UPDATE: Beans & Barlour celebrated the first day of its soft opening on Aug. 3.
Summer in Florida can be nearly unbearable, and sometimes, a beer isn't enough to take your mind off of that lower back sweat. To beat the heat, downtown St. Pete residents and visitors will soon have the chance to stop by Story Stuart's newly named venture: Beans & Barlour.
Formerly known as Story Brooke Craft Coffee Bar, the specialty coffee bar and dessert lounge at 538 First Ave. N. focuses on alcohol-infused ice cream crafted on-site, which just might make indulging in something sweet after every meal totally acceptable. But boozy frozen treats — vegan soft serve included — aren't the only offerings customers can look forward to.
Beans & Barlour also plans to serve shareables like charcuterie and beer cheese fondue, alongside salads, panini and flatbreads. Meanwhile, the barista team will pour drinks such as lattes made with fair-trade, certified-organic coffee, teas and a selection of Mother Kombucha.
Located in between St. Pete Brewing Co. and Angelo's, Beans & Barlour features a fast-casual-style area up front for patrons on the go, a second dining space with full-service, and a back area called The Library for large groups. What's more, the place isn't far from the monthly First Friday block party or other downtown hotspots.
The bar and lounge was originally scheduled to debut July 27, but its launch date has since been postponed (CL will update this story when the new date is announced). Nevertheless, this reporter went to taste-test Beans & Barlour's signature menu items ahead of the opening. Check out what I tried in the media gallery above and below.
Added bonus: Virgin options of each spirited creation are available, so you don't have to share a single scoop with any kids tagging along. See? It's not selfish — it's responsible.