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Everything you need to know about the Mile High City

Category: Coffee (Page 1 of 2)

Crema Coffee House

Noah and I ran in the same circles in college at Fort Lewis in Durango and lived across from one another on Third Avenue and Florida. Back then, I knew him as the super warm guy across the street who had Ini Kamoze for a ringtone on his mobile phone and hosted paper bag wine parties in which we rated our favorites with sharpie.
The Fika Passport Espresso

He moved to Denver long before Drew and I did but I didn’t really know what he was up to until Courtney told me he owned and ran Crema, The Populist, and Finn’s Manor. I should have been able to do that mental math myself because when we waited tables together as college tots, he was always a customer favorite and hungry people constantly asked to sit in his section.

Crema latte

Now that I have that smug “I know people” brag out of the way, let me state that Crema makes the best latte in Denver County. My version features almond milk but the bean selection at this little corner of Larimer and 29th is the cat’s pajamas. Drew can’t get enough of their espresso (varieties include Novo, Intelligentsia, Boxcar, Huckleberry Roasters, and Stumptown, to name just a few) and they also sell pastries, breakfast bites, and fresh juice. On a recent visit, we used the FIKA passport, which brings my husband total glee. He loves points, deals, and loyalty. It his jam, his jelly, and his peanut butter.

Crema mural

Go to there. Okay, bye!

Crema is on the book of Faces, Twitter, and Insta.

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The Fika Passport Espresso

The 2016 Denver FIKA Passport


The Swedish concept that basically means to relax and have coffee in the afternoon with friends or family. This idea of slowing down and taking time out of your day to enjoy your coffee instead of rushing off to the next thing is what fika is all about. This experience is worth slowing down for and so is the coffee itself. Two Parts, the folks behind The Passport Program, is betting that the people of Denver will agree too.

The Fika Passport Denver

Here’s how it works: From April 1 through October 1, present The Fika Passport to the barista at one of the participating coffee shops (full list below) for the deal. At checkout, the booklet will be stamped. It’s that simple.

The cost of entering into the world of fika will only set you back $20. The new passport went on sale last week and will inevitably sell out soon. Just like The Winter Warmer and The Denver Passport (which sold out in a week last year), you can buy yours on the Fika Passport website. Clare excitedly suggested I title this blog post, “The Fika Virus,” and I told her that it’s inappropriate.

As always, follow along with The Fika Passport on:

Here are the coffee shops participating in the 2016 Denver Fika Passport:

  • Allegro Coffee Roasters
  • Amethyst Coffee Co.
  • Bellwether
  • Black Black Coffee
  • Black Eye Coffee
  • Boxcar Coffee Roasters
  • Coda Coffee Co.
  • Copper Door Coffee Roasters
  • Corvus Coffee Roasters
  • Crema
  • Denver Bicycle Cafe
  • Hooked on Colfax
  • Huckleberry Roasters
  • Little Owl Coffee
  • Lula Rose General Store
  • Luna Gourmet Coffee & Tea Co.
  • Metropolis Coffee
  • Novo Coffee
  • Pablo’s Coffee
  • Purple Door Coffee
  • Stowaway Coffee + Kitchen
  • Sweet Bloom Coffee Roasters
  • Two Rivers Coffee
  • Weathervane Cafe

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Allegro Coffee Roasters Sign

Allegro Coffee Roasters Tennyson

Allegro Coffee Roasters has been around since 1985. It’s a Boulder institution and I’m sure you’ve seen them before in your local Whole Foods. Since 1997, Allegro Coffee has been selling their coffee in the responsible grocery chain but it wasn’t until recently Allegro Coffee Roasters or ACR branched out and opened niche stand-alone stores across the country featuring micro- and nano-coffee to their customers.

Allegro Coffee Roasters Tennyson Bar

For one reason or another, Allegro hasn’t had an opportunity to open their own stores but that all changed on November 18, 2015 when they launched ACR Tennyson on the corner of 41st and Tennyson. This is the 3rd ACR in the country, only following behind Brooklyn and Berkley. The Denver location occupies an old hardware store in a space that dates back to 1917. The floors, beams and brick walls — including the original advertisements — are all original.

Allegro Coffee Roasters Tennyson Menu

The space is modern without being pretentious. Stadium seating near the front doors remind me of where the cool kids would hang out on the bleachers in high school, but updated for the 21st century. I really enjoy their attention to detail with the design of the 4,000-square-foot space. Copper accents. Simple lines. Marble countertops. The powder coat La Marzocca espresso machine imported from Florence. Everything that you see has been thought through with incredible care.

Allegro Coffee Roasters Tennyson Seating

One of my favorite areas is along the north wall at one of the floating counters beneath the copper mirrors. From here you can get a great view of the space. The old hardware store’s sign is behind the 30-foot long marble counter. The area to your left is where you can pick up all of your coffee and coffee accessories.

Allegro Coffee Roasters Copper Mirrors

Allegro Coffee Roasters Tennyson Denver Shop

Allegro Coffee is all about connecting the farmer to the guest. There are 19 coffees or so on the menu that will take you around the world. In fact, for the adventurous, ACR has taken a note from our local craft beer friends and created a coffee flight. That’s one coffee, three different ways.

Allegro Coffee Roasters Tennyson Latte

For those on the go who just want a traditional cup of coffee, they have you covered with their Batch Brew. Brewed fresh every 30 minutes, their Batch Brew will give you the caffeine you need without sacrificing quality and fast.

