Taste Test

Craving Caffeine from Around the State

We sampled caffeinated brew from 5 different Rhode Island shops


We all know that there’s basically a Dunkin’ Donuts on every Rhode Island corner, and there’s nothing particularly wrong with that – God knows we all went through an extra extra phase. But with all the local food options available, it only makes sense to try some of the roasted coffees Li’l Rhody has to offer. And the best part is, no matter where you live, there is one in close proximity to you.

Just the Right Roast
The Coffee Exchange’s Wickenden Street Blend had a pleasant citrus aroma, touches of tartness and an overall tangy taste with a touch of pepper. All of these subtle flavors added to a coffee that was just plain delicious, whether you prefer roasts on the light or dark side. 207 Wickenden Street, Providence, 273-1198.

Berry Good Drinking
“This is really sweet without having any sugar in it,” were the remarks of one of our staff members. We could actually taste the fruity, berry notes at the end of each sip of Mzuzu coffee from Empire Tea and Coffee. The complexity reminded us of Earl Grey tea and something you’d want to drink in the afternoon with a yummy cake. 22 Broadway, Newport, 619-1388.

Big Bold Flavors
The beans from Coastal Roasters’ Fog Cutter dropkicked us in the face with its toasty, rich and dark notes. With such a bold aroma and flavor, we thought it would pair perfectly with any dunking donut to add a bit of sweetness to the brew and bitterness to the donut. This is the coffee we want at every diner we go to! 1791 Main Road, Tiverton. 624-2343.

Wake Up and Drink
“It’s the stuff coffee commercials are made of,” were the remarks of one of our staff members. The Bolivian Jacinto Titrizo blend from Updike’s Newtowne Coffee Roasting Company and Cafe had a smooth and easy drinking quality about it while the roasted caramel notes were easy to pick up. The sweet notes were so obvious it made us think of caramel popcorn! 7726 Post Road, North Kingstown. 295-5300.

Citrusy Sipping
This bold Honduras Los Portillos from New Harvest Coffee was love at first sniff. We could actually taste hints of citrus, apricot and grape. For a coffee, it was very fruity but not overpowering. The roasting aroma was also very strong and rich, but it went down as smooth as butter. 1005 Main Street, Pawtucket, 438-1999.