Updated: May 4
There’s No Place Like Foam.
Gabe Hagen and Jesse Shank are serving love with a side of coffee at the newly opened
Brick Road Coffee where all ‘human beans’ are welcome.
PHOENIX, Ariz. (Jan. 21, 2022) -- In the classic film The Wizard of Oz, Dorothy sets out on a journey of self-discovery only to realize that all one really needs to find themself is self-realization and acceptance. At Brick Road Coffee shop in Tempe, co-owners (and husbands), Gabe Hagen and Jesse Shank clicked their heels three times, and have taken this philosophy and made it their mission to accept everyone as they are, no matter where they are on their personal journey. Creating a culture of community where friends and neighbors, new and old alike can come together is just as important as creating the perfect latte. Being members of the LGBTQ+ community, both Hagen and Shank know the struggle to fit in and feel accepted as they are, motivating them even more to provide a space for people that don’t feel like they fit anywhere else.
After moving out of their small Midwestern towns and meeting in Southern California, Hagen and Shank realized just how much coffee shops are centers of the communities they serve. They are a gathering place for exchanging ideas, coming together in common endeavors, and building networks and relationships. They left California to pursue careers in finance in Arizona but once the pandemic hit in early 2020, they wanted to do something that made a difference. Their hope is that the community born at Brick Road Coffee will help elevate their neighbors and make a small yet meaningful impact on their lives.
“I want to be known for how I treat my employees and my community. I want to be known for my coffee, sure, but I want to be known for those two things more. ” - Gabe Hagen
One look at their social media following and you will see how the community they serve truly considers Brick Road Coffee their home away from home. The physical space is just as inviting and diverse as the community they serve. Complete with a custom mural by Paige Reesor, a local Tempe artist, depicting how one’s community can truly support them on their journey to self-discovery, it’s hard to not feel welcome.
Another mural located in the hallway leading to gender-neutral restrooms was custom made by Corrie Mattie or the LA Hope Dealer as she’s known in Los Angeles. The phrase “Cross my Heart and Hope to Fly'' painted against a bright yellow wall with the signature flying monkey is just one of many subtle nods to the film that inspired the name Brick Road Coffee. You’ll also find an LGBTQ lending library in the lounge seating area along with a projection screen where you can enjoy an episode of Golden Girls while a barista crafts a custom beverage on the bright red espresso machine known as Ruby for, you guessed it, the infamous ruby slippers that transport Dorothy “home.” It’s safe to say, there’s no place like Brick Road Coffee.
A great product is important to Gabe and Jesse who took their time selecting the perfect local roaster, CULT Artisan Beverage Company, and pastries brought in by Squarz Bakery in Tempe. Supporting local was a must. Approachability and authenticity are important for their business as well as serving quality, locally made and sourced coffee, tea, and food items. From fresh-squeezed lemonades and caffeine-free iced botanicals to premium nitro cold brews, there is a beverage for everyone. Like everything else at Brick Road Coffee, the goal is for everyone to find something that fits them, from the first-time coffee drinker to the cappuccino connoisseur.
Starting a small business is no easy feat but equipped with business finance experience and a passion to make a difference, Gabe and Jesse opened their doors in early November and slowly expanded their hours and staff to ensure they had everything down to a science ahead of their upcoming Grand Opening Events, taking place Jan. 27 - Jan. 29, 2022. Complete with an official ribbon-cutting hosted by the Tempe Chamber of Commerce and a raffle held to benefit an organization near and dear to their hearts, one•n•ten Phoenix, they have a lot to celebrate! Of course, there will be promotions, offers, and free swag as well for those who attend and their loyal customers who can’t say enough great things about their favorite coffee shop.
Grand Opening Event details:
Raffle tickets benefitting one•n•ten Phoenix are for sale all three days. Cost: $5 per ticket or 5 for $20. Raffle items include a painting from Tempe artist Paige Reesor, CULT Artisan Beverage Company Gift Basket, Brick Road Coffee, Tea, merchandise, gift cards, and more!
Thursday, Jan. 27 - Double stars until 1 pm for Loyalty program members (visit brickroadtempe.com to join)
Friday, Jan. 28 - 11 a.m. Ribbon Cutting Ceremony hosted by the Tempe Chamber of Commerce and FREE hot coffee or iced tea all day
Saturday, Jan. 29 - 4 p.m. Raffle drawing (presence not required to win) FREE medium drink (hot or cold) from 2 pm - 4 pm valid only on this date.
For more information, visit https://www.brickroadtempe.com.