“Coffee smells like freshly ground heaven.” -Jessi Lane Adams

Ahhh, simple morning pleasures, like a cup of coffee with the newspaper. You’ve got the newspaper. Now, where to get that coffee?

I made it through raising children and three college degree programs and without ever drinking a cup of coffee. I only got hooked on java about five years ago, after my daughter, Bella, a coffee aficionado, somehow convinced me to give it a try. There’s no going back now, and I wonder how I could have gone all those years without a daily cup (or three) of liquid happiness. Bella has created a coffee snob. I like mine tall, dark, and sweet. It seems like there are as many ways to take your coffee as there are coffee drinkeers, and I decided it was time to write a guide to where you can get a cup of coffee here in Ripley. I am still relatively new-ish to the area and want to be sure I try a cup of coffee everywhere it is served locally. I also wrote this guide for other coffee devotees, and other “would-be” coffee drinkers, who, like me up to five years ago, have never even had a cup, but might need encouragement to try it. My managing editor, Hunter Givens, is one of these people. He has never had a cup of coffee. Maybe, after reading the guide, I can convince him to try a cup of liquid happiness! Whether your coffee ritual is a vital part of each morning, or if you’re just a casual drinker, I’m spilling the beans this week, telling you where you can get a cup of one of God’s finest creations here in Ripley, listed in no particular order. This list was compiled with the help of my well-caffeinated Facebook friends, and I have provided a few of their actual reviews in the guide. From black coffee to complex concoctions with long names, Ripley has got you covered. Perhaps you’ll be inspired to try a new coffee!

Grace Café’ Eatery, Lounge (108 S Commerce St, Ripley, MS 38663): Grace uses High Point Roasters coffee, brewed locally in New Albany. Indulge in a classic latte or classic regular coffee. Their Caramel Macchiato has the perfect splash of sweet vanilla with a hint of caramel. They love any chance they can get make a drink special in more ways than just one. For example, their hand-scooped Oreo Milkshake is a nice way to treat yourself, but with the added espresso that treat will keep on giving and carry you through your busy day. Their coffee bar is open 7 days a week, 7AM-8PM. This is my suggestion for “would-be” coffee drinkers who really aren’t sure what or how to order. Just tell the baristas what flavors you like and they will help to customize a coffee to meet your preferred flavor palate.

Grace Bistro & Bakery: Check it out to get the same great coffee offered at Grace Café, with the added benefit of enjoying freshly baked donuts with your coffee. Why not treat your office to coffee and donuts?

Shirley’s (911South Main Street, Ripley, MS 38663): Long illustrious local history of coffee and conversation. Sandy Buse, the owner, had an idea to give the morning regulars their own coffee cups with their names on it. Although that tradition has passed, it is still a great place filled with local color and down-home charm to get your morning brew.

The Square Nutrition (111 N Main St, Ripley, MS 38663): This is coffee with a twist. Protein coffee keeps you full and is a great way to start the morning and is offered either as low-sugar or sugar-free. The Square Nutrition offers blondie, caramel macchiato, caramel mocha, French vanilla cappuccino, chocolate mocha, iced mocha frappe, pralines and cream, salted caramel mocha, salted caramel iced coffees: all the same great flavors you could find at other places without the sugar. You can get it either hot, cold, or blended. Each coffee has about 24-27 grams of protein and 200-240 calories. Caramel macchiato, blondie, and salted caramel mocha are the best sellers.

Rip Town Nutrition (618 City Ave N, Ripley, MS 38663): They will deliver if you have an order of three drinks or more, which is convenient! Get your office’s orders together and start the morning off right. Rip Town Nutrition also offers yummy, sugar-free and low-sugar protein coffees. Protein coffees are 24-27 grams of protein, less than 250 calories low sugar, low fat, and low carb—perfect for folks like me, who follow a Keto diet. They have many flavor options. Their most popular coffees are salted caramel, caramel, and mocha. They can make them over ice or blended.

