For the next three installments of Munchy Mary, this food fighter is going abroad to the wild and exotic land of Joplin. Cue the intense Jaws theme music.
To prepare for the journey, Munchy Mary is beginning with the wide array of coffee in Joplin. Although there are Starbucks on every corner and in every grocery store, the real heart of coffee in Joplin lies in the three current hip and happening local coffeeshops. These are Joplin Avenue Coffee Company, Joplin Greenhouse and Coffeeshop, and Zinc Coffee. Let’s see which one of these coffeeshops was caffeinated, kicking, and ready to step up to the delicate, ready for a shot of espresso, plate.
For this journey, we went with age before beauty. First up on the list was Joplin Avenue Coffee Company. This was certainly the coziest of the three coffeeshops. As soon as you step in, it just feels like coming home – if your home was a cute hipster coffee shop with what feels like a speakeasy attached to the back. The whole set up was warm and inviting, but still maintained just the right amount of coolness. The drinks, however, left something to be desired. For our caffeinated option, I went with a Marilyn (caramel and white mocha latte). The drink overall was a bit too sweet, and it was easy to tell that its base coffee lacked flavor and had an odd consistency. On the non-coffee side of the street, the drink of choice was Mudd Puppy. Basically, it was a chocolatey, ice creamy, Oreo delight that was a heart attack waiting to happen. The syrup-y taste was overwhelming at times, but overall OK.
Next up on the list was the most niche option of the group Joplin Greenhouse and Coffee Shop. Most people don’t see a greenhouse and think, “Wow, I should be able to get my plants AND my coffee in the same place!” Luckily, the owners of the Greenhouse had these thoughts and created this delightful treat of a coffee house. The whole vibe screams “Fresh”. Fresh plants. Fresh coffee. Fresh yum. And the coffee itself is absolutely wonderful. The coffee option of choice was a simple pour-over. This coffee was so rich and fragrant without being overwhelming in smell, flavor, or overall experience. For a non-coffee option, I went with a London fog. This drink had me saying “Bloody H*ll, is this delicious!” Poor choice of British vocabulary aside, this delicious tea treat was too yummy for words.
Finally, it was on to the baby of the group. Zinc Coffee has been in operation for a few months and is currently thriving. Initially, they got bonus points for being the only one of the three with a drive-up window. Their furniture and overall feel is elementally adorable. It is fairly minimal, and it is a very calming place to spend way too much time studying. To switch things up, I went with the non-coffee drink first. I thought I was getting a simple hot tea. What I actually received was a loose leaf treat that was equal parts soothing, aromatic, and delicious. I could have sat there all-day drinking cup after cup of hot tea. The coffee option, however, did not live up to the hype of the hot tea. I went with the Van Goght which is an iced vanilla oat milk latte. It was too sweet and not enough body or flavor. I actually went back up and ordered a second hot tea to make up for it.
All three coffee shops put up a good fight, and while they are all worth making a trip to the next time you visit Joplin, the clear winner of the bunch was Joplin Greenhouse and Coffee Shop. This place is a delight to visit and the drinks make you feel almost as at home as the customer service does. If you’re in the mood for a chill place to study, or just a nice treat, be sure to stop by and soak up the coffee goodness of Joplin Greenhouse.