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Review of Firecreek

It was getting late in the year and so my family and I decided to make a last minute trip up to Flagstaff to play in some snow before it all melted. It had been raining for days, but the weather app on our phone said it would snow that day. Sadly, it did not. Instead, we got rain...lots of rain. Since we had to wait out the storm, I used that opportunity to check out a coffee shop I have been wanting to try for a while, Firecreek Coffee.

This coffee shop is just cross the train tracks and part of an "old town" type of city center. We got lucky with parking, but having gone to other places near by, I know it can be a bit of nightmare. The store does a good job of sticking out since it is painted green. That sounds weird, but it works well in Flagstaff.

 My first impression was good. The bar has cool reclaimed wood on it. The ceiling has fun tiles. The walls are painted bright with art highlighted. There was a lot of natural light which allowed them to use a lot of dark wood tones with color highlights. Another amazing thing was how insulated it was from the outside world. Those who know Flagstaff, know that the trains are loud. It was busy, but even when it quieted, I could just barely hear the trains pass.

Another thing I noticed is that this place was total hipster crowd. My noisy 2 year old daughter got a few looks over Apple lap top screens. Hipster scenes have their ups and downs. The people tend to be kind of snooty, but they come up with some cool ideas. For example. I loved that they had an old looking CD player with some bands I have never heard of set-up with headphones. You can check out the CD and purchase from the store. I thought that was a great way to support the local music scene.

Now, on to the coffee. They offered a "regular drip" that they served from an air-pot and two offerings for pour over. I picked their Costa Rica coffee. It is was roasted fairly light bug had a nice smooth body. The cup was complex. I had to read the description a couple of times to pin it down. It was described as subtle strawberry, citrus, caramel and molasses. The coffee was legit. They brewed it in a clever drip. And did a good job of making a show of it. I got my wife and daughter a hot chocolate that was also very good. It was light, but still rich. Very well done.

I saw one of the baristas drying dishes and took the opportunity to ask him some questions. He advised that they do some direct trade and also go in with other companies to get discounts on freight. Their roaster is in a different facility. One thing I found interesting was that he said the coffee shop was their smallest whole bean customer. That made total sense to me after I thought about it. They sell to a lot of local restaurants and the local Whole Foods.

The Baristas were nice, but not overly smiley. It's not hipster to smile. They knew their stuff when it came to coffee and the business, which was nice. I would have just liked some more warm fuzzies. The store was a little busy and the baristas were running around all crazy. I feel like the store could benefit greatly by hammering out their operations. It was a bit chaotic for not having a line any longer than 4 people.

They also served beer and wine and I really liked their set up. When I looked at the selection though, I noticed there were not a lot of local beers. I get it, because the brewery had a shop in the same complex. I just think it would have been nice to get some local selections in there too. Maybe some from surrounding areas, not just Flagstaff.

In the back, they had a stage where they held events. There were some more tables back there, which looked like most of the college study groups happened. It was much quieter in the back. They did good job utilizing the long narrow space and fitting multiple business aspects into it (coffee, beer/wine, concerts).

Overall, definitely get some coffee here. It is really good. It had a bit too much of a hipster feel and not enough smiles, but it was rainy day. I'll blame it on that.

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