Coffee as a Verb
The Rose Establishment
235 S. 400 West, SLC, 801-990-6270
At Caffe d’Bolla it’s all about what’s in the cup; at the Rose, it’s all about where the cup is. Erica O’Brien wanted to open a place “where you could sit down with your best friend, face-to-face, and chat over a cup of coffee.”
O’Brien created a mellow atmosphere, contrary to the image of high efficiency projected by so many chains. “A place that invites you to linger and sip, not grab and go,” she says. A place to converse, not text. No wi-fi, but a shelf full of board games. You know, like Scrabble. And oh yeah, great coffee from FourBarrel in San Francisco, which sources and roasts with respect for the individual complexities of the beans. Recently, The Rose added a full kitchen, so “having coffee” can mean a full meal.
Coffee as Hipness Arbiter
315 E. 300 South, SLC, 801-364-3448
Coffee is cool. It always has been. Anyone remember Audrey Hepburn talking philosophy in the smoky Parisian coffeehouse in Funny Face? Coffee is the traditional beverage of beatniks and artists, philosophers and revolutionaries. And so it is in SLC. Nobrow believes that “coffee is as much about the relationships you build as it is about the products you serve” and that “fine quality foods and beverages should never be elitist, they should always be accessible to everybody.” Yes, a coffeehouse with a manifesto. And a gallery. Coffee is excellent, from Intelligentsia, Salt Lake Roasting, Counter Culture and Coava, among others. Art is by local artists.
And if you need further proof of cool, Nobrow has its own skateboard team.
Coffee as Community
Salt Lake Roasting Co.
320 E. 400 South, SLC, 801-363-7572.
Owner John Bolton was Salt Lake’s coffee pioneer, advocating and offering carefully made cups when percolated Folgers was still acceptable, and he was personally buying from fair trade sources before anyone knew what that meant. In addition to roasting his own, Bolton hired a real pastry chef and created a light-filled, friendly place in the heart of town that was, is now and ever shall be the go-to for a leisurely paper-perusing morning cup, a lunch with office mates and a conversation in the evening.
Coffee as Necessity
902 S. 1100 East, SLC, 801-322-2077
You simply have to have it in the morning. Few Americans are ashamed to admit caffeine dependence. Fortunately, fast has evolved, from instant to drive-through. Café Expresso serves up some of the best, along with a smile, a muffin or some sort of morning pastry and a dog biscuit if pooch is along for the ride. As gracious as a drive-through gets and a boon for the oversleeper.
Coffee for your Klatsch
Silver Bean Coffee Co.
6556 S. 3000 East, SLC, 801-947-0848
2002 Olympic Silver Medalist Shannon Bahrke is the “silver” part of Silver Bean. With fellow powder and coffee enthusiast Matt Happe, Bahrke sources, roasts and blends beans to create her idea of a perfect cup. Part of the coffee proceeds goes to support different causes: Olympic athletes, Best Friends Animal Society. And all Silver Bean coffees support your own personal coffee klatsch, because this is a mail-order business and your favorite blend will be delivered right to your door according to your customized schedule.
Coffee as Politics
52 Federal Ave., Logan, 435-753-4777
Coffee is a commodity, its price fluctuating internationally according to supply and demand, and its supply subject to weather and war. Because of this, and because coffee is grown in so many third world countries, the coffee business has become one of the most politicized food businesses in a time when the politics of food are more publicized than ever. Caffe Ibis’ mission is ambitious: to be “unbeatable on quality and freshness while supporting social justice and environmental stewardship.” To put it in Starbucks terms, a grande order. Caffe Ibis coffee is triple certified, organic, fair trade, Smithsonian Shade Grown and bird-friendly. Ibis also sells Café Femenino to support female coffee farmers in Peru. Find Caffe Ibis coffee in the original Logan shop and at local stores and restaurants.