Coffee Bureau and Lock Stock Coffee have revived Edmonton’s coffee district

There’s a buzz downtown and it’s not just because of all the construction taking place. It feels like Edmonton’s coffee district is back now that two new independent coffee shops have opened! Coffee Bureau and Lock Stock Coffee are now open on opposite sides of Jasper Avenue just west of 105 Street. I checked out both locations this week.

Coffee Bureau

Coffee Bureau is located on the southwest corner of Jasper Avenue and 105 Street in the Dental Building. It’s a small cafe with minimal seating and big windows.

Coffee Bureau

They serve ACE Coffee (Twitter, Instagram), a new local roaster from the folks behind LEVA Cafe. You’ll find a small selection of pastries too, like carrot-pineapple muffins and butter tarts.

Coffee Bureau

Couple Peter and Criss are the duo behind Coffee Bureau. Peter was formerly a barista at LEVA Cafe.

Coffee Bureau’s hours are subject to change, but currently they’re planning to be open from 7 AM until 5:30 PM during the week, and 9 AM until 3:30 PM on Saturday. Follow Coffee Bureau on Instagram and on Twitter.

Lock Stock Coffee

Almost directly across the street from Coffee Bureau is where you’ll find Lock Stock, nestled in-between Bower and Red Star Pub (which it is technically a part of). There’s a separate door though; it’s the dark one under the stairs to the right.

Lock Stock Coffee

Lock Stock serves Danesi coffee, which is an Italian roast that began in Rome in 1905. They also have pastries, baked in-house by Jesse who doubles as the barista (I hear the carrot cake is delicious).

Lock Stock Coffee

Red Star’s Sal Di Maio is the man behind Lock Stock. He told me they soft-launched a couple weeks ago and wanted to build up quietly. Now they’ve decided on the name and will be making themselves more known (they just started tweeting today).

Lock Stock will be open from 8 AM until 3 PM during the week, with Red Star opening at 4 PM. Follow Lock Stock Coffee on Twitter.

Edmonton’s Coffee District

It was just last fall that Burrow opened in Central LRT Station, and Transcend opened in the Mercer Warehouse on 104 Street, so it has been a great few months for Edmontonians looking for a caffeine fix downtown. I used to call the area around 104 Street the coffee district back when we had Roast and Transcend, but when they closed I figured it was no longer an appropriate title. Fast forward to today, and I think we can safely say the coffee district is back!

Here are the cafes you’ll find in the few blocks surrounding 104 Street:

  • Credo Coffee on 104 Street – the heart of the district, in my opinion
  • Transcend Mercer at 104 Street & 104 Avenue
  • Second Cup on Jasper Avenue between 103 Street and 104 Street
  • Remedy Cafe on Jasper Avenue at 103 Street
  • Coffee Bureau on Jasper Avenue at 105 Street
  • Lock Stock Coffee on Jasper Avenue between 105 and 106 Street

Also on 104 Street you’ll find Cavern and Dauphine, a cheese shop and bakery, which both serve a great cup of coffee.

Venture just a tiny bit further and you’ll find even more cafes. I suppose you could consider all of downtown the coffee district, from 101 Street to 109 Street, as Sharon does.

On the east side you’ll find Starbucks at the Empire Building, HSBC Bank Place, and City Centre on 101 Street, and of course there’s Second Cup, Good Earth, and two Tim Horton’s at City Centre too. Underground you’ll find Burrow and another Second Cup at Telus Plaza. There’s another Good Earth in Scotia Place. On 102 Street inside Commerce Place you’ll find Tim Horton’s, Starbucks, and McDonald’s (which has a separate McCafe counter).

On the west side, you’ll find Tim Horton’s and Starbucks on 107 Street, Good Earth on 108 Street, Second Cup on Jasper Avenue just west of 108 Street, and of course District on 109 Street.

And who knows what’ll come to the Edmonton Arena District in 2016! Good Earth has already listed a location opportunity for that area.

