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Calgary: All isn't lost; Big Mountain (sorta) and new west end caffe

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Calgary: All isn't lost; Big Mountain (sorta) and new west end caffe

John Manzo | Aug 6, 2005 12:48 AM

I walked by the former Big Mountain location (it closes as a coffeehouse on August 1- solely a roaster now) and there were signs for "Bumpers (or Busters, something like that) Opening Soon" and checked it out- they were doing a "soft opening" and let me in for a free single short and a chat. The place is named after the owner's gramps.

The new owners are two gentlemen who are, no offense to Wade, clearly a lot more aware of the customer service aspect of this business. They have inherited all of Wade's equipment, including his crotchless portafilter, and some of the same staff (not the fellow who is, apparently, opening a new shop, but two young Asian women who do know how to pull nice shots). They are also using and selling Big Mountain beans. The big changes are to the food menu, with a more eclectic breakfast menu and bigger sandwich board. I have high hopes for this place.

Elsewhere, the Caffeine and Leaves that closed (it was in a converted house at 10 st and 6 ave, clearly hoping to cash in on the new condo towers but it was a little too soon) has similarly been resurrected... still something-something "urban coffeehouse." Same deal as before; coffeehouse with baked stuff and panini menu below, martini bar (nonsmoking!!) upstairs. Their beans are from Fratello and the single espresso I had there was short with good crema and it tastes like they use the Good Earth blend or something close to it. Perfection, for my taste. I do wish them luck in a tricky location.

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