I’ve had my fair share of coffee from Java City, Einstein’s, Coates and Mabee, but every once in awhile, I have an itch for a really exceptional cup of joe that the school’s coffee just can’t scratch. On such occasions, I brace myself, grab my keys, ignore my lazy impulses and actually leave the Trinity bubble … astonishing, I know.

The question then surfaces: “where should I go to get my fix now?” Here are just a few of the many coffee shop alternatives to add to your daily dose of the school and mainstream brands:

Candlelight Coffeehouse
3011 N. Saint Mary’s St.
Candlelight’s posh interior makes you feel pretty classy as you sip a big cup of primo coffee. They’ve also got about any flavor additive you can imagine to give your palate a bit of variety. It’s a great place to meet up with friends for some late night caffeine.

The Brown Coffee Co.
1702 W. Kings Highway
This isn’t really a place for you to go to get your caramel macchiato. Here, coffee is king and they like to serve it straight up. As they pour you a meticulously crafted cup, they’ll explain the how and the why of good coffee making. If your curiosity is piqued, keep an eye out for their occasional coffee-tasting classes.

Grace’s Coffee Café
3233 N. Saint Mary’s St.
For those of you who don’t have access to a car or a friend to mooch off of, Grace’s Coffee Café is an easy walking distance. Located right next to the YMCA, Grace’s offers the passing student a great place to stop, have some coffee and maybe use the free Wi-Fi to do some homework.

Local Coffee
5903 Broadway St.
Of all the coffee houses in San Antonio, nothing says local coffee like, well, Local Coffee’s coffee. Here, they take their brewing very seriously and use advanced micro-roasting techniques in an effort to produce the perfect cup.

Olmos Perk
5223 McCullough Avenue
Olmos Perk boasts a contemporary atmosphere and a friendly staff. Their bakery is delicious, and their coffee, in addition to tasting pretty darn good, has some fantastic looking foam art on top of it.

Lone Star Espresso
7050 Bandera Rd.
When you drive up to Lone Star Espresso, it literally looks like a little shack in the middle of a concrete parking lot behind a Whataburger. In a word, it is a dive, but dang do they make some good coffee. The evergreen favorite of this place has to be the Mexican Mocha, which is a delectable mixture of hot chocolate, espresso and cinnamon. Just make sure to bring cash; they don’t take cards.

So remember, the next time you’re heading to the one of the school’s dining areas in search of that life-sustaining elixir, think about checking out one of these places or any other independent coffee shop you can find. Unless you want to be forever doomed to a diet of mainstream brands, get out of the Trinity bubble and try some coffee soon!