Brown Sugar Bake Shop

Last month we were in the town of Okotoks and got to check out a gem of a bake shop. The Brown Sugar Bake Shop resides in a strip mall off of Milligan Drive. Inside sprawls a spacious dining area in front of their giant counter full of muffins, cupcakes, ice cream and other baked goods and of course they do coffee. When I entered, I was impressed with the simple decor.  It was a cute little bake shop!

I have seen many attempts to bring good coffee to bakeries and sadly, only a few places have succeeded. Whether it’s an affinity for over-roasted beans, cutting corners, automated machines, a disregard for training/quality, or any combination of all the above, I’ve seen it all at the Brown Sugar Bake Shop. Thus, when a shop does things right, they deserve their praise due. What I would say is stick to the baked goods and quit doing the coffee thing because you are not good at it. I was extremely disappointed with the lack of flavour in my drink.

Stepping up to order, I settled on ordering a Caramel Macchiato, we also ordered an Americano, a London Fog and a Vanilla Latte. All drinks except for the Americano lacked flavour.

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Now lets talk about the baked goods, they not only looked great but tasted great. My daughter had a cheese bun that was to die for. So much so we bought a bag of 6 of the for $13.50. My wife and me both had muffins which were both excellent as well. We did discuss going back and checking out their other food items on their menu as the food coming out looked delicious It is a bit pricier but worth the extra.

The staff are friendly and very helpful.

Whether you’re in town for the week or a day visit, definitely check out Brown Sugar Bake Shop for the baked goods. 

Village Flatbread Co.

On Saturday we decided to go and try out a new pizza place called Village Flatbread Co. in the south. We decided to head over because they have some vegan options and my son’s girlfriend is vegan and we wanted her to try out this place.

When we arrived it was very little inside, just enough space for one table and then outside there was three tables. We took over a big table since there was five of us. A very nice gentleman came out to talk us through the menu, later we found out he is the owner.

After reviewing the menu, you head inside to order and we decided on the Brentwood which is a starter of Brushetta and a Montgomery which is a starter salad. Both were absolutely amazing.

As for the main dishes we ordered the Bridgeland, the Red Stone, the Shaganappi, and the Harvest Hills. All the pizza’s were amazing! My son and his girlfriend ordered the vegan versions of their pizza’s and his girlfriend said that this pizza was way better than Virtuous Pie in Vancouver who specializes in vegan pizzas.

This little location is all natural, local, and organic and I could see them doing really well with where they are located on 17th ave just off of Crowchild Trail.

Velo Cafe

Recently we decided to head to the Southwest and visit a little cafe who caters to mostly bicyclists. It is located on the corner of 17th ave and the on ramp to South Crowchild Trail. It is located in a modern apartment building called Market 17, also located in this building is a steampunk inspired barber.

When we first entered this location, we were very unsure because it was a grocery store. In the back of the shop there was a little counter where they had all their baked good and some products for sale.

Their beverage menu was very small and it seemed like when we asked about a couple of the menu options they didn’t even have them, yet they were still on the menu. When we decided  what we were going to have, we ordered an Americano, a Matcha Latte, and two Vanilla Lattes. As for the baked items we had a raisin danish, a pear muffin, and an oat cookie.

Everything was very good, although my wife has had a better Matcha Latte at other coffee shops we have visited.

As for seating, we decided since it was such a nice day out we sat on the “patio” that only had a couple tables with little seating. I believe inside they had more seating just beside the grocery store location.

You can clearly tell that this is a grab-and-go coffee shop, so if you are on the go, stop and grab a coffee and a delicious pastry item.

Lucid Kustoms Koffee House

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Today we are out in Bragg Creek at a very cool coffee shop called Lucid Kustoms Koffee House.  It is located in a strip mall with a bunch of different shops. From the outside it looks like a log building, and when we looked at images of this cafe there were a bunch of motorcycles out front. This location has been open for two years, there is a Lucid Kustoms in Calgary, but no coffee shop included.

We entered in through the motorcycle side so there was a bunch of motorcycles and apparel. When we entered into the cafe side there were a bunch of comfy seats around and a couple people inside, but since it was a nice day we sat outside as well as the others.

We ordered an Americano, two London Fogs, and a Caramel Macchiato. All of the beverages were very delicious. The only sad thing is that they only had one size of a mug and all the other drinks have to come in to-go cups.

For a small snack we got a rice crispy square with Oreo chunks, amazing, and a hummingbird loaf, delicious. It was a loaf with banana, coconut, pineapple, and walnuts.