Lock Stock Coffee

A couple of other coffee-related items worth mentioning:

And with that, I’m off to drink another coffee!

Go underground for Edmonton’s newest coffee shops

It was a little disappointing to miss the opening of three new coffee shops last month, but on the other hand, it was nice to have new places to explore after we got back! In October, Transcend returned to downtown with a new location in the Mercer Warehouse, Credo added a second location on 124 Street, and after years in the making, Burrow opened in the Central LRT Station. I checked out all three locations last week.

Transcend Mercer

Transcend Mercer

Let’s start with Transcend Mercer. After the location on Jasper Avenue closed, I wasn’t sure if or when Transcend would be back downtown. It was pretty clear that if they did return, it would be at a smaller, more manageable location. While the new cafe in the basement of the building is smaller, it’s bigger than I was expecting! I’m not sure why but I envisioned something with either limited or no seating, but there’s actually lots of room to hang out at Transcend Mercer.

Transcend Mercer

I went for my usual – a vanilla latte – and looked around the cafe. There’s only one window, but the space is surprisingly bright, and I love the wood beams and ceiling. I understand they will be adding artwork around the room, so that’ll add even more color and visual interest. Speaking of color, the green counter, black wall, and brown accents definitely give you a “coffee” feeling!

I’m sure the new cafe will be frequented by everyone in the building, and it’s great to have another coffee shop on 104 Street. I’m also happy to once again be able to buy Transcend beans throughout the week! For more on Transcend Mercer, check out Cindy’s review here!

Credo Coffee on 124 Street

Credo Coffee on 124 Street

As you may know, Credo Coffee on 104 Street is my usual spot. It’s extremely close to home, has great coffee, and has wonderful service. The only downside is that because Credo is so popular, it can sometimes be difficult to find a seat. The new location on 124 Street is quite a bit bigger though, so hopefully that won’t be such an issue there!

Credo Coffee on 124 Street

The new cafe is located at 10350 124 Street in the new Limelight building (which is just down the block from Remedy Cafe). It can be a little difficult to see, given that there are no signs on the building except for a vinyl banner where Credo is located. They are the first tenant in the building, so I hope better signage is coming.

Credo Coffee on 124 Street

Inside is open and roomy, with lots of seating and also lots of bar space. Though Credo’s space is mostly below street level, there are lots of windows which means lots of natural light. Oddly there are a lot of power outlets up high (I guess for Christmas lights?) so you might need a long cord if you’re going to plug in a laptop (maybe they can add some outlets lower to the floor).

My favorite vanilla latte was as delicious as ever, and it didn’t take long to feel right at home. I know I won’t make it to this location as often as 104 Street, but it’s great to see another fantastic addition to 124 Street.

Burrow Central Station

Burrow Central Station

A coffee shop in an LRT station? Finally Edmonton’s cafe scene has gone underground! Burrow Central Station (part of the growing Elm Cafe family) is the perfect addition to our growing and increasingly popular transit system, and I hope it’s a sign of things to come. Again my expectations were exceeded – I anticipated finding Burrow tucked away behind one of the walls, but instead found it centrally located in the concourse. You can’t miss it, and now that it is there, I simply can’t remember what it looked like before. Burrow looks like it belongs, like it should have always been there.

Burrow Central Station

Burrow uses Four Barrel Coffee from San Francisco, which I had not tried before. I decided to stick with the usual on my first visit (ok, ok, and also my second and third visits) and ordered a vanilla latte. I was pleasantly surprised to see they make it with real vanilla bean instead of syrup! I will have to go try a simple brewed coffee one of these days. They have a rotating lunch menu with a grilled cheese sandwich too, also on my list to try.

There is no seating in the LRT concourse, but for grab and go it’s hard to beat Burrow. My office is right above in the Empire Building, so I foresee many, many visits in my future! Again, check out Cindy’s review here.

Have you been to these three new cafes? What did you think? If not, raise a paper cup as Omar says, and go check them out!