Every coffee lover has that bucket list of shops they want to visit. Whether your pilgrimage is to Stumptown or Blue Bottle, Intelligentsia or even to the original Starbucks, there’s something special about visiting a well loved shop that just knows coffee really well. As “The Pattern of Coffee and People”, Houndstooth Coffee in Austin, TX was one of those shops for us. (Seriously, we had been looking forward to it for a year.)
When you walk into Houndstooth, some of the things you’ll be sure to notice (granting the fact that most of the walls are made of glass) are the clarity and brightness that the room appears to emanate. Accompanying the shop’s classic colors of black and white, are pleasantly placed red tiles and blooming fresh flowers in clear vases. The layout is simple, yet incredibly charming. As you approach the bar, you will notice to your left a menu-like board with the espresso and pour over options that they are serving that day.
It’s Austin, so you just know parking is going to be rough. We were able to find an open spot at a lot just a few blocks away, but be prepared to pay for parking and to walk to your destination if you venture to the location on Congress. Lucky for you (and us!), Houndstooth is right in the middle of downtown, just a few streets over from the Texas State Capitol! It is located on the corner of 4th and Congress, right next to Frost Bank. In addition to this centrally located spot, there are two more shops in Austin, one on MLKJ and the other on North Lamar Boulevard.
If it tells you anything about how incredible our experience was, this section of the blog was the hardest to write. We were absolutely speechless. We ordered pour overs of the Kalita Wave method, which was absolutely amazing. The coffees they offered for espresso were Vixen (a blend from Tweed Coffee Roasters) and a single origin, Ecuadorian coffee called Los Romerillos. [Hint: Los Romerillos has peach, honey, and crisp tasting notes, and is a washed varietal coffee dried on the patios of the coffee farm.] As for the pour overs, they offered the Los Naranjos coffee on Kalita Wave, which is characterized by its juicy, brown sugar, and citrus tasting notes. And secondly, El Guayacan from Peru on Clever, a creamy, fudge and toffee styled coffee that is also washed and sun dried.
Want to check out more coffee from Tweed? Visit this link!
Scope of Menu
Houndstooth has all of the standard espresso drinks, brewed coffees, iced coffee, and several tea options. If you’re so inspired by the fresh coffee you get from Houndstooth, they have an exceptional selection of coffee merchandise so you can make your own perfect cup at home! Just be sure to grab a bag of coffee before you leave!
Houndstooth’s drinks are all moderately priced, and the incredible quality of every drink makes the price well worth it. Espresso beverages range from $3.50 for espresso to a $5 latte. Their pour overs are typically around $4.35, but vary slightly based on the method and coffee used. Traditional drip will only cost $3, and cold brew is $3.70. If you’re wanting tea, you can get a pot of loose leaf tea for just under $4.
One of our favorite things to do is talk about coffee (obviously), which is why Houndstooth was so high up on our bucket list of shops to visit. The two baristas we met were absolutely incredible, and exceeded every ridiculously high expectation either one of us had. Not only did they make a Grounds for Travel approved crazy-awesome pour over, but they also kindly answered our questions about the menu. As we were getting ready to pay for our coffee, we decided to buy a bag to take home, When we asked the barista what she would recommend, she took the time to come around the bar and offered a beautifully crafted description about each single origin. This is not your average coffee shop. [Pro-Tip: We ended up taking home the Coshaco coffee, which is a rare Nyamasheke, Rwanda single origin. This coffee is a washed and sundried processed coffee (check out our article on coffee processing to understand even more about this!!) with concord grape, fruit punch, and floral tasting notes.]