Sun. Jun 16th, 2024

I’ve fallen victim to the trend that nearly all college students follow—drinking coffee. By finals week of my first year, I had a terrible problem with caffeine addiction. I had been consuming at least three espresso-filled cups a day just to prevent headaches. I pledged to never return to my old ways.

As the semester is progressing, however, I have been working on homework late at night. Being an English major, lots of my assignments are reading-related. Oftentimes, I nod off trying to be a student.

I swore off coffee for nearly two years, allowing a cappuccino here and there in celebration of pumpkin spice returning for the season. However, I have fully embraced the necessary drug returning to my life in hopes of completing my homework and passing my classes.

Coffee is bitter if you want it to be, but you can add a big spoonful of sugar without its flavor being lost. It’s a typical after-dinner, wind-down kind of drink. I thought exactly that as I walked all the way past the intersection of Gay St. and Church St. to Fenn’s Coffee.

I had been to Fenn’s before Friday, many times—for coffee, poetry readings, muffins and acoustic performances. When my coffee-dependent dad visited me on campus for the first time, we took a walk into town and stumbled across Fenn’s Coffee. He deemed it “some of the best coffee he ever tasted.”

I decided to order the “Iced Funky Monkey,” a chocolate-and-banana-flavored specialty drink that won best coffee creation in Chester County. I assumed I wouldn’t like it because the thought of banana and coffee together makes me gag a little, and writing that fact now makes me question why I did decide to order it in the first place; I was pleasantly surprised, to say the least.

The banana flavor tasted sweet, yet subtle. The touch of chocolate was a good choice. Usually iced coffee can taste a bit unmixed, but I got none of that. The drink was smooth and just overall perfect. I was almost mad over how wrong I was about the drink. I suppose it had to be on the menu for some reason.

Fenn’s offers typical café snacks like muffins, scones and cookies that pair perfectly with hot coffee—not to mention they’re just as tasty as their caffeinated counterpoints.

Although coffee isn’t an expected “Adventure for the Perfect Treat” topic, my experience at Fenn’s Coffee was enough for me to dedicate my time to writing it.

Any drinks at Fenn’s Coffee can be made iced or hot and you can enjoy your freshly brewed gift made from beans at the seating area in the small shop. The old wooden tables are a bit cramped together by the wide front window—in a cozy kind of way—and placed under an oversized grey-white ceiling fan that remind me of the one in the laundromat my grandparents used to own.

The walls are covered in vintage photographs of Fenn’s Coffee. The shop used to be called Fennario’s; I’ve heard that from regular customers. Fennario’s was bought by Justin Wilson and James Burk, who re-branded it as Fenn’s Coffee. Although they carried on many traditions of the owners before, such as the endless support of local artists via the open mic nights hosted upstairs.

Fenn’s Coffee hosts open mic nights in the room upstairs every Thursday  6:30 p.m. If you’d like to perform, sign-ups are at 6 p.m. If you don’t like to perform, it’s nice to observe musical and written talent for the night. The environment is very casual and warm.

Even if you just have some free time on a Friday, take the hike up to Fenn’s to grab a freshly brewed cup of joe and take advantage of the peaceful space to get some homework done—you won’t regret it.

I didn’t think I’d ever give a 10/10 for a review. However, there is not a thing I don’t like about this place. Maybe it’s the smiling baristas that make me hesitate to give Fenn’s Coffee a 9/10, or maybe it’s how freaking good the coffee is. No place is perfect, but Fenn’s Coffee is my go-to.

I’m trying to rate as objectively as possible, but I can’t take away the warmth I, personally, feel when I walk into Fenn’s Coffee.

Rating: 10/10

Kirsten Magas is a third-year student majoring in English with minors in biology and creative writing. 

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