Our latest trip to Spokane takes a coffee-centric turn as we check out a handful of coffee shops and bakeries.
First Avenue Coffee
A week after we visited First Avenue Coffee, the coffee shop changed ownership. But, seeing the original staff stayed on, it still feels right to give the spot a shout-out. The baristi here certainly hold their own.
My macchiato came dry—the shot showed no signs of a burnt after-flavor—sweetened with just a splash of milk. It’s a simple drink on paper, but getting the ratio right can often be challenging. Having tried other drinks here in the past has proven that the shop is more than serious about its coffee.
There are no guarantees the new ownership will keep the boat floating, but First Avenue will do just fine if the staff sticks around—and all indications suggest that’s the case. The space is also nice, with a large bar and a mezzanine suited for a quieter experience.
Made With Love Bakery
Once upon a time, bakeries would have a reputation for less-than-stellar espresso drinks. These days, things have changed, as proven by Made With Love. The spot might be renowned for its baked goods—their triple-berry pie is a local favorite—but their Americano is as good as any dedicated coffee bar.
The inside seating is scant, but the covered patio has plenty of space. Come for the baked goods and stay for the coffee—or vice versa. Made With Love comes recommended either way.
Rind and Wheat
Granted, Rind and Wheat is not a coffee shop, but with Ladder Coffee right next door, it needs to be included. The bakery delivers some of the best bread in town, complemented by their quasi-recently added cheese counter. All of the pastries are top-notch, too.
Atticus Coffee & Gifts (and Boo Radley’s)
Atticus has been around since who-kn0ws-when and has delivered quality espresso for as long as I can remember. At a time when Spokane’s coffee scene was anemic, Atticus was a safe harbor for anyone who wanted something better. The space is large and also houses a quirky little gift shop.
These days, there might be a greater selection of coffee in Spokane, but Atticus still chugs right along. It should be a stop worth considering for anyone doing a coffee crawl.
Even more peculiar is Atticus’s former sibling store, Boo Radley’s. Under new management, the shop is still the same oddball shop, featuring products ranging from Bigfoot paraphernalia to The Godfather tarot cards. No coffee, but grab a cup from Atticus and walk next door for an extended experience.
Much like Atticus, Thomas Hammer was one of Spokane’s early bright spots for coffee, and in my mind, that hasn’t changed. Their South Hill location is particularly worth the trek—it has a good selection of baked goods and well-made coffee drinks housed in a large, modern space. Granted, the place tends to be fairly crowded, but you can usually find a spot.
For Your Consideration: My Fresh Basket
I grade on a scale for grocery store coffee, and while not quite up there with the aforementioned spots, My Fresh Basket delivers a good cup for shopping. If you want to go all out, though, try their hot chocolate, which is rather splendid. (1030 W Summit Pkwy)