I Ordered A Frozen Mudpuddle From The Mudhouse In Springfield Mo.
“Soy Chai Latte!!!”
The barista’s voice was upbeat as me and my two children (11 and 8) strolled in through the heavy, old-fashioned glass door at the front of the building.
Mudhouse Coffee, located at 323 South Ave in Springfield, is in the ‘heart’ of what true locals call the downtown area of Springfield.
Nestled snugly within a long line of connected storefronts that stretch up and down South Avenue, you could easily walk past it without noticing it if you happen to be looking down at your phone.
But even if you did… you’d likely still be able to tell by the smell that you had just walked past something interesting.
The Mudhouse Smells Like No Other Business In Springfield…
To me, the inside of the Mudhouse always smells of strong coffee, with hints of cocoa.
Quiet music plays in the background. Tonight, a cold Saturday in February, they happened to be playing what sounded like slow 90s-style alt rock tunes.
The music blended well with the steady ‘churning’ of the coffee grinder behind the bar. The level of noise was just loud enough that you could have a decent conversation without feeling like you were shouting, offering that subtle ‘air of privacy’ we don’t usually notice until dead silence falls in a public place… suddenly making us aware of the fact that everyone can hear what we’re talking about!
“Two Raspberry White Mochas!!!” The barista shouted, setting them quickly onto the bar as I walked up to give my order.
He was a well-dressed young man with a short beard. He was friendly and professional. He had that ‘college hipster’ look about him (which is probably a stereotypical thing for a 33 year old like myself to say… but hey, what can I say. I’m an edgy guy!).
I scanned the menu, which was very attractively written on a few different blackboards with colored chalk.
I found the frozen drink section, and my eyes came to rest upon a drink labeled as “their version of a frozen mocha.”
It was at this moment that I realized… I had identified my quarry.
The Frozen Mudpuddle Was The Drink For Me
I ordered my drink, and also a hot cocoa for my 8 year old daughter. Then, we turned our attention to the task of finding a place to sit… which turned out to be rather challenging at 5:45 on a saturday evening!
The inside of Mudhouse Coffee is actually really charming. There is interesting artwork covering most of the walls, including these really interesting photos of people getting paint splashed on them.
Every time I pass through for a coffee, I spend at least 5 minutes looking at those.
There is also a set of shelves where they peddle some of their wares… teas and coffees that enthusiastic coffee sommeliers can purchase and take home with them.
An array of tables, chairs, and couches adorn the inside. The lighting is gentle… generated mostly by quaint old lamps and hanging fixtures that give off a sort of soft incandescent light.
There is most definitely a ‘glow’ to the place, which makes it feel like a real local coffee shop.
There is a shelf of games for customers to play. My daughter snagged a deck of cards, and was instantly thrilled at realizing her odds of getting a game of go-fish out of me were high.
(She was right. She beat me at not only go-fish, but also slap-jack before the evening was over!)
My Frozen Mudpuddle Was Finally Ready…
Our drinks were ready within 10 minutes.
Not long after grabbing them and heading back to our seats (we found a comfortable couch and chair with a coffee-table to sit at), I heard the barista shout the next order.
“Soy Lavender Iced Mocha… With Almond Milk!!!”
But to tell the truth, my mind was already in high-gear, prepared to taste this glorious cold creation that I now held in my hands.
My first sip was lovely. It was definitely ice cold… and creamy.
The sugar-infused flavors of mocha and coffee blended together wonderfully. It was surprisingly refreshing for a coffee drink… though it didn’t taste ‘light’ or over-iced. It was definitely full-flavored.
In all honesty, it tasted like a ‘real’ iced mocha… heartier than the ones you get from the fast-food drive-through.
I’m not sure that you would want to consume these things on the daily; especially if you are on a calorie-restricted diet! But it was good enough that my time between sips was… predictably short.
4.5 stars out of 5, without a doubt… and this wasn’t my first frozen-mocha rodeo, either.
The Clientele Were Quiet And Polite… And Dare I Say, Interesting To Watch
There were a lot of people on their laptops. But this didn’t surprise me, seeing as how they do offer free Wi-Fi.
There were people talking, small groups seated around tables, and couples on coffee dates.
There were college students working furiously on papers, headphones plugged in… fueled-up on java and shutting out the rest of the world to meet their deadlines.
Nearby, a biker came in and sat down, clothed fully in his biker-garb. He set his helmet on the table, and proceeded to welcome a well-dressed friend in a suit to join him about five minutes later.
An attractive young woman with blue hair, dressed in black from head-to-toe, doodled little black hearts on a notepad as she enjoyed her coffee. She occasionally picked up her phone, giggled at whatever she saw, and would then hastily set herselt to the task of typing a reply.
All around me, people were enjoying their Saturday evening… as was I.
And for good reason. Everything was really nice. It was warm, the coffee was good, the atmosphere was pleasant… it was just a good time, no matter how you looked at it.
My Final Opinion Of The Mudhouse And My Visit
All in all, I would rate Mudhouse Coffee as one of my top 3 favorite coffee shops in Springfield.
They balance classic atmosphere in the seating area with modern professionalism behind the counter, and it shows.
The baristas seem to know their stuff. They get orders out quickly, seem industrious, and have always been incredibly helpful and polite to me… even on those days when I needed to ‘talk through my order ideas’ to figure out exactly what I wanted.
Would I go back? 1000%. I will always go back to the Mudhouse. It’s just such a mainstay downtown that it’ll never get old for me.
Plus, it’s a place where I can take my kids and feel confident that no crazy nonsense will happen. It’s a family friendly environment, and that’s a bonus.
Plus, the coffee is just really good. Let’s not forget that part!