I was walking around downtown Salt Lake City when I was craving a coffee. This is when I stumbled upon La Barba Coffee. I stepped inside the entrance for restaurant George and used my nose to navigate my way to the coffee shop. There it was – old decorative tile floors, beautiful flowers, and a wonderfully inviting antique feel. This is when I met Liz, the co-owner of this coffee shop. I told her everything I was doing, where I’ve been, and where I’m heading. She was an awesome resource and knew so much about the coffee scene in Utah but also worldwide.
As we were talking she offered me a delicious latte and wanted to hear more about my adventure. It wasn’t every day that I was the one being interviewed. She was very attentive and she knew of some of the coffee shops I had been to and planned on going to. I had a nice time talking with her. She told me that there are three La Barba’s and this is the more traditional and charming location. The La Barba brand began in 2012 with a mission to bring good coffee to everyone in Utah. Their vision is to make coffee and specialty items accessible and loved by anyone who tastes it. Which makes sense considering the website’s slogan is, “Good coffee for everyone.”
This location is in the same building as George, which is a restaurant creating southern-style cuisine from scratch; from the looks of the menu, it sounded delicious. Great place to sneak over to after your coffee break. La Barba’s most popular drinks are their lattes and specialty mocha. The mocha is made with real local chocolate; Liz has been using Solstice Chocolate, the international winner. She is a firm supporter of supporting local. If you are a chocolate lover, you’ve come to the right city! She told me that Salt Lake City is the chocolate capital of the world; some of the best chocolatiers in the world are right here. If you love chocolate, you’re in luck! Liz plans to carry chocolate from all the local winners.
On the side, Liz runs an informational coffee and chocolate program at the Salt Lake City Public Library. She has about 100 to 200 guests attend her seminar monthly. You can learn anything from pairing chocolate and coffee to chocolate and cheese. She brings in a large number of chocolatiers, coffee roasters, and even local pastry artists. Some of the local businesses include Solstice Chocolate, Cache Toffee Collection, Cacao Review, Amano Chocolate, Ritual Chocolate, Goodnow Farms Chocolate, Sean McKee’s Cheese, and many others. I hope to attend one of these events next time I am in Salt Lake City. You better sign up quickly because they do fill up fast. Best part? It’s free.
I was about to head out when I met the other co-owner, Ryan. He was also super nice and insisted on making me a good-looking photographic latte. We all had a lot of laughs because he kept messing up the latte-art but it was a lot of fun nonetheless. Liz and Ryan are a strong mother-son team who do a great job of running this coffeeshop. I can’t wait to come back.
The bathroom is shared between the restaurant and the coffee shop. They told me they weren’t allowed to put any coffee shop branding on it. Just remember you need a code to get in. I would rank this bathroom a 7/10.