The state of Arizona has very little in regards to quality specialty coffee, and even the direction and incentive to strive for those standards. We saw Cartel Coffee Lab as one of the only voices in the state that echoed those standards that we, as the coffee shop Avenue Coffee, grew into over the past year.
I see statements like this, and while true to a large degree (Arizona is a desert), it comes off sounding like nobody in AZ has passion. I’m sure that wasn’t the intention. There are a growing number of people starting and running coffee shops in Arizona that do have passion for the bean, and keep high standards. I could rattle off a list of shops right now that I think deserve praise.
So, anyways kudos to the crew at Cartel! Oh, and the Tempe location has expanded hours! Beginning August 10, 2010 hours are 7 am – 11 pm, daily. Which sounds fantastic because often after work I’ll want to go somewhere, but it’s too late in the day.
Update: Brian from Cartel Coffee Lab wrote in to let me know about the following:
“[Avenue Coffee] will continue with business as usual until a switch over date, even when the sign reads “Cartel” they will be accepting “Avenue” punch cards. They will have a program where instead of 10 punches = free drink, that the customer can redeem the punch card early for a free drink. They will be phasing out the large batch brewing and moving over to cup-by-cup brew via the Hario V60 with NO free refills, but again, this will all be done in due time.
There is going to be an anniversary party plus unveiling of Avenue as Cartel Coffee Lab – Campbell Avenue on August 9, 2010 (8/9/10).”