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Coffee is contentious and preferences vary wildly from friend to friend. Coffee shops can become popular due to multiple reasons, from having an alluring ambiance for dates, workspaces for studying, food options to pair with your hot bean water or to the actual product, good coffee.

When doing a simple “coffee shops in Stellenbosch” Google search, it is immediately apparent how plentiful the available locations are. However, as exams become a reality at the university, the demand for coffee on campus is sure to rise. As it stands, three coffee shops dominate the coffee sphere on campus, namely Pulp, DCM and MyBrew.

The coffee shop in Pulp offers three roasts of coffee, with Deluxe being the lightest roast, Häzz being a medium and Terbodore being the darkest. The baristas produce good shots of coffee and other than the fact that the Terbodore espressos often slide down your throat like hot Bovril, it is always a pleasantly speedy experience.

DCM is just a classic campus coffee destination with no real ulterior motives other than supplying students with their needed bean juice. The muffins are huge and, in times of despair, the zebra on the cup can act as a friendly face to look at before burrowing into the depths of the SS for another go at the books.

MyBrew started as a single store, after which it expanded to two other destinations on campus. Due to the popularity of it, I have always given MyBrew multiple attempts to change my mind, but the unfortunate sense of disappointment always washes over me when drinking their seemingly watered down and uninspiring brew.

Other Neelsie stores which you can go to are TaMaties and Java Junction, both of which act more of a one-stop destination, serving student-style foods and decent roasts of coffee. If you are looking to sit down and study for a while with a coffee supply at your ready, then definitely veer clear of the Neelsie.

Places which are both study friendly as well as excellent coffee shops include Bootlegger and Häzz, both on Ryneveld Street, or Deluxe Cof-fee Works and The Blue Crane and the Butterfly, both on Dorp Street.

Otherwise, if you want to try something exciting, you can go to the Stellenbosch University Botanical Garden, order a pot of Rooibos, connect to Maties Wi-Fi and power out a peaceful and relaxing few hours of studying.

Note: This coffee critique is based on a normal order of a double espresso and a glass of water.

Espresso is like the 100 m dash – it is straight, to the point and you are able to pick up the nuances of the bean, how it has been roasted, blended and brewed.

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