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Given Colorado’s robust coffee culture, there are myriad local gift possibilities for even the most discerning java junkie on your list. Head down to your nearest commercial district, and you’ll likely find an artisan coffee roaster or a hand-crafted pottery shop selling bespoke mugs. Duck into a funky kitchen boutique like Boulder’s Peppercorn or the Cupboard in Fort Collins, and you may stumble upon one of those who-knew-you-needed-it coffee contraptions that make perfect gifts. But if time is tight and you don’t have any spare hours to browse, we can help. Here, a curated collection of locally made gifts for your favorite coffee lover.
Not all who wander are lost—but they may be undercaffeinated. Fort Collins–based Wander Coffee can help you out on that front with small-batch roasted blends like Organic Night Sky, which has notes of toasted pecan and baking cocoa, and Exclusive Wilder, with its chai spice and blueberry jamminess (both around $20 for a 16-ounce bag). If your giftee prefers single-origin beans, opt for the rich caramel and cinnamon undertones of Wander’s Guatemala Antigua San Sebastian ($24 for a 16-ounce bag). Best of all, the Beatrix Potter–esque package designs are so cute, you can skip the chore of gift wrapping. Available online and at various retailers
Give One Year of 5280 for just $16.
Want to add a dose of adventure to someone’s morning ritual? Give them a Regenerative Coffee Subscription ($25 per month) from Denver-based roaster Tablón, and each month they’ll get 12 ounces of whole-bean coffee from different regions across the globe. An accompanying letter from head roaster Kevin Mayberry explains his methodology and what tasting notes to expect, while also providing details about each coffee producer’s regenerative growing practices and social impact within its community. Available online
It’s fair to assume the java-loving yet caffeine-averse person on your list prefers their decaf with a side of creamer, not chemicals. Unfortunately, some decaffeination methods use methylene chloride or ethyl acetate, both of which are technically safe but are also present in paint thinners and nail polish removers. (Eww.) This year, check the label on that bag of beans you’re wrapping to ensure it was decaffeinated using Swiss Water’s proprietary, chemical-free process, which removes 99.9 percent of caffeine but maintains the beans’ natural flavors and smells. Many local grinds do, including the Organic Decaf OZO Blend ($15.50 for a 12-ounce bag) from Boulder’s OZO Coffee Company and SWP Espresso Decaf ($16 for a 16-ounce bag) from the Human Bean in Woodland Park. Available online and at various retailers
In the days of yore, palate-offending instant coffee would have been banished to white elephant gift swaps. Today, roasters like Crested Butte’s First Ascent have elevated the reputation of this quick caffeine hit. The difference is in the details: By carefully selecting specialty-grade beans for its light-roasted Guatemala ($20 for eight single-serving packets) and Variety Pack ($30 for 12 packets), then roasting and freeze-drying the beans in-house, the First Ascent team has created a ready-in-a-flash cup your recipient will savor, not choke down. Available online and at various retailers
So much to brew, so little time to brew it. Solve the woes of your favorite time-crunched coffee snob with the 20-ounce Pour Over ($45) from Denver-based BrüMate. The handy one-container system streamlines the process of the perfect cup with a custom dripper and filters that nest effortlessly into a stylish, leak-proof tumbler. The brewing takes mere minutes, but the coffee stays hot for up to six hours, thanks to the to-go mug’s triple-insulated walls. It’s also cup-holder-friendly, and most colorways are dishwasher safe. Available online and at various retailers
There’s no question that stroopwafels—those round sandwich cookies with a waffle exterior and syrupy filling—are delicious on their own. But balance the treat on the rim of your coffee mug, wait about 30 seconds for the steam to soften the waffle and turn the insides gooey, and, well…just try it sometime. Trust us. In 2017, Will Dugan, a pro cyclist turned pastry chef, set out to make stroopwafels something everyone can enjoy, particularly vegans. By replacing the recipe’s eggs, milk, and dairy with plant-based alternatives, Boulder-based Dugan created a vegan-friendly version that he dubbed a Stroopvafel. Pop a few of the individually wrapped caramel or maple Stroopvafels (both $22 for a box of 12) from Vafels into your favorite coffee lover’s stocking. Need a gluten-free option? Go with Vafels’ thicker Gluten-Free Liège Vafels ($18 for six). Available online and at various retailers