6 Local Baristas Share Their Favorite At-Home Coffee Recipes

Denver businesses are beginning to open their doors to the public as the safer-at-home order takes place. However, the community is still settling into this new phase. Things like sitting down in a crowded coffee shop and sipping on a perfectly made latte, are still not part of the new normal. However, some talented local baristas from the best coffee shops in Denver have shared some unique coffee recipes for you to try out at home. Whether you miss grabbing a quick coffee from your favorite café or you’re bored of your daily cup of joe, here are some recipes that’ll add something new to your normal coffee break.

As service industry workers struggle in these uncertain times, various online services are now offering additional help. This website allows people to tip a randomized staff member when they have a drink. We will also be including Venmo handles of the involved baristas below if anyone wants to tip them personally. 

Anders Lehto – Coffee Director at Hudson Hill

Hudson Hill Coffee

Photo Courtesy of Anders Lehto

Location: Hudson Hill is located on 619 E. 13th Ave., Denver. It is open Monday – Sunday 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Recipe: Coconut Cream Coffee with Rosemary Syrup
2 oz cold brew concentrate
2 oz sweetened almond milk
1.5 oz of coconut cream
3/4 oz rosemary syrup
Rosemary syrup:
16 oz water
16 oz sugar
40 grams of fresh rosemary
At Hudson, we make a simple syrup first, equal parts sugar and water. Bring water to a boil and whisk in the sugar. Once the sugar is fully dissolved you can take the mixture off the heat and add the rosemary. Let the rosemary steep in the syrup until it cools, usually a half hour to an hour depending on how much you make.
Add ingredients to a shaker and shake with ice to best incorporate everything. At home, you can also stir it fairly aggressively and pour over ice. Blending it can also be a fun way to enjoy.

Reason: I really enjoy this beverage because it always makes me feel like I’m on a tropical island with my feet in the sand. It’s incredibly refreshing and great to make for that afternoon boost and escape city life.

Venmo Handle: @Anders-Lehto

Ashley Amegin –  Barista at Blue Sparrow Coffee

Blue Sparrow Coffee

Photo Courtesy of Blue Sparrow Coffee

Location: Blue Sparrow Coffee is located on 3070 Blake St. #180., Denver. It is open Monday – Sunday 6:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Recipe: Café Au Lait

1 part hot French press coffee
2 parts warmed milk

Use your favorite bean (Denver shop gets you bonus points) and brew a cup in your French press.

Your grounds should be coarse like gravely sand. Place grounds in the French press. Add a little bit of boiled water to them. Give a little stir and allow to sit for 30 seconds. This is called a bloom. After 30 seconds pass, add the rest of your water. Let sit for 4 minutes. Push the plunger and pour your coffee.

Clean your French press. Add hot milk to the French press and then move your plunger up and down in a fast motion. Now you are frothing the milk. Who needs a steam wand? Find your favorite mug and pour in your coffee, followed by your frothed milk. And now you’re a pro.

Reason: I love the cafe au lait because you get the warmth of a drink made from your local shop without having to leave the home. Something a little more special than your normal drip. Maybe even add things like cinnamon for a fun twist.

Venmo Handle: @mainspring-tipfund

Marinna Williams- Barista at Logan House Coffee Co.

Cold Brew Con Chata

Photo Courtesy of Marinna Williams

Location: Logan House is located in Stanley Marketplace on 2501 Dallas St. #112, Aurora. It is open Monday – Sunday 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Recipe: Cold Brew con Chata
6 oz cold brew (bonus points for homemade cold brew)
6 oz almond or oat milk
1 tbsp cinnamon
1/4 cup raw or brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
You can use premade cold brew or make your own. For homemade, I like 1 ounce (weight) of medium-coarse ground coffee for every cup of water. Steeped for 18 hours at room temperature. I usually make about 4 cups per batch. 
Once your cold brew is ready, prepare your cinnamon vanilla simple syrup. Mix 1/4 cup sugar with 1/4 cup hot water. Add vanilla and cinnamon, whisk until sugar is dissolved and cinnamon is integrated. 
Fill a glass with ice. Grab another cup or pitcher that’s easy to pour out of. Add about 6 ounces cold brew, 6 ounces alternative milk, and 2 ounces simple syrup. Stir and pour mixture over ice. Feel free to adjust the amount of milk and simple syrup based on your taste preference! 

Reason: While this isn’t exactly traditional horchata made with rice and tiger nut milk, it’s a quick alternative with a similar sweet and creamy flavor. Having grown up in South Florida, where it’s always iced coffee season, it’s important to have a variety of recipes in your iced coffee rotation.

Venmo Handle: @Marinna-Williams

Hannah Ulbrich – Owner of Copper Door Coffee

Copper Door Coffee

Photo Courtesy of Handsome Wade (@TheHandsomeWade)

Location: Copper Door Coffee is located in 300 W. 1st Ave. #180, Denver. It is open Monday – Thursday 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Recipe: Inverted Aeropress

1 oz coffee beans
100g water

Grind 32 grams slightly finer than drip. Invert Aeropress and make sure to rinse the filter. Pour 100 grams of water on grinds and stir until all grounds are wet. Wait 30 seconds. Top off your Aeropress. Let rest for 30 more seconds. Turn over and plunge into a mug.

Reason: I love brewing on an Aeropress especially when out camping with my family or just needing a single cup of coffee for myself.

Venmo Handle: @Copper-Door

Jacob Monroe – Barista at Jubilee Roasting Co.

Jubilee Coffee

Photo Courtesy of Jacob Monroe

Location: Jubilee Roasting Co. is located in 1452 Kenton St., Aurora. It is open Monday – Saturday 7 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Recipe: Whoop-Whoop Cold-Brew Mocktail
9 oz cold brew coffee
3 oz peach-rum cold foam
To make cold foam, mix oat milk or cream, peach simple syrup, rum reduction or extract to taste. Shake like crazy until foamy.
Start with a glass of your favorite local coffee over ice and top it with this peach and rum-infused oat milk or cream foam. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Enjoy!

Reason: Creamy peaches, deep booziness, crisp and bright iced coffee? Yup. This drink rules. This recipe pushes the boundaries of what coffee can taste like without drowning the taste of the coffee with sugar and cream. The layering is so important because it allows you to experience the different flavors and textures of this drink a little bit at a time. The last sip will be totally different than the first, and it only gets better as those flavors continue to join together! Boom. Get creative, be nice, have fun.

Venmo Handle: @Jacob-Monroe-1

Brett Newsted- Barista at Blue Sparrow Coffee

Photo Courtesy of Blue Sparrow Coffee

Location: Blue Sparrow Coffee is located on 3070 Blake St. #180., Denver. It is open Monday – Sunday 6:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Recipe: Café Bombón
2 oz espresso
2-4 oz condensed milk
Layer the espresso lightly on top of the condensed milk allowing them to stay separated.
Take it quickly like a shot.

Reason: A super creamy sweet treat for early morning risers, like me, that don’t have a lot of time before work. Also, for people who have a hard time with the strong taste of espresso. You can even add fun flavors and mix them into the condensed milk beforehand to add another layer to the flavor profile. Strawberry flavoring/puree added to the condensed milk is amazing; Pumpkin is great too! Very popular in Spain and Vietnam.

Venmo Handle: @mainspring-tipfund