One of my favorite things to do when I arrive in a new city is to get coffee. Not “multi-million dollar food-chain” coffee, but “local, independently owned coffee shop” coffee. I’ve found that visiting an Independent coffee shops gives you a hint of what the community has to offer. There are no less than a dozen in Moncton. So after moving here, one of the first places I visited was the popular Café Codiac.
My first impression was how spacious it was, with lots of room for everyone for a variety of clientele. The café has ample seating and big bright windows that exude a warm and friendly vibe. They day I visited the shop was filled with seniors, moms with strollers, students with iPads and local business people.
And then there was the smell. With coffee beans roasted right on site, the aroma was intoxicating.
Owner Cayley Montague was kind enough to give me some insight about his shop and Moncton’s coffee culture. “Monctonians love their coffee.” he says. And at his shop, “the darker the better”. The popular Codiac Black Blend is the cafe’s most requested offering.
Café Codiac prides itself on roasting its beans onsite so customers are sure to get the freshest cup possible.
“On Tuesdays, visitors can chat with the roast master to learn about the coffee and find out what we’re roasting for the week,” says Montague. “Coffee is a very perishable item and within three weeks you begin to lose half of the flavour no matter what packaging you use. We want to make sure every cup is fresh.”
The decaf coffee is one of my favorites from the Café. Robust and fresh, it tastes fantastic and, being decaf, I can drink it without guilt as an afternoon treat.
Café Codiac is an extension of the Down East Coffee Company, one of New Brunswick’s pre-eminent coffee roasters. Headquartered in nearby Notre Dame, Down East has been roasting beans for 20 years, and providing quality coffee to shops and restaurants across the province. Down East has also had a long-time presence at the year-round Moncton Farmers’ Market.
If you want a little snack to go with your drink, the shop’s food menu offers wholesome, additive-free baked goods, smoothies, and fresh-daily soups and sandwiches – all made from products supplied by local vendors.
“It’s really important to us to support the local market. We are a small independent company and we want to support the other businesses in our community,” says Montague. “For our soups, we buy our meat fresh at the local Farmers’ Market. We buy local produce, as well as breads and baked goods from the Market.”
Another unique feature of Café Codiac – its one-of-a-kind drive-thru service. Like the shop itself, the drive-thru is a unique experience. Drivers pull up to the window and ring a doorbell.
This service is Moncton’s first and only independent drive-thru. It’s probably also the friendliest as drivers are face-to-face with a real person when they give their orders.
“Our drive-thru definitely offers a little more of a human or personal touch than what’s out there,” he says.
And it’s that personal touch that keep customers, like me, coming back.
Corner of St. George Street and Mount Royal Blvd.
Stay tuned here and I’ll post more coffee shop adventures in the future.