm Bakery in Clinton Corners.

The laid-back space has a come-and-stay-awhile atmosphere: overstuffed chairs surround a table full of books and magazines, a nearby shelf holds board games, and various smaller tables line the opposite wall. “It’s very upbeat here during the daytime,” Craft says. “We have a lot of regulars who come in for lively conversation. As the day progresses, more people settle in with computers, but it picks back up again later. It’s just a really nice place to be: great food, great coffee, good soup, and good people.”

Who could ask for anything more?

» Get the entire list of fine Valley cafés here

Did you know...

  • Coffee is the second most popular globally traded commodity, just after petroleum.
  • Coffee has its own official holidays in Costa Rica (September 12), Ireland (September 19), and Japan (October 1).
  • When it’s in full bloom, a coffee tree is covered with about 30,000 white flowers, which develop into fruit the next day. Coffee trees can flower up to eight times per year.
  • In 2001, Brazil produced a scented stamp promoting its coffee industry. The scent lasted up to five years.
  • When shopping for scented candles or perfume, taking a whiff of coffee beans in between sniffs will allow you to smell each scent more clearly.
  • There are about 1,200 different chemical components to coffee, many of which help to make up its distinct flavor.
  • Plants love coffee, too: Keep snails and slugs out of your garden by sprinkling used coffee grounds around the base of your plants. Feed yellowed houseplants a mixture of coffee grounds, sugar, and water to help revive them.
» Get the entire list of fine Valley cafés here


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