I drink a lot of caffeine, so much so that I’ve recently decided to cut it back pretty drastically to improve my mental and physical health (yikes).
It also means that I’ve drank a lot of coffee in the Pullman-Moscow area, and I’m happy to suggest three of the best local coffee shops, in no particular order, for you new and returning Cougs alike to check out this fall:
Pups & Cups Cafe
Loyalty Program: Yes
Specialty: High-quality locally-sourced coffee beans
Pups & Cups is owned by CJ Robert, WSU kinesiology and pre-med alumni, who originally hailed from Austin, Texas. Robert allows you and your pup to enjoy your coffee together.
Pups & Cups is temporarily closed as they moved to a new location to give more space to the dogs. It is set to open mid-fall, but the new location still fulfills Robert’s desire to inspire her customers. Their hot chocolate would have to be one of my favorites.
The inspirational and vibrant artwork and high energy are paired beautifully with their coffee, which Robert is extremely selective about.
“It’s quality … single batch coffee made right in Spokane,” Robert said. “We’ll have drip coffee from Jamaica — Blue Mountain Jamaican coffee — $43 a pound, and that’s our drip coffee.”
She said she goes to Jamaica once a year to pick coffee beans and sells it in November. Robert said she’s excited for students to return to Pullman because she’s inspired by the Pullman community.
“You can literally turn to someone in the grocery store … and become best friends. I love that,” she said. “I still feel just as accepted [now] as I did [then] … and I will do everything I can to continue to see that flourish.”
Bucer’s Coffeehouse Pub
Loyalty Program: Yes
Specialty: Cubano espresso shots
Bucer’s (pronounced Boot-zers) Coffeehouse Pub in Moscow is one of my personal favorites. They host live music, serve beer and wine, sell cigars and tobacco and have deals every day of the week.
The business began as a roaster in Lewiston before changing to a coffeehouse in Moscow about 20 years ago.
Owner Pat Greenfield said the best daily deals are the Cubano – their unique drink with espresso pulled over sugar – Saturdays, where you can get 50 cents off a Cubano order, and $1 Americano Fridays. I hate Americanos, and even I took advantage of the $1 Americano Fridays because the coffee is so good.
The Pullman community is really involved at this Moscow coffee shop, too, as WSU music students and faculty frequently play on the inside or outside stage.
“[The students] are very vital,” Greenfield said. “They’re an integral part of our success … and great customers … Students are making so many decisions about their lives … and I really love that.”
On top of their bakery case filled with food is a gigantic wall of books patrons can read or purchase. They also have board games on their community table.
Thomas Hammer Coffee Roasters
Loyalty Program: Yes
Specialty: El Diablo Mocha (mocha and jalapeno powder)
Thomas Hammer may be a chain out of Spokane, but coffee shop manager Shelby Sater said she is dedicated to her Pullman community and giving the “locally-owned” experience.
Driven by customer satisfaction and hospitality, Thomas Hammer employees make sure experience is perfection from the moment customers walk in to the moment they finish their coffee.
This coffee shop has a more modern vibe than the last two, and Sater said they host a range of customers from business meetings to families. She said she loves the way the company treats the employees.
“I’ve honestly never worked for a company that really cares about its people [like this],” she said.
Instead of having “fluffy” and extraneous drinks, they’re coffee-centric and focus on the quality of their espresso and beans.
Thomas Hammer is open for both breakfast and lunch. It offers breakfast burritos made in house that sport a unique hashbrown, and a bacon Gouda breakfast sandwich featuring a killer pesto aioli. You can order online using the Joe Coffee app.
Sater said she wanted to stress her dedication in making sure students and customers felt like Thomas Hammer is a local business.
“I’m always sad when [students] leave,” Sater said. “They contribute a lot … giving us that bond [with them].”
Sater said Thomas Hammer’s status as a chain is less important than their environment.
“Yeah, we’re a smaller chain,” she said, “but our employees don’t make you feel that way. We care about [customers] … and can’t wait to see them next time.”