Q: What are the best cafés in SE?

A: Well, there’s certainly no shortage, my friend. Stumptown Coffee Roasters has its original location, where they still roast beans, at 4525 SE Division Street. A possibly more popular location at 3356 SE Belmont Street also features a tasting annex next door. There, they provide daily "cuppings" at noon and 2pm where they lead a crowd of whoever happens to wander in through an elaborate process of smelling, slurping (loudly), and judging new varieties and experimental roasts side-by-side.

One time I was there when the owner, Duane Sorenson, and his head roaster were there going through the process. At the end, they looked at each other and compared their 1-100 point scores on a given bean: "98?" "97." I was still trying to figure out how the silver slurping spoon worked!

If you’ve never heard of Stumptown, you should be aware that they have taken on a new level of fame and success with their expansion into Seattle and recent opening of a Manhattan café. You should also check out this new Time Magazine article entitled, "Is Stumptown the New Starbucks – Or Better?"

To cut to the point, you’re getting world-class coffee right in your backyard. Southeast has begun to gather the attention of writers and magazines from across the nation, blurbs of the neighborhood cafés are collecting an impressive portfolio of upbeat reviews that are causing people to relocate here from around the globe. Our awareness is rapidly growing and we love it, but not as much as we love our coffee!

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