The decor inside was very biker inspired which is absolutely amazing, there was a giant drawing of a motorcycle on one whole wall. On the other wall there was pictures of motorcycles that I could assume that they made.

It was so peaceful out here and after today’s amazing visit, we will return.

Deja Brew

I do apologize for the delay in getting this blog out, but better late than never.

While the pickings in smaller towns are often slimmer, I do love finding good coffeehouses outside the city limits of Calgary. Sure, most cafes of merit exist in the urban jungles of the world, but there’s something extra special when I come across a reputable coffee bar in a small town.

One such rare gem that exists in the heart of Cochrane, Alberta, located on 1 Street. As you drive up the cafe it has been blessed with a huge patio for when we rarely get warm weather. As you head inside, the shop has a ton of seating amidst a calm, pleasant atmosphere of concrete floors, numerous windows and an european type decor. Lots of pictures of Rome, Paris, and Germany. It was quite interesting that there was a toaster over in one corner of the cafe for you to toast your own bread if you so decided.

The coffee comes from Canmore’s coffee roaster Rave Coffee, a welcome sight in any cafe. For my coffee that beautiful sunny morning, I went with a Pistachio espresso and I also had a Caramel and sea salt latte. My wife had an Iced Matcha. The Pistachio espresso was an espresso with some steamed milk topped with pistachios. This was an interesting drink especially when you got down to the bottom and there was chucks of the pistachios. My caramel and sea salt latte was very good. If you like sweet, this is the beverage for you. My wife’s Iced Matcha was excellent and would strongly recommend this drink to anyone.

We ordered a bacon, egg and cheese breakfast sandwich. The food we ordered I would say was just ok. It wasn’t anything special. The baked goods in the cabinet were all home made and looked great though.

Let’s talk customer service, it was outstanding. The two girls working there were terrific, very friendly, extremely helpful and patient as this was our first time here. There was a lot to digest as they have a very large menu.

All around, I greatly appreciated the Deja Brew experience in Cochrane; the shop had a cool vibe and the coffee proved tasty. Whether you live nearby or you’re passing through, definitely stop at Deja Brew.

Little Henry

Out on an adventure to find a new coffee shop to try on a lovely Sunday in Calgary. We decided to head downtown to a little shop in Victoria Park called Little Henry. It is the little brother of Ten Foot Henry.

They are located in a former pop-up shop just down on 1st Street SW. There are so many unique locations down in Victoria Park including Vine Arts, Yellow Door, and Boxcar Cafe.

When you walk in it is literally little. You have three tables in the window and a communal table that sits eight. We got there quite early so their display case was still empty, but the barista said most items don’t come out until 11am. What we did see looked amazing, including a very appetizing coconut cake.

After reviewing the menu we decided upon a Naked Fog, which is a common London Fog with Naked Tea). We also ordered two Henry Proofs, which are a version of Bulletproof, they include coffee, organic butter and sometimes an egg yolk. Shortly after we ordered my son got a ‘Golden Milk’ which was almond milk, ginger, tumeric, cinnamon, black pepper, coconut oil, and honey. All the beverages were amazing.

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As for the decor it was very contemporary and clean. On one whole side of the shop was full of bookshelves with cooking books and a giant Little Henry poster. Behind the bar there is a divider  wall with frosted glass to hide the restaurant.

On the counter by their coffee machine they had a frame saying that if you bring back five mason jars any size you can get a free coffee, tea, or warm elixir. Which is nice to be a part of the reuse and recycle cause.

I hope everyone can make it down to try this unique coffee shop down in Victoria Park.

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Sorry this is a little delayed, but it’s still me, I’m still in France for a couple more days. I managed to hit one more coffee shop before my adventure is over. This little coffee shop was recommended to me by someone back in Calgary, so I knew I had to go and check it out. The day that I went it was nice and overcast so it wasn’t too hot, but I still had to get a coffee.

We first walked by this location a couple times because there is not much outside telling us where this coffee shop was located. When we finally realized there was a little sign beside the door with their name placard.

Once entering this small location, we soon realized that there was only a couple tables. It was not very big at all, and the bar took up most of the footage. When we got up to order, luckily the guy spoke english which we were very happy about. I got an iced latte and a egg sandwich, which I would soon learn that it was actually an egg salad sandwich, for breakfast.

When we were almost done our breakfast I started looking at the different kinds of coffee beans that they had. They offered six different kinds and after smelling each of them, I decided upon buying three different kinds.

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It was nice as we were sitting there enjoying our breakfast, we noticed that a lot of people coming in spoke english. It was nice, it kind of felt like home in a way.