Who Has the Best Breakfast Burritos Boulder?

The Best Breakfast Burritos Boulder

The breakfast burrito is profound.  Packed with flavor and nutrition in a convenient commuter friendly tortilla wrap, the breakfast burrito is essential to a busy life.

For years, our Founder has been obsessed with finding, and making, the ideal The Best Breakfast Burritos Boulderbreakfast burrito.  After spending many years in Santa Barbara, California and experiencing, mapping and rating its breakfast burrito scene, he has relocated to Boulder County, Colorado.  His obsession continues and the search for the best breakfast burritos Boulder begins.

What Makes a Perfect Breakfast Burrito?

What make an average breakfast burrito (BB) the best?  Well, the perfect BB comes from a variety of characteristics. These include:

  • Flavor – Monotone is not best.  The best has a flavor which keeps the customers taste buds interested.  Not only the combination of flavors, but also the how those flavors distribute throughout the burrito.   From a well blended, flavorful burrito to a chunky un-blended burrito with a new experience in every bite, flavor can come many ways.
  • Construction – Blending or chunky?  Tight or loose? Dry or wet?  The construction can greatly influence the eating experience.  A loose, wet, sloppy burrito is likely to fall apart midway and even leak out the bottom. A dry, well blended burrito can be too dry and hard. Let’s find the middle ground.
  • Slop – Let’s call it the amount of sauce.  Here in Colorado, the Chili Verde sauce reigns supreme.  Coloradans love their sauce.  Unfortunately, this sauce can make it too wet and too salty.  A good chili verde sauce is mouth watering, but should be added to a burrito to enhance it, not simply be there because it is Colorado.
  • Ingredient Ratio – Too much egg, too much onion, too much sauce.  Getting the proportions right is vital to a well structured, enjoyable burrito.  Whether the foundation is beans, eggs, or potatoes, we are looking for a complimentary amount of sauce, add-ins, and flavor.  No one really likes a potato burrito??

And so begins the journey to find the best breakfast burritos boulder.  From Boulder to Louisville to Lafayette and Longmont, the perfect breakfast burrito is out there.   We will find it.

 

 

 

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Live Music of Louisville and Lafayette, Colorado

coffee shop live music of Louisville and LafayetteLive music season is here!  With the warmer temps, sun, and snow birds returning, patios are of much more use in Colorado.  These warm summer evenings are great for free music at your local coffee shop or brewery. Here is a list of when and where so you can plan.  This list covers Louisville, CO and Lafayette, CO:

We hope this list helps you find some great local music!  From open mics to bluegrass jams, there are some tunes for everyone.  Yes, we haven’t covered Boulder, but we had to start somewhere. Stay tuned as we expand our list.  It is so great to see so much live music available in Louisville and Lafayette.  Happy music night!!!

 

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Grab & Go: Logan’s Espresso Cafe of North Boulder

Logans Espresso Cafe Simple Storefront

Introducing our first Grab & Go review.  These are short reviews to give you a quick impression of the coffee shop without having to read our full reviews. The grab & go review will be followed up with a full review in coming weeks.

Logan’s Espresso Cafe

Logans Espresso Cafe Simple StorefrontLogan’s Cafe is a place you might have walked by many times and never realized it was there.  In fact, it is located opposite Lucky’s Bakehouse and Creamery in North Boulder.

This coffeehouse has been around for 15-years and is locally owned which represents a dying breed of small businesses.   It proves you can do well by embracing your community, offering humble products, and sharing your passion.

Quick Feature Review:

Atmosphere and Seating:  A bit cramped on this inside, but clean and accessible.  Be ready to be intimate if it is busy.  From bar seating to tables (inside and outside), there is nothing wrong here.   We also LOVE the gorgeous local art on the walls by Girl Painters West. However, the artists rotate, so grab your favorite Girl Painters West painting soon.

Coffee/Espresso:  This is based on a single visit.  We both ordered drip coffees, so we can’t comment on the espresso.  While we asked for a light and dark roast, Logan explained they had one roast and it was right in the middle.  Fair enough.  The coffee was good.  Nice earthy tones, a solid brew, and decent flavors.  While it didn’t blow us away, we couldn’t come up with any faults.  We look forward to trying the espresso drinks on our next visit.

Food, Snacks, & Pastries: A decent selection of food items adorned a display cabinet. From baked goods like bagels and croissants to packages breakfast burritos, there is a good selection to let you get something different every time you visit.

We sampled the ham and cheese croissant and a raisin cinnamon bagel with cream cheese.  Both were good and the cream cheese was nicely chilled.  The ham and cheese croissant was flaky, buttery and had good flavor.  We just wish there was more ham and cheese. We were also handed a real knife for the cream cheese, a plus.

Is it a Friendly Bean?

Based on our initial impressions, there is a great foundation at Logan’s Espresso Cafe to be a community coffee shop that we love.  But, we can’t declare it a Friendly Bean based on one visit and without tasting the espresso drinks.  We will leave it with this:  the signs are good and we hope the final stretch to Friendly Bean is easy.

Logna's Espresso Cafe North BoulderLocation, Hours, Etc.

