By Lauren Justice, Staff Writer–


On Mar. 23rd, 2019, Mad Priest Coffee and Cocktails held their monthly Catechism at their location on Cherry Street in downtown Chattanooga.

The Catechisms provide an opportunity for locals and visitors to learn about coffee and tea as well as enabling them to discover different kinds of each. There are many types of coffee and tea available at Mad Priest that many people might not be familiar with, so the owners hold the Catechisms to enlighten people about them.

The classes explain the origins of coffee and how the plant is used to make the common, delicious drink, and they are taught by instructors Mark Stahlwood and Michael Rice. They also provide information on topics such as coffee origins, latte art, and extraction basics/ brewing science.

Stahlwood, lead barista for Mad Priest, said, “Our goal is to educate people and teach them how to do a professional evaluation on coffee and tea.”

The huge variety of coffee can be overwhelming to customers at times, so the Catechisms truly help people have a better understanding of the crop of coffee available to them.

Mad Priest Coffee and Cocktails has been hosting these Catechisms once a month for the past 6 months with the goal of analyzing and perfecting them. Their goal is to eventually provide them weekly, so “We’re spending this time refining the class,” said Stahlwood.

Mad Priest has two locations, one on Cherry Street and one on Broad Street. The Cherry Street location differs from the one on Broad Street in that it serves alcohol, whereas Broad Street does not. To bring people to the new location on Cherry Street and highlight all that it has to offer, Mad Priest decided to host the Catechisms there.

It is important to Stahlwood and Rice that people understand the importance of coffee and its history. Being aware of both makes the experience more meaningful for the consumer, for they can better appreciate what they are enjoying. Perfecting coffee, whether roasting, serving, or anything in between, requires a skill and talent that most people are unaware of, hence the importance of the Catechisms.

The classes are limited to ten people, as they take place in a smaller building with an intimate setting. Each ticket is $10.

Additional information on the Catechisms can be found on their website, EventBrite, and @madpriestcha social media accounts.

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