When you first begin your journey as a college student, you need to make some adjustments. You leave behind your family, your dogs, and, in my case, Colectivo. As a Milwaukee native, Colectivo was basically my second home. This coffee shop was home to my many study sessions, and it was my go-to place for the best Chai latte in the city. When I came to Northwestern, I resorted to other coffee shops (and sub-par Chai tea lattes).

Then, Colectivo Coffee opened a store in Lincoln Park, and I may or may not have taken the train an hour to do homework there. Imagine my reaction when I recently discovered that the beloved coffee shop planned to open a store in Evanston in place of Radio Shack. Let's just say, I may or may not have cried.

Although I'm completely aware that Evanston is home to many coffee shops (think Coffee Lab, Cupitol or Kafein), none of these guys compare to Colectivo. Here's why Colectivo should be your next go-to coffee shop. 

The Ambiance

What differentiates Colectivo's ambiance from other coffee shops is its laid-back vibe that ensures a productive and stress-free experience for its customers. Every Colectivo Coffee embodies the same lively, bright, and aesthetically pleasing atmosphere. The large tables, abundance of seating, and even the old indie music sets Colectivo up to be the perfect coffee shop. 

Spoon tip: Be sure to grab a sticker at the register. 

The Food

What most coffee shops lack in food, they usually make up for with their coffee. With Colectivo, however, this shop offers more than just pastries or a limited selection of pre-made salads or sandwiches (nothing against you, Starbucks). You can get a tasty meal and delicious coffee at Colectivo. What a time to be alive. 

With its all-day breakfast menu, you can opt for my personal favorites: a potato bacon burrito, baked oatmeal, or an avocado BLT at any time of the day.  Colectivo also takes pride in making its food with local ingredients. The best part aside from the variety and taste? It's actually affordable. 

The Drinks

I think it's important for coffee shops to satisfy both the avid coffee drinker and the "I'm not really a coffee person" crowd. With its diverse drink menu, Colectivo satisfies both types of people. Select locations even carry Colectivo beer. According to the website, Colectivo sources coffees from origin and roasts every batch by hand. The organic, fair trade, single origin and blended coffees will meet the standards of the everyday coffee drinker. My personal favorite? The Nicaragua blend.

And if you're not much of a coffee person, Colectivo has you covered. Make sure to try the Mango Peach Ginger Smoothie or the Sportea.

Colectivo hopes to open its doors in the place of Radio Shack in Evanston in the near future. If you're looking for an alternative to the sometimes over-crowded and tiny coffee shops in Evanston, give this Milwaukee-based coffee shop a try. With its tasty and versatile menu of both food and drinks, I promise you won't be disappointed.