Boulder’s Dragonfly Coffee Roasters has racked up scores of accolades over its seven years in business, including America’s Second Best Espresso at the 2016 national Coffee Fest trade show. But one thing the award-winning roaster has lacked? Its own retail space for introducing customers to its artisan, direct-trade coffees. That was, until January 2, when it opened a public-facing tasting room in North Boulder. Tamas Christman, Dragonfly’s founder, says that the shop is meant to welcome the coffee novice and sophisticate alike, with an experience that is completely focused on the beans.

“My goal is to have engaging coffee experience…we don’t have any food, no milk, it’s all about the coffee,” Christman says. “[It’s] not in a pretentious way that we would suggest you not using milk, it’s more that this space, particularly, is just designed [for visitors to] interact with the coffee and learn about the farmers.” Christman says the cornerstone of his business is his relationship with the growers who produce his beans. He works with them directly to get a product that suits his discerning palate, and then pays them sustainable prices for their crops.

“Coffee as a whole is very undervalued across the United States,” Christman explains. “It’s very highly valued in Asia and in Australia, but I think that the farm-to-cup model in the United States is very antiquated in its price structure. It really doesn’t allow for much growth for the farmer, or for any producer.”

The new tasting room is open from 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Monday through Friday. Enthusiasts can sip single-origin and blended coffees prepared via their choice of five extraction methods: classic drip, espresso, pour-over, Chemex, or the bloom method (which combines elements of the pour-over and Aeropress extraction methods with scientific precision).A cup of joe will set you back anywhere from $3.50 to $20, depending on the extraction method and rarity of the varietal or blend. We’re partial to the Los Congos Paca Mara prepared in the Chemex, which is just the right extraction method to convey the Nicaraguan hybrid bean’s more delicate floral notes, cranberrylike tartness, and raspberry-esque sweetness. One sip, and you’ll quickly realize why milk and sugar aren’t needed here.

If you do require milk, sugar, and food along with your Dragonfly Coffee, sit tight. Christman is planning to open a full-service cafe in Boulder by the end of the year. And if you can’t make it out to North Boulder, you can sample Dragonfly’s beans at local grocers Marczyck Fine Foods in Denver and a handful of Boulder County Whole Foods Market locations), cafes (the Bindery in LoHi and Boulder’s Trident Booksellers and Cafe), and by ordering online.

1501 Lee Hill Road, No. 22, Boulder. 303-579-2154

Haley Gray
Haley Gray
Haley Gray is a Boulder-based freelance journalist. Her work has appeared in 5280, Roads and Kingdoms, Boulder Magazine, and the Albuquerque Journal.