Photo by Reed Kenney.

Openings/Closings

Tribal Cafe Will Win Your Heart with Beet Lattes

The new Bishop Arts coffee shop is full of good vibes.

Hailey Nutt and Brenton Phillips’ new Tribal All-Day Cafe in the Bishop Arts District is home to bright-pink beet lattes, and toasts spread with cashew-based jalapeño cream cheese or ricotta made from macadamia nuts.

The couple champions the cult of the nourishing and plant-focused, and so their coffee shop is a place where organic, cold-pressed juices come with dandelion greens or tart cherry, where an eye-catching smoothie might be a blend of dragon fruit, aloe vera, dates, and almond milk.

What I appreciate about their addition to a rapidly developing juice-bar/coffee shop model is a focus on nut-milks and sprouted grains grounded in formal training. For the venture that grew out of Nutt and Phillips’ Tribal juice line, Nutt enlisted chef Rosmery Menendez, who “sprinkles pixie dust over everything.” (Like Nutt, Menendez studied with plant-based guru Matthew Kenny. Unlike Kenny, their items are not fully raw and vegan, though they take inspiration.)

From their start at Good Local Market, where their juices were side-by-side with soil-dusted, just-picked-from-the-earth produce, they brought the family of small vendors and local farms whose cheeses, eggs, and greens they now use in creative, seasonally inspired, bright vegetarian dishes. Their Green Goddess sandwich uses the excellent fresh mozzarella from Full Quiver farms.

Their goal: to foster community and get back to simplicity.

When she dreamed of a brick-and-mortar, Nutt says she imagined a place where the menu would change frequently, and the little printed quotes she places thoughtfully next to succulent plants might keep someone company at the light-drenched marble counter-top on a quiet morning.

“I want the feeling of walking into a friend’s house,” Nutt says. In my eyes, she’s succeeding.

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