Boulder Coffee Co.

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Locations Phone
100 Alexander Street, Rochester NY, 14620 [Directions] 585 454 7140
1 Public Market, Rochester NY [Directions] 585 232 5282
Hours
Alexander Street
Monday - Thursday: 7:00AM to 11:00PM
Friday: 7:00AM to Midnight
Saturday: 8:00AM to Midnight
Sunday: 8:00AM to 11:00PM
Public Market
Thursday (5/1 to 9/1): 7:00AM to 1:00PM
Saturday: 6:00AM to 2:00PM
Sunday (5/1 to 9/1): 7:00AM to 1:00PM
Alcohol
Alexander Street - Yes
Public Market - No
Wheelchair Accessible
Both locations
Website
[WWW]http://www.BoulderCoffeeCo.com
[WWW]Facebook

Boulder Coffee Co. debuted in July 2005 to answer a need for coffee and community in the South Wedge. Today, they have two locations, although there used to be more (see below). One is at the Public Market and the other on Alexander Street in the Wedge. Both serve coffee roasted at the market location. Their Boulder Blend, the house dark roast served daily, is certified Fair Trade, as are several of their single origin variety blends.

Baked goods include cookies, panini sandwiches, breakfast sandwiches, and sweets.

Boulder's owner, Lyjha Wilton, also owns dozens of other apartments and houses in the Wedge.

History

For a long time Lyjha Wilton had had a vision for the abandoned brick building on the corner of South Clinton and Alexander. As recently as the early 2000s, this part of the Wedge was still troubled. The building Wilton admired was surrounded by crack houses. Still, heavy traffic at the intersection made it an ideal location for a coffeehouse, so Wilton took the plunge, despite having no prior experience or education in retail management. He bought the crack houses as well, turning some into respectable apartments and one into a wood-fired pizzeria, today leased to Napa.1

Boulder Coffee Company was finally opened in July 2005. Just a year later a pickup truck crashed through the front window and façade, knocking out a front corner of the building. Boulder was subsequently closed for two and a half weeks. They reopened on August 14, 2006 with a new counter, layout, and a temporary bulkhead, although the building still needed repairs. Unable to find matching bricks, Lyjha replaced the broken bricks with interior bricks, and then hid the interior bricks with new bricks.

In January 2007 the scaffolding came down from the repairs to reveal a new stage and all-glass façade.

On March 16 2008, Boulder was hit by an SUV. This marks the fourth time that a motor vehicle has crashed into that building.

On July 16, 2008, Boulder was hit for the fifth time by a vehicle trying to swerve out of the way of a car running a red light. No structural damage has occurred with the exception of a few exterior bricks.

Locations

Alexander Street

The original and flagship location. Situated on the corner of Alexander and South Clinton, the loft-like space includes a stage with a piano and amplifier setup that regularly hosts small shows, open mic nights, and other free events. The decor consists of a rotating selection of local artwork and a lot of second-hand vintage, with a touch of Mid-Century Modern. There are couches and comfy chairs, an ATM, and free Wi-Fi (ask a barista for the password). In warmer weather customers can enjoy a large outdoor patio area with tables and chairs and a fire pit.

This location has its own parking lot, which used to host the South Wedge Farmers' Market. BoulderFest was held here every Summer from 2006 to 2013.

The regular schedule for live shows is as follows:

Everything starts at 8:00PM. The latest list can be found on their [WWW]Facebook page.

Public Market

All coffee served at the other locations is roasted here. Open only during Public Market hours. This location was bought from Java Joe's.

Former Locations

Brooks Landing

In the 19th Ward, adjacent to the University of Rochester pedestrian bridge and bordering PLEX. Boulder came to Brooks Landing in 2009 as part of UR's Brooks Landing Project and initially moved to a renovated building at 955 Genesee Street. Finding the two-story space too large, they shifted across the street to the new strip mall. The parking lot was shared with several other businesses.

955 Genesee now houses the [WWW]Chabad House of Rochester. Photos of the 955 location may be seen [WWW]here.

This location was sold in January 2015 to City Councilmember Dana Miller and is now Brue Coffee.

Downtown

Known as "Java Joe's by Boulder Coffee Co.," this location was a kiosk on the ground floor of the Crossroads Building in the Four Corners neighborhood. It was sold to Boulder by the now-defunct Spin Caffe. Like most restaurants downtown, it catered primarily to the working crowd and was thus open only on weekdays during work hours. It closed in 2013 and became Crossroads Cafe.

Park Avenue

This location at 739 Park Avenue was purchased from Spin Caffe in 2011. Outdoor seating was available on the sidewalk. Did not have a stage but did host live music. Sold to a pair of longtime Boulder employees in 2015 and became Cafe Sasso, which still serves Boulder coffee.

Photo Album

BoulderOut.jpgAlexander Street location. JohnSachelli20070309.jpgJohn Sachelli on stage at Alexander St. (cc)2007 John Lam PublicMarket.JPGPublic Market (Nov. 2012)
bldr1.jpgPark Ave interior, 7-2011 (defunct) BrooksLanding.JPGDefunct Brooks Landing location (Nov. 2012) StateStreet.JPGDefunct downtown location. (Nov. 2012)

Comments & Discussion

Please see the Boulder Coffee Co./Comments page to see older, archived comments. Discussions about the RocWiki page itself go in Boulder Coffee Co./Talk.

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2013-02-16 23:42:19   Went to the South Wedge location a few weeks ago. Most hipster coffee place in Rochester from the dozen I've visited so far, after Joe Bean. But in a good way - great music, good people-watching, interesting art on the walls. A place you want to linger. Had a good capuccino and a quality sandwich. Any place that has a good atmosphere, capuccinos, and food is a winner in my book. —LH


2013-04-14 21:00:00   I appreciate the live music from SoundRabbit (Edit: "SpontAneity?" Really, autocorrect?) tonight but dear lord: this coffee is the nastiest, most stale dregs I ever had. Generous cream and sugar are necessary to make it remotely palatable. At least it's better than the cup I brought back which tasted like bell peppers. In retrospect, I should have more carefully inspected the mug which had soup stuck on it. (Edit: at Park Ave. location.)JasonOlshefsky


2013-11-26 11:07:03   Alexander St location: First time here in about 4 years. Love the changes that have happened in that time, I enjoy the layout, the art on the walls, and the overall feel of the place. Baristas were super-friendly, drink was good (Chai latte), and the food was tasty (N. Winton Cordon Bleu wrap). My only complaint is that the wireless is abysmally slow. Like can't even check my email slow. Since I frequent coffee shops primarily to work, this is a pretty big negative for me. That aside, if I'm looking for somewhere to meet with a friend, or have work to do that doesn't require the internet, I might try again. —LauraShum