How do you start your mornings abroad? Well, it usually looks something like this: getting lost, walking A LOT and finding the best coffeeshop, in hopes of meeting cool strangers. Thank you heavenly Gods, because that's exactly what happened in Ubud.
I've been way too damn scared to drive a scooter so I've depended on my handy dandy Google Maps to get me everywhere. Sure, it takes me 3 times as long, however, I feel as though I see so much more, even if that means getting lost (which has happened on so many occasions). This time around, I was perusing through Instagram and stumbled upon Expat Roasters. Initially, it was the aesthetic that drew me in, so I knew I had to pay a visit. But shoot, the company and pear granola + avo toast kept me longer than anticipated.
As you can see, this cafe is both aesthetically pleasing and mouthwatering. I wish the pear granola with pana cotta could be a staple at every cafe, but I guess that means I just need to come back. Plus, there's nothing basic about their avo toast - the mint and sweet drizzle made my taste buds mega happy. Now for the coffee...
It's extremely rare to visit a place, whether a cafe or restaurant and receive a deep dive into their speciality. In fact, you're lucky if you can meet the folks behind the social media or business. Luckily for me, I had the pleasure of meeting the wonderful ladies behind the marketing at Expat, as well as owner, Shae Macnamara. Shae humbly calls himself the 'head barista' however, he's the coffee connoisseur, who's won notable awards. Let's just say, he knows his stuff when it comes to anything coffee-related. I had the opportunity to chat with Shae to deepen my knowledge about coffee, including what sparked his interest in the field. One thing I learned was that the elevation of the coffee beans has a profound impact on the taste (had no idea). Additionally, when an espresso shot is broken down in three parts, you get three completely different experiences. In the photo above, you can see the image of the espresso separated; the first layer was light, a bit watery. The second layer is stronger in taste, and the third is a major kick, almost too much of a shock for my taste buds. But, I found it very interesting how one shot of espresso can give you three different experiences. Aside from coffee, I loved the community feel of Expat Roasters. From the moment I walked in, I felt super welcomed, all the way until the end, where I felt like I didn't want to say goodbye to friends - because that's all that matters, right? Good coffee with good people + conversation.
It's easy to feel like an outsider when traveling so I commend Expat Roasters for creating a space of community for travelers and locals alike. I look forward to my next visit! And if you're in Ubud, you need to add this to your list of places for a cup of coffee + anything on their food menu (srsly).