As a nod to the Tennyson area, ACR named their house espresso the Mister Twister in honor of the old rollercoaster at Elitch’s off of 38th. The best part? It tastes pretty good too.

Allegro Coffee Roasters Tennyson Espresso Machine

What makes Allegro unique in the ever growing Denver coffee scene is three fold. First, they are the only coffee roaster in the state using a Loring Roaster. That means that they’re taking the environmental impact of their coffee roasting process seriously. The Loring reduces up to 80% of energy consumption compared to traditional roasters. They also have one of, if not the only, BKON brewer in the state for all you craft tea lovers out there. This $40,000 machine crafts to its optimal flavor extraction, but the whole process takes only 60 to 90 seconds. Most importantly though is their never ending quest of sourcing the best coffee from around the world and presenting it in a way that the grower would be proud of. I can’t think of another place in Denver that offers such a wide variety than ACR Tennyson.

Allegro Coffee Tennyson Latte Art

If you decide to go, you’re going to want to try the Sulawesi Toarco Peaberry. It’s my favorite. If that doesn’t work for you, the Borgia is the house special: a mocha with orange rind/zest, made famous in Florence.

Allegro Coffee Roasters Chemex

I’d also like to thank Olivia Miles, Head Roaster, for walking me through a fantastic cupping. You’ll probably see Olivia working tirelessly in the back near the roasting equipment. She’s got a big job ahead of her because come January, ACR Tennyson will be producing enough coffee to supply all of our local Whole Foods stores. This means incredible coffee will only be as far away as your nearest Whole Foods.

Allegro Coffee Roasters Tennyson Copper Mirror

Allegro Coffee Roasters Tennyson will be open every day from 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the corner of 41st and Tennyson.

Check Allegro Coffee Roasters out on:




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Purple Door Coffee Five Points Denver

Purple Door Coffee

Purple Door Coffee is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced.

Purple Door Coffee Front Counter

Denver is in no shortage of great coffee spots. “Third Wave” or just downright incredible coffee is all over the Mile High City and I’m not complaining. What makes Purple Door Coffee unique from everywhere else in town is what they stand for.

The Purple Door mission.

Purple Door Coffee Menu

Madison Chandler and Mark Smesrud, co-founders of Purple Door Coffee, “employ teens and young adults who have been homeless and want to leave homelessness behind.” Through a 52-week curriculum, Madison Mark, and others offer at-risk youth a valuable trade that they can take with them wherever they go.

Purple Door Coffee Inside

Denver has seen a 153 percent increase in homelessness over the years and Purple Door Coffee is doing their part to combat the problem head on.

All you need to do is take a look at Purple Door’s Facebook page to find an example of their impact. Recently, Joe graduated from the 52-week program and will be returning to the store as a manager this month!

Purple Door Coffee Graduation

Photo taken from Purple Door Coffee Facebook Page

Oh, and what about the name, ‘Purple Door Coffee,’ you might be asking yourself?

“Our name comes from the fact that historically the color purple is the color of royalty, and we truly believe that every person, no matter their station in life, has unsurpassable worth and value and deserves to be treated like royalty.” – Madison Chandler, Co-founder of Purple Door Coffee

The next time you find yourself in Five Points in need of some great coffee, do yourself a favor and go to one of few places in Denver where the staff will treat you as though you walked in with a crown on your head.

Purple Door Coffee Counter

Connect with Purple Door Coffee:




There was also this…

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The Molecule Effect Coffeeshop Denver Mural

The Molecule Effect

Connecting the Santa Fe Arts District with coffee, wine, and new art, The Molecule Effect is designed to bring people together in a modern, industrial art gallery.

The Molecule Effect - Art Installation Interior

I had no idea where I was going. Somehow I ended up on Santa Fe in search of something new. Exhausting most coffeeshops in LoDo, I was on the hunt for a brand new spot to work for a few hours. Driving by 12th Ave. and Santa Fe, I spotted a mural on the side of a grey building.

I parked the car, snapped a few photos and realized that this wasn’t a random piece of street art, but was the side of The Molecule Effect.

As soon as you walk in, your eyes are welcomed with a sea of bright colors and thought-provoking artwork hanging on the walls.

The Molecule Effect Counter Coffeeshop

I can’t think of another coffeeshop in Denver where the artwork is so important to the design of the space.

Molecule Effect Art Gallery Interior

The artwork is so integrated into The Molecule Effect that you forget that you’re actually in a coffeeshop and not an actual art gallery. It’s a beautiful space.

Serving Kaladi Coffee, local craft beer (Strange when I was there), kombucha on tap and Colorado wines by the glass, the owners of The Molecule Effect are happy to explain the variety of menu options. I had a double shot of espresso, for a change of pace.1

The Molecule Effect Water Tap

Be sure not to miss the cool industrial water tap to the right of the table where you’ll find lids, napkins, and the like. Pro Tip: you’ll want to turn the handle from 9:00 to noon to get the thing to work.

The Molecule Effect:

  • Open from 6 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday – Saturday
  • Open from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. on Sunday
  • Don’t miss their weekday happy hour, 5pm-7pm for 20% off all drinks
  • Connect with them on FB, Twitter, and Instagram

The Molecule Effect Art Installation

1…massive sarcasm

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