We love stories like this one. Fusing the workplace realities of coffee with the noble goal of outreach, training and mentoring for at-risk youth, a new coffee destination has emerged in Denver. It’s not a proprietary model—we’ve seen practiced in places like Street Bean in Seattle, Carrot in Edmonton—but in the rhythm of today’s modern coffee landscape, these kinds of coffee bars have the opportunity to thrive.
If the quality of the offering is there, and consistent, than the capacity for outreach grows exponentially. Great coffee makes an inarguable case for itself and can be a jumping off point—let’s jump together at the newly opened Prodigy Coffeehouse in Denver, Colorado.
As told to Sprudge by Jeffrey Knott, partner with Prodigy Coffeehouse.
For those who aren’t familiar, will you tell us about your company?
Prodigy Ventures Inc. is Denver’s newest social enterprise network committed to demonstrating that significant social impact and high-caliber business standards can be achieved and mutually enhanced in the same entity. The first venture, Prodigy Coffeehouse, is a neighborhood cafe mentoring, building professional experience, along with teaching the intricacies of specialty coffee to Denver youth.
Can you tell us a bit about the new space?
We’re located at 3801 E 40th Ave in Denver, Colorado—inside of an old Jiffy Lube building. Having six large garage doors allows us to blur the lines between inside, and out. And if that’s not enough, we have a west-facing patio with a view of the Rockies.
What’s your approach to coffee?
We take pride in the skills of our apprentices, and expect nothing less than the best when it comes to product quality and consistency, however, our focus is on the experience. Coffee, to us, means hospitality first. We’re creating a safe place for community members from all walks of life.
Any machines, coffees, special equipment lined up?
We were fortunate to partner with another Colorado company, Allegro Coffee. They’ve been such a strong partner from day one and have helped make it possible for us to sling drinks with a brand new La Marzocco Strada EE. Without the support of both companies, a machine of this caliber would not be possible for a startup nonprofit. Top of the line equipment, alongside 85-plus coffees make it possible for us to provide world-class training to our young apprentices.
What’s your hopeful target opening date/month?
Our grand opening was July 30th! The event featured live music from Youth on Record (another Denver nonprofit), a giveaway sponsored by Allegro Coffee, and discounted memberships.
Are you working with craftspeople, architects, and/or creatives that you’d like to mention?
Prodigy has partnered with Jeffrey Knott, who specializes in opening high-caliber cafes.
What’s the address?