One of the best things about traveling to different cities is to find those hidden gems within their limits. I’m a Starbucks lover (hey, I’m a gold card member) but I was treated to a visit and tour of Anodyne Coffee Roasting Company in the Walkers Point neighborhood of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and I felt like I had found a great piece of history.
The large brick building in the industrial section of the city showcases some of the cream city brick that the area is known for. The inside of this renovated warehouse has open face brick, and exposed wood in the ceilings. Coffee is roasted in small batches on site, and the smell is delicious. We found out that the shop is a member of several green initiatives, and takes that very seriously. Their new roaster allows them to use the energy that is created roasting the first few batches of coffee for the day to roast the remaining batches, therefore eliminating lots of air pollution AND cutting down on costs for them. Talk about amazing. Especially with a building IN a district that you could tell probably had lots of air gunk back in the day. The tour of the roasting area was pretty neat. For a company to produce the amount of coffee that Anodyne does
I personally loved how open and bright the coffee shop was. I remember commenting how it didn’t look like the starving artist type of coffeehouse, but one where anyone and everyone could come and enjoy. The wooden chairs are branded with capital ‘A’s and are littered throughout the very spacious dining area. They may not be supremely comfortable if you’re tall, but for fun sized people like myself, they are perfect.
When I sat down to eat my bagel and cream cheese, and drink my Nutty Pedestrian (hazelnut, milk, espresso and ice) I remarked that it was nice to have so much space to work – if I were indeed working, and not enjoying a random day with Mr. Houseful. This small breakfast kept me quite sated for the majority of the day. So much so, that I didn’t have an inkling of an appetite when we got the Milwaukee Public Market (which you’ll learn about tomorrow,) and there were lobster dinners for less than $15 folks. FIFTEEN DOLLARS! Wait. Where was I? Oh, that’s right. Breakfast. It was delicious.
For those of you used to going into a coffeehouse and looking up at a menu, know that there are none hanging over the bar (a bar that serves craft beer – although I don’t indulge) so it encourages you to interact with the staff. For real. Interact. These guys and gals know quite a bit about the coffee that they are serving because they roast it on site, and have to go through some pretty awesome training to boot! The training room is on site, and while I was there, there were some folks using it for a business meeting.
There were quite a few people in the place having meetings, or working intently on their laptops and tablets. The thing is, you didn’t feel crowded because of the sheer size of this place. You can tell that it was a warehouse, but that it was turned into something quite nostalgic feeling. The bar is a rescue from some bar in town, and was repurposed to literally be a bar. How about that? You can also come to Anodyne for live entertainment, even if you have children. You can find out which shows are coming, and which are child friendly through the Anodyne Coffee Roasting Company app, which can be found on Google Play or iTunes. It’s quite informative. While it will tell you which coffees are roasting, and the upcoming schedules, it will not tell you what you can order. Remember, you need to interact with the staff. It’s the whole purpose of coming OUTSIDE to order coffee, right?
Will Mr. Houseful and I search this place out again on our next trip to Milwaukee. You bet. Nothing like having a space that doesn’t feel touristy to get a quick bite to eat, right before going out to be touristy.