Starkville natives are familiar with the Strange Brew Coffeehouse, a popular coffee shop on the corner of Highway 12 and Spring Street. The coffee shop opened in 2005, and, according to their Facebook page, a second Strange Brew location opened in Tupelo, Mississippi in August 2017. Following 18 months of construction, Midtown gained the third Strange Brew location Monday, Dec. 30. Its convenient location puts the new Strange Brew next to Stromboli’s Italian Eatery and the Starkville Public Library.
Katelyn Reed, the co-owner of Strange Brew, shared details about their decision for the third location.
“We initially had another location in mind for our third store, but when this opportunity presented itself, we couldn’t turn it down. We’ve always wanted another Brew in the heart of Starkville. The first Strange Brew will always be our baby and first love. It’s really fun to have two places that feel different but still have the same heart,” Reed said.
The exterior of the coffee shop has a modern, clean appearance with two signs from both angles of the street. There are outdoor tables, including a covered area. A walk-up ordering window exists for people walking dogs, which is a pleasant touch for Midtown residents.
All it takes is one look at the logo to see the aesthetic they were going for. There are seven themed chandeliers that give a soft, inviting glow while their art-deco style invokes a 1920s theme, proving to be a fun nod to the 2020s. Everything is either blue, white, black or gold. A star-covered design is featured around the shop and on the labeled cardboard coffee grips. The inside has a clean, modern atmosphere which is reinforced by the exposed white ductwork and the spotless preparation area. The indoor tables are designed for the small space. Each table can comfortably host about two people, even though there are four chairs placed around the tables.
After taking in the atmosphere, you begin to notice the quirks and subtle décor. A central wall has wallpaper that features a dark blue background with gold stars that happens to match the couch pillows as well as the coffee grips. Altogether, these design elements make the entire aesthetic choice seem magical. Other decorative items that add a nice touch are an antique radio, the door to the toilet and the trash can shaped like a rocket. As for the seating arrangements, there is a small bar that has four chairs facing Main Street, blue velvet chairs and two comfortable couches. Numerous shelves display their merchandise, which consists of mugs, stickers and metal-insulated travel cups. Prepared bags of fresh coffee are also available.
Visiting the shop on a Tuesday afternoon, I was met with a small tiled logo at the front door which brought a smile to my face. For the most part, the lines were around 10 people at the most. It was hardly packed, with plenty of room for customers who stayed to drink their purchases and enjoy the atmosphere. I was pleasantly surprised that it was not overly noisy, with the tall ceilings contributing to the noise deduction. With the light music playing in the background and the noise deducting ceilings, I would certainly consider this to be a decent place to study.
The new location has an expanded menu that features ice cream, pastries and other café items; however, the menu does lack prices. Despite the absence of prices on the menu, my order turned out to be reasonably priced. I was able to order a 16 ounce Toasted Coconut cold-brew coffee for $3.50.
As the daily selection goes, it was probably the best coffee I have ever had, and I am not one for hyperbole. It was phenomenal. Compared to Starbucks. The local excellence of Strange Brew coffee makes it no contest. If you are a fan of Nine-Twentynine Coffee Bar, there is a bit of a challenge. As a cold-brew guy, I must admit that Strange Brew has better options. There were four available choices compared to the singular cold-brew offered by Nine-Twentynine.
Most college students do not have the means to spend over $3 on daily coffee. I am not a big coffee drinker, but I know quality when I see it. As a small indulgence, I have found it to be worth the price. If you are on campus, your main options will be Starbucks or making your own coffee. If you need a large area to study, Nine-Twentynine Coffee Bar is the more accommodating option. If you want the best tasting coffee in town, along with a wider variety of choices, I recommend you go with Strange-Brew. Regardless of your choice, it is always nice to know there is a great new location in Starkville to suit the needs of coffee fans.