Logan’s Espresso Cafe
3980 Broadway St, #101
Boulder, CO 80304
P: 303.443.3600

Hours: Mon to Sat 6am -6pm & Sun 6:30am to 6pm

Visit their website here

 

 

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Hanging Out With Paul’s Coffee & Tea

Bacon Egg Burrito at Pauls Coffee

We recently asked the locals here in Louisville what the best place to get a coffee and burrito was.  The answer was Paul’s Coffee & Tea on W Cherry Street near S McCaslin Blvd.   It is a rather unassuming storefront.  Located on a corner of the strip mall, the endless windows inside provide a lot of fantastic natural lighting. They also roast their own beans, operating as a coffee shop and roaster.  Keep reading and find out whether or not Paul’s Coffee makes the Friendly Beans list.

Paul’s Coffee and Tea

Paul's Coffee & Tea ExteriorThe first impression when you walk in to a coffee shop for the first time, doesn’t really represent the true vibe.  First impressions matter but are not always accurate.

Walking into Paul’s for the first time felt chaotic.  The counter area is cluttered, the cashier and drink area are reversed and the wall behind the counter is super busy with guitar decoration and chalkboard menus.  The diversity of seating types is also a bit disjointed to the eye. While it feels a bit chaotic, there is order to this madness. Read on as we make sense of this unique coffee shop and roaster.

Seating & Atmosphere

Mismatch and cluttered are two words which keep coming to mind. The seating ranges from comfy leather armchairs to mix and match dining chairs and tables to bench seating.    Whether you want to chill out and read a book, lounge with friends over coffee, or sit down and blast out that report for work, come in and get comfy in a variety of places. The large tables are great for larger groups of 5 or 6 to sit at a common table and work through a project together.

The atmosphere is upbeat.  We are still trying to find words to describe the overall theme.  The checkered floor contrasting with the aged wood paneling and the retail of the local artist wall are reminiscent of  a diner, a historic barn and a cheap art gallery.   Toss in the mix and match chairs and we can’t put our finger on it.  That’s the character and it is different in good and bad ways.

Inside Pauls Coffee & TeaIs the overall atmosphere inviting?  Yes.  Once you get over the mix and match clutter feel, you settle in to a great community place. Grab a table with a friend or a couch and spend the afternoon.

We love the art gallery wall featuring local art by local artists.  The works are for sale, which is another positive.

We also love the community bulletin board in the back by the bathrooms.  While we prefer to see community boards in a more prominent spot. The fact they have one is great.

However, be forewarned, outlets are not abundant and the bench is high for the tables, so take a chair if you want to work.

Friendly Beans Score:  B. The Beans are Comfortable

Food, Treats, and Goodies

A nicely stocked display case and pastry rounds offer quite a diverse selection of goodies.  From croissants to macaroons and cookies, there is something yummy to snack on.  If you prefer something a bit more robust, there are plenty of burritos to choose from.

Bacon Egg Burrito at Paul's Coffee & TeaWe sampled both the Spicy Sausage and Bacon Egg Burritos.  Both were “panini’d” (the act of finishing an item on a panini maker, thus putting lines onto the item) and were offered with salsa.  Of the two, the Bacon Egg burrito got the vote for best tasting.  We look forward to trying their additional items on future visits.

Friendly Beans Food Score: A. Beans are Dancing in the Streets

Coffee & Espresso

We asked for a dark roast drip and were pointed to the “holiday blend” roast.  There were actually a few selections for drip, but the holiday blend proved sufficient.   Definitely a nice upgrade over gas station coffee but not as rich as some of us prefer.   The selections rotate so don’t expect the same coffee everyday.  We did sample a breakfast blend and decaf sumatra on subsequent visits and couldn’t tell too much of a difference in flavor. In fact, the breakfast blend was quite weak.

The espresso drinks were fantastic. The latte and mocha we sampled had a bright espresso undertone complimented with the milk (and mocha).  The drinks also tasted consistent over three visits with different baristas at the healm.  This is a huge plus. We recommend sticking to the espresso drinks.

Friendly Bean Score:  B. The beans prefer pressure, not the drip

Coffee Gear

The coffee gear offered is sufficient for any coffee to pick a nice fresh press or simply some coffee filters for home use.  There are a few items on the counter and the rest are located to the left of the counter near the window.

Being a custom roaster, you can also buy fresh beans. Yep, that’s right, you can buy beans from a local business and avoid the big brands at the grocery store.  Paul’s Coffee & Tea is a great place to stop.

Friendly Bean Coffee Gear Score:  B. Good selection with custom Beans.

Community

During each of our visits, there was an incredible amount of activity.  Everything from students coming and going to study, to professionals working over a coffee, and large groups at a table discussing a project.  The liveliness is wonderful to see.

We didn’t see any advertised events being hosted by Paul’s Coffee & Tea.  This isn’t necessarily a bad thing as not all coffee shops are open late or offer the ability to host.

Overall, the community feel is pretty awesome and the liveliness inspiring.

Friendly Beans Community Score: A. The Beans are lively and happy!

