Most of us need a little something to get us going in the morning. That something is coffee. Dark roast, light roast, with cream or without—everybody knows how they like their version of the fragrant caffeinated drink. Here are some of our favorite places in Tucson to start your day.
Adventure Coffee Roasters: Adventure Coffee Roasters’ founder Scott Gilliland didn’t realize his passion for coffee until he was well into adulthood. Then, he went full force. Gilliland learned how to source, roast, and grind his own coffee beans, and eventually began working with his family to sell 100% certified-organic and almost always fair trade coffee. Find Adventure Coffee Roasters at the Rillito Park Farmers’ Market every Sunday morning.
What we get: A cup of their daily roast ($2), which comes free when you buy a pound of coffee beans.
Savaya Coffee Market: Owner Burc Maruflu’s family has been roasting coffee beans for hundreds of years; roasting and preparing coffee is simply in his blood. When Maruflu moved to Tucson from Turkey and couldn’t find coffee that he enjoyed, he took matters into his own hands and opened Savaya Coffee Market. Now, there are four Savaya Coffee locations where you can find a variety of single-origin, organic beans, coffee drinks, and homemade local pastries.
What we get: An iced toddy, strong enough to propel us through the day and cold enough to make the summer heat a tad more bearable.
Exo Roast Co.: You can taste the Sonoran Desert at Exo Roast Co. While the hand-roasted coffee beans aren’t sourced from anywhere near the Exo Roast Co. shop on 6th Avenue, it’s things like the chiltepin cold brew and mesquite toddy which add that desert flair to their offerings.
What we get: A seasonal iced toddy (right now their Mesquite Toddy is in season!) with a splash of cream, paired with a local offering from the EXO kitchen.
Barrio Barista: Barrio Barista is the newest spot to get your caffeine fix in Tucson. The homey, family-run business located in Barrio Hollywood has it all: cold brew, espresso, breakfast burritos, and churro sundaes.
What we get: A hochesso, a mix between horchata and an espresso. Someday you’ll say, “Barrio Barista had it first!”
Le Buzz Caffe: Longtime Le Buzz Caffe owner Margaret Hadley takes pride in the fact that Le Buzz Caffe was one of the first places in Tucson to roast their own coffee beans. Today, they continue to make rich, smooth coffee drinks with their beans and even sell bags of their signature roast for you to take home.
What we get: A mocha, which is smooth without bitterness, and offers just enough sweet chocolately flavor.
Header image by Kate Selby.