Home, work, coffee
If the first place is home and the second place is work, then the third place is where we go to be free of the obligations of the first and second, according to urban sociologist Ray Oldenburg in his 1989 book The Great Good Place. That's the theory that drove Roland Smith to start soon-to-open Third Space Coffee (6570 N. Academy Blvd., thirdspacecoffee.org).
"We really got into the coffee shop business at first by asking 'where can we create a community?'" he says. It's his first foray into the food-and-drink business, but he's owned small businesses before and has also been a pastor for 20 years. Smith has also been a home aficionado of craft coffee for a long time. He's bringing in single-origin, fair-wage, sustainably grown beans from local roasters Building3 and SwitchBack, as well as from Boulder's Ozo Coffee and Onyx Coffee Lab from his hometown, Fayetteville, Arkansas. He's also going to stock beer and wine, including a "719 beer wall" of brews made within the area code.
"We're also really paying attention to how we can be a help to the community and the city," he adds. He plans to team up with charity organizations like Springs Rescue Mission and anti-human trafficking group Restore Innocence, helping to raise awareness and funds. Third Space will soft-open on Tuesday, Nov. 1, with a grand opening on Friday, Nov. 18.
The Goose is loose
Paragon culinary school graduate Jamie Faulkner has opened a food truck (with no relation to the downtown coffee house of the same name), Wild Goose Catering & BBQ (facebook.com/Wildgoosebbq). It's Faulkner's way of expressing his lifelong passion for barbecue, influenced by his growing up in Kentucky, a few hours from barbecue-Mecca Memphis. But don't expect orthodox Tennessee meats from this truck. Wild Goose has its own style.
"I've traveled all over the country tasting different barbecues, and this is what I like," he says. And what he likes is pork, cooked soft enough to be pulled apart by hand. He turns around quite a bit — between 300 and 350 pounds a week on average, and says he'd like to double that. The truck also dishes out chicken, brisket and all manner of other bites.
"We've smoked just about everything," he says. "I've even smoked black cherry chocolate lava cakes."
Faulkner has eight years' experience in the food industry, going from retirement community line chef to restaurant owner. He also owned The Reserve at the now-closed Gold Rush Hotel & Casino in Cripple Creek.
"Cost me a lot of money to open that, and it was a long drive back and forth every day," he says. He says cost is the reason he chose to open Wild Goose as a food truck instead of a brick-and-mortar location. But should Wild Goose continue to grow, Faulkner does hope to expand it into a traditional restaurant.