Until public-transit officials make our dream of commuting to work by rollycoaster a reality, we'll have to settle for the adrenaline rush of traditional pick-me-ups. Percolate perkiness with today's Groupon: for $10, you get $20 worth of freshly brewed coffee, beans for home brewing, equipment, and more at Transcend Coffee. Your Groupon is redeemable at both of its locations—on 62 Avenue and 109 Street.
Transcend Coffee stocks an eclectic selection of coffee beans, fresh roasted and professionally massaged in small batches on-site five days a week. Single-origin bags of beans, such as the rich almond- and chocolate-tinged Brazilian delarisse francys ($15 per 12 oz. bag), share gossip with green, unroasted beans, such as the finca vista Hermosa "elephant bean", a bright and acidic Guatemalan legume ($9 per lb.). Rich espresso blends ($15+) preside over the bean-kingdom with caffeinated fists of caramely, smoky goodness. In addition to gourmet goods, Transcend stocks an eclectic selection of equipment necessary for brewing a beautiful cup of beans to sip at daybreak, including the stylish and simplistic Hario woodneck drip brewer ($44) and Bodum's grab-and-go traveling press ($15).
The sleek coffee bars offer a bright setting for your morningly pick-me-up, with urbane design elements such as exposed brick walls and globular lighting fixtures. Both Transcend locations boast menus of various coffee drinks and treats such as affogato or the Belgian-style liege waffles available at the 109 Street location only. Swing by and relax, where a cappuccino ($3.50) or a freshly frothed latte ($4+), brewed at the hands of highly trained baristas wielding top-of-the-line equipment, is only minutes away from your tongue straw.
Transcend Coffee's owner was featured by Global Edmonton, and one of its baristas was mentioned in the Journal. Nine Facebookers and eight Yelpers give it a five-star average, and 78 per cent of more than 150 Urbanspooners like it:
Transcend Coffee's ambassadors make several international trips each year in their search for green coffee farms. They meet with small-scale, eco-friendly growers to tour their crops and microbrewing mills, focusing on building long-term relationships with those who are passionate about coffee. They then buy directly from the farmers, shipping beans back across oceans to Transcend Coffee's central roastery and three cafés scattered across Edmonton. Here, they roast and brew specialty artisan coffees, educate their visitors on the background of each batch, and illustrate the brewing process through interpretive dance.
Using ever-evolving methods, the brewers adopt a trial-and-error approach to defining each coffee's definitive flavour profile. Two licensed Q coffee graders often smell and taste each batch of coffee, and they sort coffees based on rigid quality standards, looking for underdeveloped roasted beans known as “quakers” or “the stupid lighter ones.”
The cafes boast shelves of roasted coffees such as bwayi from Burundi, michioy from Guatemala, and certified organic beans from Santa Lucia. In the store, staffers also point out the highlights of automatic drip brewers, manual brewers, and bean grinders from manufacturers such as Baratza, Bonavita, and Technivorm.