Sometime in November, tentatively, the New Life Church neighborhood will get its second new fancy-schmancy coffee destination (Cafe Velo being the first) in the form of Mission Coffee Roasters (11641 Ridgeline Drive, #170, missioncoffeeroasters.com).
But Mission itself isn't new; it's a spinoff of recent Springs transplant and owner Brett Bixler's Baltimore, Md., High Ground Coffee Roasters. High Ground-roasted products are sold in select East Coast Whole Foods and Wegmans stores, as well as to numerous churches (for their own kiosks).
Bixler, who got his start in 1991 working for California's Diedrich Coffee empire, envisions similar distribution partnerships here, as well as collaboration to aid local nonprofits. For example, look for an UpaDowna blend soon at locations such as Mountain Equipment Recyclers. Mission will also start a popular "artists blend" series, in which local artists are invited to design labels to promote their work; Bixler says more than 50 have participated at High Ground (in which he'll soon sell his 51 percent ownership stake).
As for the space, he describes it as a café first, as well as a roasting house with co-working space, and a community conference room available for rent on an upstairs level. Mission will prepare some of its own sandwiches and baked goods in-house, but likely work with local purveyors on pastries, too.
Regarding the beans: Bixler believes he'll be the only person in the state roasting on a specially designed Diedrich drum roaster, which yields "coffee so clean, sweet, mellow and good, it'll blow your mind." He's looking into a custom-built, manual-lever-pull espresso unit à la the '50s, which supposedly creates "a quality in the cup that's not even coming through with the machines."
Lastly, he'll offer "hands-on classes" on coffee history, brewing, roasting and green coffee sourcing. Mission is licensed with TransFair USA and the Rainforest Alliance, and also has contacts "who are doing direct on-the-ground development work at origin ... directly helping farmers in the process."
Malt and mash
• The second Monument Beer Week (pikespeakbrewing.com/mbw-3), organized by Pikes Peak Brewing Co. brewer Chris Wright, runs Saturday, Oct. 20, through Saturday, Oct. 27, with nightly events that include area beer dinners, a Women's Beer Night, an Oktoberfest, a Front Range Craft Beer Mini-fest and more. See the website for details.
In related news: Pikes Peak Brewing Co., which only opened in May 2011, is already expanding. Founder Chris Wright says he's doubling the brewery's size, adding space to the tasting room and also doubling his fermentation capacity. He's also adding 30 oak barrels for special-release projects.
• Visit our IndyBlog for more food and drink news, from a photo tour of the newly opened 2South Food & Wine Bar (2southwinebar.com) to the story of Bierwerks' (bierwerks.com) Manitou Spring Water Pale Ale and details on upcoming wine and beer dinners.