posted on January 18, 2012 16:21
The following blog was written by Dr. Cameron Jorgenson, our Assistant Professor of Christian Theology and Ethics and Resident Coffee Expert. Thanks Dr. Jorgenson!
As soon as coffee is in your stomach, there is a general commotion. Ideas begin to move...similes arise, the paper is covered. Coffee is your ally and writing ceases to be a struggle.
Honoré de Balzac (1799-1859)
In college I discovered coffee. At first it was a pragmatic relationship: a major project was due and I needed to write quickly and well; therefore, I needed something to jolt me awake as I burned the midnight oil. A stout mug of coffee was just what the doctor ordered; it was love at first sip.
About that time coffee shops of all kinds--major chains, scrappy independents, and Christian coffee houses--began to spring up everywhere. So, coffee became more than a study tool, it became a significant component of my social life, too. It has remained that way ever since. Thankfully, I have found that there are plenty of places near Campbell Divinity School where I can continue my tradition of caffeinated work and play.
So, where exactly does one find a great cup of coffee in and around Buies Creek? Here are seven solid suggestions about where you can either unwind or find your liquid muse (and finish your paper on time):
1. The Library – One of the best features of the new library is the 24-hour study area and its Starbucks machine. Consider it Campbell’s investment in your intellectual pursuits! This machine allows you to brew either a cup of hot cocoa or Starbucks coffee (with your choice of either freshly ground House or Verona beans). But, be aware: while there are small cups of creamer and sweeteners available, this is not a full-service coffee shop with thermoses of half & half. Making a knock-off latte could be a bit awkward.
2. The Student Center – For those willing to pay for a fancier drink, there is a Starbucks station in the Wallace Student Center. You can get mochas and the like here, but be sure to approach the experience with realistic expectations: while they use Starbucks products, the menu is limited and the staff has not been through barista boot camp.
F.W. Bean – For my money, this is the best coffee in Harnett County. Housed in a quirky, little shop in downtown Lillington that is primarily designed as a drive-through, F.W. Bean offers excellent drip coffee (particularly the Ethiopian blend), and expertly crafted lattes. You’ll feel great about supporting a local business, and you’ll like the unique monthly drink specials that allow you to broaden your horizons with new flavor combinations. Of course, you’ll also appreciate that the prices are consistently lower than Starbucks. Aside from the lack of seating, one drawback is that F.W. Bean caters to commuters and is only open from 6 AM to 4 PM. (http://www.fwbean.com/
Coffee Society– Another good coffee option nearby is Coffee Society. It offers pastries, bagels, a full range of excellent coffee drinks, and comfortable seating. While the hours can be a bit unpredictable, this is the most traditional coffee house near campus. (http://www.harnettonline.com/businessinfo.cfm?b1=216
Inspirational Grounds– This family owned and operated coffee shop serves far more than coffee. Its sandwiches, soups, and desserts are excellent and a welcome addition to the repertoire of near-campus dining options. (You can check their Facebook page for daily soup offerings.) Because it is housed in what was once a large Japanese restaurant, it has ample seating and excellent room for group meetings; in fact, last semester my evening theology class met there for dinner and a class session. Inspirational Grounds is a bit of a drive from campus (15-20 minutes) but it is well worth the trip. (http://www.inspirationalgrounds.com/
Stick Boy Bread – Further from campus in Fuquay-Varina is one of my favorite places for excellent coffee and beautiful baked goods. Stick Boy Bread offers Larry’s Beans coffee (a fair-trade, locally-roasted coffee), a selection of specialty coffee drinks, and the best artisan breads and cookies anywhere. Truly, this is local business as its finest. (My personal favorites: a large cup of black coffee and either an oatmeal chocolate chip cookie or a cinnamon roll with cream cheese. And be sure to pick up a baguette or a loaf of roasted red pepper bread for dinner!) (http://www.stickboyfuquay.com/
Starbucks in Fuquay Varina – Of course, there is an honest-to-goodness Starbucks relatively nearby. It may not be a local independent business, but these folks can make some great coffee. Best of all, three years ago today, I took Kelly (Campbell Divinity School’s Director of Admissions and my wife) on our first date there. Fond memories, for sure! (http://www.starbucks.com/store/10951/
So, yes, there are plenty of good coffee options around Campbell Divinity School. May you find a great cup of coffee and may it propel your writing to new heights!