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2014 Upper Valley Coffee Shop Guide

Nov 13, 2014 08:03PM ● By Ryan Frisch
French Diplomat, Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord, enjoyed his coffee, "Black as the devil, hot as hell, pure as an angel, sweet as love." Whether you prefer your coffee dark or light, sweet or bitter, iced or hot, the array of coffee establishments in the Upper Valley all offer a unique experience and environment.

The Dirt Cowboy Cafe located at 7 South Main Street in Hanover

Just a stones throw away from the Dartmouth Green, the Dirt Cowboy Cafe offers an experience as intense as their 100% Pure Arabica bean coffee.

College students eagerly scavenge for a perch to place their laptop, while locals catch up in the fast moving line. The loud murmur is sporadically interrupted by the hum of juicers, coffee grinders, and baristas yelling out ornate orders.

Dirt Cowboy Cafe

The Dirt Cowboy offers a vast variety of individually brewed coffee. Their options include beans from every corner of the world from Ethiopia to Brazil, roasted in small batches. Famed for their attention to detail, the cafe relies heavily on customer feedback to improve their blends. For instance when hearing that the Sumatran blend was too "biting", the roasters lightened the coffee and it went on to be the third best-selling coffee. As the owner says. "See, we don’t tell you what’s good – you tell us...and when the boss speaks, we listen".

This  has made The Dirt Cowboy a local favorite, averaging 600 customers a day and earning them the title of “Best Gourmet Coffee Shop” in the region for seven consecutive years. Its popularity creates a somewhat hectic and crowded environment during peak hours but is high on the list as  a great place to get quality coffee on the go or to study or read a book. 

Umpleby's Bakery & Cafe located at 3 South Street in Hanover

If you are looking for a meeting spot for gabbing girlfriends or curious colleagues Umpleby's Bakery & Cafe is more conducive to conversation. The bakery was established in Vermont in 2000, and moved to its current location in Hanover in 2007.


The interior offers a soothing environment, with large tables and high, wood-beamed ceilings. In the summer months it also offers outdoor seating on a side patio. Charles and Carolyn Umbleby strive to create a "happy and neighborly environment", for their customers.

The homie environment is seen in every aspect of the cafe from the freshly baked meat pies and cookies to the local artwork lining the walls. Exhibitions are  rotated on a weekly basis. The walls currently highlight the work of  photographer Matt Storm who captured the lives and stories of people living in a 600 people Himalayan Village in Nepal.

The TuckerBox located at 1 South Main Street in White River Junction

If you are looking for an escape from your home, try the The TuckerBox. This cafe offers a worldly and exotic experience. Owner’s Jackie and Vural Oktay strive to bring the elements from Vural’s upbringing in Istanbul into this cafe. Sitting on the corner of South Main Street, large windows shower a large communal table with natural light. This layout fosters a community feeling and energy that Jackie and Vural are proud of saying, "Tuckerbox is a gathering place for locals to drink great coffee and espresso, eat great food, and to be together with one another."

The TuckerBox

The menu offers non-traditional breakfast items as well, such as the Mediterranean Breakfast Plate which includes boiled egg, Turkish white cheese, Mediterranean green and black olives, tomato, cucumber as well as the more classic granola parfait.

Mon Vert Cafe located on 67 Central Street in Woodstock

If you are a more traditional breakfast eater try Mont Vert Cafe. Comfy couches and arm chairs offer an inviting environment.  The cafe offers organic and locally sourced breakfast sandwiches. Their no frills approach offers simple and delicious options such as two egg sandwiches with the choice of classic toppings such as tomato or avocado and the slightly more exotic olive Tapenade or chipotle aioli. 

Whether you are looking for a quick pick me up on the way to work, or a cozy heaven to socialize the Upper Valley is not short of options. 

Guide created by Allison Hanley | Did we miss your favorite coffee shop? Let us know!

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