Sunday, October 28, 2018

2018 coffeeneuring challenge # 5 & 6: ashland, oregon

Just got home from a week in Ashland, Oregon, seeing the final week of plays in the Oregon Shakespeare Festival's 2018 season with family and friends. Knowing that there'd be a lot of sitting around, Idecided to take the folding bike and run it through some longer paces.

In order to accommodate the show schedule (6 plays in 5 days), I opted to do # 5 early in the week, a stretch of the rules but still well within the spirit of coffeeneuring.

Ride # 5: Case Coffee, Ashland.

This began with a ride around downtown Ashland to see the lay of the land by bicycle. The folder worked beautifully and once I dialed in the saddle height I was very comfortable.
First stop: Brothers Restaurant, where I was treated indifferently by a distracted waiter and served a small coffee for three bucks that turned out to be lukewarm and weak.
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I didn't sip it until I'd gotten back to my bike, so by then I decided not to make a stink. But I knew I had to find something better or I'd be sad all afternoon.

So I saddled up and rode out onto Siskyou Boulevard, out to the far end of Southern Oregon University, where I saw a cafe called Case. I decided to toss my coffee and try again.
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I was pleasantly surprised. The coffee was fresh, hot and had an interesting almost floral finish that worked well with cream and sugar.
I would return to Case three more times during my stay in Ashland, because the coffee was simply and reliably awesome every time. I learned that there are two locations: "Upper" Case on Siskyou (whee they roast their beans) and "Lower" Case on Lithia Way (a smaller, more intimate location)  near our hotel. Both had great coffee and a nice selection of pastries.

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The ride there and back was lovely and allowed me to see more of Ashland than just the downtown quarter neat the OSF theatres. I'll certainly visit Case again next time I'm down there.
Total: 5 miles

Ride # 6: Pony Espresso, Ashland.

This began with word first thing in the morning about the synagogue murders in Pittsburgh, PA. Sweetie and I were devastated but knew the place to go was the shul where we'd planned to attend services anyway. I decided to take the bike so I could have a slightly longer a ride out into the country to Temple Emek Shalom. The community was warmly welcoming and glad to have us join them, and praying with them was a balm for my head and heart. I promised that I'd return when my travels brought me back to Ashland.

After services, I took a scenic route back to town along the Bear Creek Path and wound up at Pony Espresso Cafe, where I stopped for a fresh cup of Columbian and a piece of lemon pound cake I'd brought along from the Oneg Shabbat table at the shul. Nice combination. And a longer ride on a gorgeous day that was sunny and unseasonably warm, with a high of almost 70F.
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Total: about 7 miles.

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