As much as we all adore a pumpkin latte in the fall, sometimes one needs a break from Starbucks. It’s getting hard to remember what life was like before Starbucks; it’s so familiar and predictable (translation: boring and overpriced). Enter Muggswigz. In case you are one of the many Cantonians who never ventures downtown, let me be clear: if you have not had coffee at Muggswigz, you are missing out. Muggswigz is unquestionably the best place in town to get coffee. And tea, we can’t forget the tea. Of all the great downtown Canton restaurants that thrive for a minute, then quietly disappear, you might think our city’s little downtown is practically lifeless. That is, until you step into Muggs.
In writing this post, I learned some things about Muggs, (a little bonus to having a food blog – you actually start reading and learning stuff about the places you frequent). First, Muggswigz roasts all of their own beans on-site, which means that each cup of coffee served is made with really fresh beans (less than ten days old). They also make many of their own syrups in-house and have award-winning baristas (did you know there was such a thing?) at the coffee bar preparing drinks.
Now, onto the real reason to love Muggs. Meet the Purple Picker Upper, my favorite coffee drink anywhere. Ever. Period.
The Purple Picker Upper (PPU) is a cappuccino drink with dark chocolate and lavender, topped with whipped cream and lavender syrup. This concoction is pure heaven. I’m convinced the perfect (food) marriage would be the Muggswigz PPU and Pistacia Vera‘s lavender and honey macaron. Lavender has such a unique flavor that goes so well with coffee and sweets. This is a treat that you’re definitely not going to find anywhere else, and is well worth the drive downtown!
The mocha latte seems to be pretty popular as well, but typically I shy away from mochas, due to their potential of having just too much chocolate (major pet-peeve at Starbucks). This one was delicious, although the chocolate flavor was rather strong; a little mocha goes a long way.
The ambiance at Muggswigz is casual and warm. There are always jars of baked goodies and treats (like biscotti) on the counter, although I never partake because the PPU is pretty sweet on its own. The interior design is unpretentious and comfortable, with hodge-podge furniture, but somehow it still works. Muggs is always bustling with young people and college students (I assume from Malone), many of which you will find seated around what looks like a conference table with leather executive chairs. Pretty strange, but again, it works. Something else to check out, I hear they have open-mic poetry nights and occasionally live music.