Palmer Lake’s former Depot spot has morphed into many things over the years; currently there’s signage on the complex for a salon, a Wild Bill’s Buffalo Wings location, the Ugly Mug Saloon, and this 8-month-old java stop.
The café and gallery descriptors are a stretch given the small, quirky space (with some art on the walls à la most coffee shops) and a very limited menu — six breakfast sandwiches only available until 10 a.m., then Spartan baked items and pre-made boxed lunches.
Co-owners Tara Santillanez and Shelton Segrest are the barista and (air) roaster respectively, and credit due, they have created some unique drinks with a partial health-food focus, utilizing a mix of Monin syrups, their quality house Brazilian-Colombian medium roast on drip and ’spro, and inputs like superfood powders and MCT oil.
Our Palmer Divide is a damn good dirty chai made from Chamba Chai powder and an atypical dash of hazelnut syrup added to the coffee; it’s more gingery, modestly sweet.
I’ll call the Indigo Fairy Blend an acquired taste, with chamomile, peppermint, pineapple, ashwagandha and butterfly pea flower powders with recommended added beet powder and a honey spoonful all combining in warmed oat milk for an odd, bright purple, deeply earthy, mildly fruity concoction. It grows on us, but I imagine will be off-putting to anyone who doesn’t already know the word “adaptogen.”
We grab a boxed lunch to go, stuffed with commercial snacks like a bag of Cheetos, stick of cheese and pack of crackers supporting a simple buffalo chicken deli meat sandwich on Dave’s Killer bread. Mom coulda’ made it, but for $12 it delivers quantity. Peanut butter oat bars, on the other hand, are too tiny for the $4.50 price tag, despite good flavor and a lengthy list of 22 ingredients including chia, hemp, pumpkin and sunflower seeds.