Coffeenuering Challenge #4 – Baba Coffee in Carlsbad,CA

Week #4 – Baba Coffee Friday, October 28

2727 State Street #100
Carlsbad, CA 92009

Located in Carlsbad Village, the “downtown” of Carlsbad, CA, Baba coffee sprang onto the burgeoning coffee scene sometime late summer.  We were one of the first set of regular patrons, and with it being located on a convenient spot on the return trip from our northern ride to Oceanside Harbor, it has become a favorite spot to stop.  The last few times we were there it was quite crowded and there were few places to sit with a group, but today we had plenty of options.  The shop is conveniently located next to a brand new, extremely popular restaurant called “Campfire”, and directly conjoined to one of my favorite new local finds, Carruth Cellars Winery, an urban winery headquartered in Solana Beach (urban winery = make wine in a setting clearly not where the grapes are grown, bring in grapes from the best vineyards in CA).


You might be wondering where the name “baba” came from, and if there was in fact a 16th century coffee bean smuggler by that name.  With a quick search, I found the following on Wikipedia:

Baba Budan was a 16th-century Sufi, revered by both Muslims and Hindus, whose shrine is at Baba Budangiri, Karnataka, India. He is said to have introduced the coffee plant to India by bringing seven raw beans from the port of Mocha, Yemen while coming back from Haj. In those days coffee was exported to other parts of the world in roasted or baked form so that no one could grow their own and were forced to buy from the Yemenis. He brought seven beans because the number 7 is considered sacred in Islam. The coffee plants were then raised at the place that bears his name. – Wikipedia (

The shop gathers the best ingredients from many local businesses in the area, including Pannikin Coffee & Pastries, Prager Brothers Bread, VG Donuts and Tea Gallerie.  At an appropriate “it’s 5 o’clock somewhere” time, you may also want to indulge in their craft beer offering by the can.

Ride Summary:

Distance:  ~21 miles

Weather:  Typical San Diego Day, mix of clouds and sun, light breeze and high 60s

Group Size:  We started with maybe around 12-15 people.  Jill had to head off to work, and a small group broke off due to a flat and then enjoyed another local coffee shop, meeting up at the end.  There are a few “regulars”, but the group varies a lot which makes for great socializing.

What I ate and drank:  Pumpkin muffin and blood orange tea (hot)

Here’s how the conversation usually goes when I approach the counter and ask what kind of muffin/bread something is, “What is that one?”

“It’s pumpkin…” starts the server.

“I’ll take it,” I interrupt.

I don’t love pumpkin everything, but a pumpkin baked good I’ll take every time.


Pumpkin muffin and blood orange tea.  

We usually line our bikes up flat against the walls in the walkway between all the new shops.  I have heard talk of a bike rack getting put in, but for now this usually serves our purposes quite well.


On the return trip, we get to enjoy perhaps the only dedicated bike/pedestrian only pathway in Carlsbad.  Unfortunately, it is extremely short (maybe a mile), but good while it lasts.


I’ll leave you with a few more shots of the shop.

And lastly, a shot of Jill in her street clothes.  She joined our ride for the first few miles, made a quick stop for a coffee, and then headed on to work.  I certainly miss the days when I used to ride my bike to work every day in Idaho – there is something freeing about riding a bike in street clothes.


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