One of my top-five favorite TV shows is Boardwalk Empire. Boardwalk Empire tells the story of a twenties gang called the Big Seven Group and their rise to gangster fame. The Big Seven came together to bring people booze during Prohibition by smuggling barrels of Canadian Club whisky across the border. Gangsters like Al Capone, Arnold Rothstein, Nucky Johnson, Meyer Lansky and, my personal favorite, Lucky Luciano.
Why is this relevant? It’s relevant because right now in my top-five favorite Edmonton coffee shops is Lui-Chi’s. A shop that sells wood roasted, whisky barrel aged coffee (see what I did there? Luciano-Lui-Chis, whisky barrels… you get it).
Here are the five things you need to know about Lui-Chi’s Coffee:
- They started as an espresso truck, and quite possibly the cutest espresso truck.
- They have a new café located in Phipps McKinnon Building (10020 – 101A Ave NW) on Rice Howard Way, and it officially opened on November 16, 2018. The café is open Monday to Thursday from 7am – 5pm and Friday-Saturday until 6pm.
- The coffee is amazing, plain and simple. The beans are aged in whisky barrels for 90 days, and then roasted over an open fire to just past the “first crack”. The result is a super aromatic roast, with bold smooth coffee flavours and a hint of bourbon on the finish.
- They have food. The pastries are made by Arnaud Herodet, founder of Arno’s Fine French Pastry. Try the chouquettes – delicate puffs made from pâte à choux available in sweet or savoury- the perfect bite. I highly recommend the cheese croissant, which might be the best croissant I’ve ever had, period.
- A portion of the profits is donated to a dog rescue shelter. How can you not love that?