 

Location, Hours, Etc

Located near the intersection of Route 36 and McCaslin Blvd in Louisville, the location is very convenient, especially for meeting people.  The parking lot is tad small directly in front, but there is plenty of parking a few steps away as the parking expands.

Website: Visit their homepage

Location:
956 W Cherry
Louisville, CO 80027

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 6am – 6pm
Saturday – Sunday: 7am – 6pm

Is it a Friendly Bean?

Is Paul’s Coffee & Tea a Friendly Bean??  Once you get over the mix and match atmosphere and feel the inspiring community vibe and energy of the patrons, Paul’s Coffee is definitely a member of the Friendly Beans family.   The next time you are in Louisville, please stop in and grab a latte or mocha and feel the energy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Friendly Beans – Coffee Houses of Snohomish County

Friendly Beans – Coffee Houses of Snohomish County Colorado

Beans are friendly when they make you feel great, bring out the kid in you and connect you with friends, peers and to the larger community. Coffee shops are a dime a dozen in many areas of the US, but not all offer friendly beans. Gone are the days of the stove-top percolator and disgusting freeze dried instant coffee. Coffee consumers in the 21st century expect freshly roasted and brewed coffee and espresso served with passion that would actually make grandma jealous. Some get coffee right, others get the atmosphere right, and few offer the truly great friendly beans experience.

Great Coffee Meets Great Food

Coffee is an ancient commodity dating back to the 15th century in Ethiopia. By roasting and brewing seeds from the berries of the Coffea plant, one extracts a rich, acidic, caffeinated beverage traditionally served hot. Now grown throughout the world and brewed any number of ways, coffee is as essential to modern daily life as electricity. It wasn’t until Starbucks came along that coffee really truly exploded into a consumer money maker. Mixed with milk, espresso is the basis for many favorites including the latte, the mocha, and (dare I say it), the pumpkin spice latte. In fact, espresso based milk drinks are more popular than brewed “drip” coffee, making most “coffee” vendors such as Starbucks, Peet’s and Coffee Bean milk vendors more than coffee vendors.

Whether you are a coffee geek with a home roaster, burr grinder, and lever espresso machine or just a social drinker looking to share gossip over a latte, the expectation is high for the quality of the drink. While coffee can come dark or light, the right consistent brew is most important. Coffee houses and vendors spend a lot of time getting consistency right. Starbucks has moved toward automatic espresso machines and detailed recipes for their drinks. Gone are the days of barista skill at Starbucks… or rather barista skill has moved into the world of the private coffee shop. The independent barista measures and hand tamps their portafilters and carefully mixes the drinks just like a skilled bartender. This blog will distinguish between the two, corporate coffee houses like Starbucks are really “vendors” which lack skill whereas independent coffee houses are true artisans. Either approach is capable of delivering the rich, caffeinated drinks we have come to expect.

With coffee, there must be a truly great treat to complement the coffee bitterness. While coffee vendors like Peet’s coffee have a standard menu with the occasional seasonal offering, the selection is usually the same when you visit locations across the country. The independent coffee houses are a little more interesting with home baked treats that vary greatly. Some coffee houses do not offer anything more than a few scones, cookies and croissants and yet others offer breakfast burritos and panini’s. Quality of the food matters as much as the coffee served alongside.

To earn the Friendly Beans seal of approval, both the coffee and food items must not only be enjoyable and priced right, but be memorable and worth driving many miles for.

A Welcoming Place to Hang Out

Friendly beans are best enjoyed in shops with nice comfy chairs, functional work tables, and a welcoming atmosphere. Whether a modern, eclectic vibe, or 1920’s antique store, having an atmosphere which feels welcoming and enables togetherness is essential to the friendly beans experience. A checklist of conveniences include free wifi, a combination of comfy couch/chair seating with tables tables to work from, convenient location, community event/ad board, and a welcoming, energetic vibe. Coffee houses can struggle to get the mix just right, so we will report back what we find.

Smiles Are the Best

Beans can angry as often as they are nice. Mood swings are not abnormal. But when it comes to the Friendly Beans experience, smiles are all which matter. While we have come to expect a friendly atmosphere at most coffee vendors, we have found service varying a lot at coffee houses. Sometimes it is just one employee having a bad day, other times, the service is just horrendous.

We are on the lookout for truly remarkable baristas, baristas that not only make an awesome, but tell a good joke and go above and beyond in terms of friendly service. We are looking for people passion as much as coffee and pastry passion. Without friendliness, beans are just beans.

Join Our Journey

This blog is focused on the Friendly Beans experience of Snohomish County of Washington Colorado state and Boulder County. Why Snohomish BoulderCounty? After living in southern California for 17 years, the author recently relocated to Everett, WA. After two years there, the horrible winters brought him to the happiest county in the US, Boulder County. With his love of coffee shops following him, he decided to share his exploration of coffee shops and created Friendly Beans. The purpose is not to declare a winner, but rather explore the good, the bad, and the ugly and everything in between which serves great coffee, great food in a welcoming environment.

Please join us on this journey. Please comment on our findings and share your experiences as we go. In the meantime, check out our growing list of Boulder County Coffee houses.

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