Following a completely sold-out event in 2014, Sacramento Caffeine Crawl will return to the city next week with an all-star lineup of some of Sacramento’s finest coffee establishments.
Similar to a pub crawl — only with a caffeine buzz — the event features a 10-shop lineup with six routes to choose from, including three bike-friendly routes, two short walking routes and one driving route. Attendees have a chance to choose from morning and afternoon classes that explore roasteries and cafés with rare behind-the-scenes looks. During the fixed four-hour routes, which are hosted by knowledgeable tour guides, crawlers hear a short presentation from the roaster or barista, followed by a hands-on brewing demonstration and the all-important tasting opportunity.
Founded in 2009, The LAB (the creator of Caffeine Crawl) was originally created to assist craft and specialty beverage companies with their marketing efforts. The Caffeine Crawl events were added in 2011 to connect communities to their local coffee scene and to highlight the people who run the cafés. The events are hosted throughout the country, but not always in the most expected locales. “We like to focus on smaller and underrated coffee cities that have vibrant coffee scenes,” says Sadie Renee, event coordinator for The LAB.
With an impressive social media following of 8,000 enthusiasts, The LAB relies on organic promotion and media partnerships to promote its events. “We have a good connection with local roasteries and cafés across the country, as well as a very engaged customer base,” says Renee. “With these events, we give the shops the opportunity to reach their customers in a way they wouldn’t normally be able to.”
Participating shops are chosen based on their impact in the community and their commitment to promoting a quality coffee culture, of which Sacramento has many. “We’re thrilled to be a part of advancing coffee culture and connection in the already thriving Sacramento coffee scene,” says Renee.
Pachamama Coffee Cooperative participated in the 2014 Sacramento Caffeine Crawl and is a returning shop this year. “We had a great response the first year we participated, so we jumped at the chance to sign up again,” says Mollie Moisan, director of cooperative development. “ This event provides us with a great opportunity to connect with people who really care about coffee and to share our passion for how great coffee happens.”
A coffee roaster that is fully owned by coffee farmers in five different countries, Pachamama Coffee Cooperative was founded in 2001. The cooperative opened its first Sacramento location in midtown in 2012 and moved the coffee operations there last year. In 2013, it opened a Davis café and in 2015 another location in East Sacramento. “With this year’s event, we are excited to offer a more in-depth look at our new facilities and share our business model with other coffee enthusiasts,” Moisan says.
Insight Coffee Roasters is another repeat shop to the event. Since late 2011, when Insight launched its first café in the southside neighborhood of downtown Sacramento, the roaster has grown to four shops with two more in the works. Three of the cafés are downtown and one is located in the Pavilions Shopping Center. In November, Insight added fresh baked goods to its repertoire, hiring Figs & Feta pastry chef Alexandra Salidas Roll as its full-time baker. The pastry menu changes with the season and features a variety of breads, muffins, croissants and scones, plus a Solidas Roll specialty — dark chocolate sea salt and caramel baklava. To educate its patrons on the intricacies of producing quality coffee, Insight offers monthly tastings and classes on sourcing, roasting and brewing.
Insight views the Caffeine Crawlas an opportunity to bring attention to its own business as well as other roasters in the region. “We are always looking to build community around our cafés, says Brittany Hansen, public relations and event coordinator. “The Sacramento Caffeine Crawl puts a real emphasis on the quality shops and coffee culture that we have here in Sacramento.”
The Sacramento Caffeine Crawl is set for Saturday, March 5 with morning routes starting at 9:00 a.m. and afternoon routes starting at 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. Tickets are $28.00 each. Participating shops include Vaneli’s Handcrafted Coffee, Insight Coffee Roasters, Temple Coffee Roasters, Old Soul Co., Chocolate Fish Coffee, Pachamama Coffee Cooperative, Shine Sacramento, The Mill, The Trade Coffee & Coworking and Naked Lounge. For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.