Get your coffee fix at Mocha Mott’s

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An iced mocha. —Marnely Murray

“Actually, this seems to be the basic need of the human heart in nearly every great crisis — a good hot cup of coffee.”  —Alexander King

A good hot cup of coffee is essential to my day. I need about two or three cups during the off-season, and about the same during the summer — with the addition of two shots of espresso and a natural energy drink. I know I’m not alone; I have close friends who admit to their coffee habits, whether it’s their obsession with a particular drink from a local coffee shop or their craving for extra whipped cream. Personally, I enjoy my coffee black with raw sugar at home, but when I’m out and about, the possibilities are endless. Serve me up an iced mint latte in Edgartown, or the perfect espresso shot if I’m lucky enough to be invited into Todd Christy’s realm.

I met with Mocha Mott’s co-owner Meredith Aldrich at the Vineyard Haven coffee shop, and I got a dose of caffeine while we chatted about what Mott’s is all about. “More than coffee, we are part of people’s daily morning routine,” Meredith said.

Mott Hinckley opened the original Mocha Mott’s in 1994, and Meredith and Tim Dobel purchased the coffee business in 2001, opening in Vineyard Haven in 2004. Sixteen years later, Mott’s is a staple in people’s daily lives. I can understand why. When you walk into the cafe, the environment exudes a good vibe, one where you feel welcomed and part of a coffee-loving family.

When Meredith’s cellphone timer went off, she quickly excused herself to take the banana bread out of the oven. I quickly followed the aroma, and as she pulled the bread out, the entire store filled up with the sweet aroma. Everything is freshly baked in house, except the bagels; they take a ride over on the Patriot every day from Cape Cod Bagels. Whether it’s a healthy Pumpkin Seed Bar (no gluten, no dairy) or a decadent Chocolate Ganache Brownie (all gluten, all dairy), there’s something for everyone at Mott’s. Explore their offerings like coffee cake, lemon blueberry pound cake, strawberry cream cheese muffins, and sticky buns on weekends.

Since spring has finally arrived on-Island, I decided it was time to have my first iced coffee of the season, and Mott’s Iced Mocha was just what I needed. It was going to be my fifth cup of the day, so I requested decaf, which I never do. (I also tend to never have five cups of coffee, and didn’t want to find out what sort of magic happens when I do.) A blend of cold chocolate milk and espresso is served over ice and topped with the thickest, richest, just-sweet-enough housemade whipped cream; this coffee drink can seriously replace a dessert any day. I enjoyed the fact that it wasn’t packed with sugary syrups, although if you’re a fan, they have a list of syrups ready for you. All the unflavored coffee used at the cafe is fair trade and organic — the fair trade part being the most important to me, as it assures me coffee farmers are getting fair pay for their harvest. It’s good to see a local business partake in that process.

Walk into Mocha Mott’s and feel like you’re part of something bigger — a coffee-loving community on this small Island. Follow them on Facebook at facebook.com/Mocha.Motts/ for daily updates.