Restaurant Spotlight - coffeesmiths
Article by Jane Claspy Nesmith
Photography by Justin Fox
With its comfortable decor, free wi-fi, and--of course--great coffee and food—Coffeesmiths has become a perfect place to relax, get your favorite drink, or even have a meeting. And that’s the way owners Julie Lammers and Scot Brown want it.
“We want to be approachable,” says Lammers. “We want someone who’s never been in a coffeehouse to come in and feel at home. And we want coffee lovers to know they can come in and make a special order--we can make it for them.”
There are two full cafes--one at Boyson and C Avenue and another at Edgewood and Williams Boulevard--and a drive-up kiosk near Lindale so it’s likely there’s a Coffeesmiths near your neighborhood.
We stopped in at the newer cafe on Edgewood Road for a late lunch one day, and enjoyed freshly-prepared food and awesome cold drinks.
My mother always said that drinking hot coffee cooled her down, but on a warm summer day, I wasn’t going for it. Luckily, Coffeesmiths has lots of iced coffee drinks that are popular year-round. We tried the caramel macchiato and it hit the spot--sweet and refreshing with layers of caramel, milk, and fresh-brewed espresso, it was a great afternoon pick-me-up.
Coffeesmiths is rightfully proud of its coffee. Roasted to order each week by a small roasting company, it is always fresh. “We offer a light roast and a dark roast blend all year round,” says Lammers. “You’ll be able to get your favorite any time, at any of our stores. We pride ourselves in offering a very consistent flavor.” Coffeesmiths also offers decaf and a single origin coffee every month.
Lots of customers come just for the coffee. “Every morning they line up in the store and at our drive-through window,” says Lammers. Whether you want an espresso, latte, mocha, cafe au lait, or a simple brewed coffee, Coffeesmiths has it. There’s hot and iced tea, too.
Some of those customers get a pastry to go with their coffee, and so did we. “All our pastries except the cakes are baked in-house,” says Lammers. This means that the kitchen gets busy around 4:30 a.m. to be ready for a 6 a.m. opening. But it’s worth it. We tried chocolate chip and peach muffins--tender and sweet with crackly tops. The cranberry scone was flaky and rich, and the cinnamon roll was huge. Regulars sometimes call ahead to make sure their favorite pastry is available.
If you want a freshly-prepared lunch, Coffeesmiths has that, too. We tried the popular chicken salad sandwich--flavorful chicken salad spread on a tender croissant. We loved the signature cranberry pecan salad, made with spinach and topped with feta cheese. Coffeesmiths also has a variety of wraps and paninis and a soup of the day every day.
For those who have a lighter appetite--or who are looking for something to munch on while working on their laptop--Coffeesmiths offers an excellent selection of snacks: veggies with dip, a fruit bowl, yogurt, and cereal bowls would all make nice afternoon pick-me-ups or side dishes for a lunch. Gelato made in-house, refreshing smoothies (no sugar or preservatives added), and Coffeesmiths cookie dough are a few more sweet treats for the end of a meal or an afternoon snack.
Always a great place for small gatherings, the Coffeesmiths on Edgewood is ready to offer space for larger groups as well. “We had so many requests for meeting space at our other location that it was a priority here,” explains Lammers. Groups can use--or even reserve--the cafe’s conference room for meetings or celebrations. “We’ve had a lot of bridal showers and baby showers here,” says Lammers.
There’s no requirement to purchase food or drink in order to use the room, but when there’s such excellent food and coffee just a few steps away, why not? Coffeesmiths also has a catering menu with specialty items like fruit kabobs to make any gathering more delicious.
To keep up with specials and score on contest giveaways, check out Coffeesmiths’ Facebook page. “I want to thank all of our loyal customers and employees--current and former--who have supported us through the years,” Lammers says. “Scot and I are truly blessed.”