Distinctive aromas of caramel, cinnamon, pumpkin, and hazelnut waft past as you sip from a warm mug and snack on a delectable treat; the warm flicker of a candle as you cuddle up with a blanket on your couch and enjoy an order from a local café. These are perfect images of autumn.
The chilly weather of autumn balances perfectly with a warm pastry and a warm cup of a spiced beverage. Luckily, there are lots of cafés in the Oswego area that can provide anything you need to stay cozy this fall.
“The Village Grind has a super cozy vibe. It feels like you could be having coffee in your own living room,” says Ryan Pentzein, PLTW engineering teacher at OHS.
Located in downtown Oswego, the Village Grind has different freshly made baked goods each day, along with a wide variety of drinks and flavors.
The shop will create any specialty drinks all year round, including their fall drinks. The pumpkin-themed fall menu consists of 5 special suggestions: Toffee Pumpkin White Mocha, Dipped Pumpkin Mocha, White Pumpkin Frappe, Pumpkin Spice Latte, and their best-selling Toasted Marshmallow Pumpkin Latte.
I tried the toffee pumpkin white mocha and the toasted marshmallow pumpkin latte. The mocha reminds me of a sweet pumpkin pie: the earthy pumpkin is supported, but not overshadowed, by a bit of cinnamon. The marshmallow latte compliments the flavor of its espresso with a powerful taste of autumnal spices, such as nutmeg and cloves.
The baked goods are just as scrumptious.
As recommended by one of the workers, I tried a slice of blueberry peach pie. It has a thinly spread savory crust, and the sweet blueberries and peaches blend together to create a taste similar to blackberries.
This relaxing café in downtown Plainfield is a great place to sit and grab a drink, have some coffee with friends, or even enjoy a light sandwich or salad.
Krema has five unique drinks only available during fall: Better than Basic (pumpkin coconut latte), Pumpkin Pie Latte, Snickers Latte (caramelized peanut latte with mocha and caramel flavoring), Butterscotch White Mocha (butterscotch latte with white mocha flavoring), and Maple Peach Matcha (matcha latte with maple and peach flavoring).
One of the baristas suggested I try the Butterscotch White Mocha, and I also wanted to try a more unconventional option. I settled on getting both the Butterscotch White Mocha and the Maple Peach Matcha.
The Butterscotch White Mocha has a frothy latte base combined with a distinctly sweet white chocolate flavor that makes the drink perfect for anyone with a sweet tooth. The peach flavor of Maple Peach Matcha blends perfectly with Krema’s masterfully crafted matcha latte.
Anyone living near downtown Montgomery is lucky to have the confectionary’s sizable assortment of drinks and freshly baked treats.
Every morning, employees bake a few of each treat, then continue to bake them as they run out each day. Between their croissants, scones, danishes, bagels, muffins, and macaroons, Atrévete has covered all the bases for baked goods.
As a fan of pistachio, I had to try the raspberry pistachio croissant. The pastry had a perfectly flakey bake that melted in my mouth. A smooth pistachio puree is balanced out by a gentle, sweet raspberry filling.
As for drinks, Atrévete offers hot chocolate, tea, lemonade, and many types of coffee with a variety of flavors. However, the fall menu consists of only 2 items: Hibiscus Apple Cider and Pumpkin Spice Latte.
According to the barista, the Hibiscus Apple Cider is the most popular drink by a landslide. After trying the cider, the reason for its popularity was clear: the fruity flavor the hibiscus brings to the apple cider is incomparable.
An item on the typical menu—the Mexican Latte (hot chocolate with espresso and cinnamon)—caught my attention as well. The drink smoothly blended the intense flavors of espresso and cinnamon into a heavenly chocolate beverage.
Each café has a uniquely comforting environment that could make anyone feel at home: the comfortable vintage furniture of the Village Grind, the modern style mixed with the sweet community at Krema, and the unique rustic furniture and decorations of Atrévete.
If you ever feel the need to relax and grab a warm beverage or pastry, these hidden gems have you covered.
My name is Jessica VanVooren, and this is my first year on the 42Fifty publication staff. I am a junior in high school. I am a part of the OHS Horticulture Club and a member of NAHS. I also am in the combined OEHS and OHS robotics team.