Huddle House (924 City Ave S, Ripley, MS 38663): Huddle House is known for serving nostalgic, comfort food with authentic Southern hospitality. Our HH in Ripley has been a past top restaurant for the BEST in the Nation Award in the past and still keeps up the same standards. Their coffee blends are made up of different green coffees from around the world. Common coffees that are used in Royal Cup's blends are Colombian, Mexican, Central American and Brazilian.

Dodge’s (104 South Highway 15, Ripley, MS): Your standard gas station coffee. Dodge’s offers regular, decaf, Columbian, hazelnut, French vanilla, white chocolate caramel, cappuccino, high octane French vanilla coffees in sizes small, medium, and large. Hope had to grab Dodge’s a few mornings before reporting to Seersucker Hall for work. She said she liked it because they offer liquid sweeteners.

McDonald’s (202 MS-15 N, Ripley, MS 38663): This is FGG’s favorite place to grab a cup of coffee in Ripley. He takes his coffee black, like his soul. You can explore the full McCafé® menu online for a selection of espresso drinks and coffee at McDonald's. Enjoy a classic, caramel, or vanilla iced latte, frozen coffee drink, hot cappuccino, or caramel macchiato, and more. Nothing sits on the shelf for long because they have so many customers.

Burger King (102 City Ave N, Ripley, MS 38663): Their coffee selection is worth trying out. Affordable but not lacking in taste, the Burger King coffee menu offers many popular coffee beverages. Whether you like a standard black coffee or prefer a cool frappe, Burger offers a variety of drinks, such as: iced vanilla coffee, iced mocha coffee, mocha frappes, café caramel frappes, and more.

Jack’s (200 City Ave S, Ripley, MS 38663): Jack’s special 100% Arabica blend is available in regular and decaf in 12 oz. or 16 oz. cups. They also offer mocha, caramel, vanilla, and salted caramel iced coffee in four flavors and two sizes: 16 oz. or 32 oz. Try a cup today, and you’ll agree that Jack’s coffee has a rich flavor and smooth finish.

Maybe you’d prefer to just enjoy your coffee at home because of the COVID surge. I’ve got you covered!

McDonald’s coffee is available as McCafe: Most McCafé packaged coffees are available in K-cup pods and ground bags. Use the McCafé product locator on mcdonalds.com to find the specific blend flavors available at local retail locations. Just enter your zip code into the store locator.

Rip Jax (220 N Main St, Ripley, MS 38663): Micah Jade Davis-Hurt said on my Facebook: “Rip Jax at home, for their Black Rifle and Jack Daniels coffee! with the Black Rifle, I love the smoothness of the flavor. I go for the Murdered Out and Black Beard’s Delight, but I’ve tried them all and love the rich, bold flavors. The Jack Daniels: I like the unique taste, since the whiskey barrels are used (no alcohol content, though).

Stephanie Sonwineski agrees: “The black rifle company coffee from RIP JAX is amazing!!” FGG and I were given the Jack Daniels coffee as a Christmas gift from Hope, and, although the smell caught us off-guard (it smelled like JD), it tasted really good!

You also can order it online at : www.ripjax.com/product-category/coffee/

Beth’s Bungalow (116 S Main St, Ripley, MS 38663): Joyce Graddy says, “For someone who drinks black coffee now but used to be all about coffee with flavored creamer, I love My Brother's Cup coffee. It has all the flavor without the carbs. Confidence Factor is my favorite!My Brother’s Cup is, according to the company website, coffee that heals. They contribute profits from coffee sales to bring hope, help and healing to the hurting—the multitudes caught in the trap of sex trafficking who are suffering mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally, churning in devastation. Based in Belden, but roasts in Fulton. Normally, there’s a pot of My Brother’s Cup coffee brewing at Beth’s. Southern Roasted Pecan is my personal favorite of all the take-home coffees featured in the guide.

What’s your favorite place to fuel up on caffeine? Did I leave any places out? What’s your favorite way to take your coffee?

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