In a town where local is the new black, Missoula’s Black Coffee Roasting Company has been the place to get locally-roasted coffee since 2010. From the start, owners Jim Chapman and Matt McQuilkin committed to serving only 100% organic coffees, “because it is important for the people producing the coffee, the landscape the coffee is grown in, and the people drinking it.” Their AM (espresso blend) and PM (decaf) are at the core of their lineup, but it is their single origin beans and seasonal blends (BLOOM, TOPO, and DRIFT) that truly communicate Black Coffee’s self-imposed obligation to build farmer-to-roaster relationships and “support those growing great coffee.”
Located close to downtown Missoula, Black Coffee roasts and serves in a semicircular, 5,000-square-foot Quonset hut. The café not only pulls espresso, but they also pour “Slow Coffee”—pour over and Chemex—and cold brew. Their Mint Infused Cold Brew, first released in 2016, is a must taste, especially during the sweltering summer months. You can also help yourself to self-serve drip coffee with its $2 suggested donation jar. Their menu rounds out with teas, shrubs—a tonic made with fruit, sugar, and vinegar added to soda water—and a scrumptious list of toasts.
Chapman and McQuilkin undeniably pay forward the love Montanans have for their home state and the awe-inspiring landscapes that surround them. Black Coffee’s Instagram feed (@blackcoffee.mt) posts more images of Montana sunrises, sunsets, and mountainscapes than coffee. Their hats, shirts, mugs, bandanas, travel coffee kits, coffee bags, and other merchandise embrace the outdoors with local art and graphics. Their motto is #wander…always with coffee. So, next time you take a trek to explore the Bitterroot Mountains, take Black Coffee with you and enjoy a steaming #montanamoment. //
Michal Bennett is a regular Buzz Bin contributor. She also wrote about state flowers and birds in July.