Downtown cafe lets you sip and shop

Putting the ‘shop’ in coffee shop

Mar 30, 2016 at 1:00 am
Downtown cafe lets you sip and shop
Photo by Kelley ONeill

So, we're not going to lie to you, ASHE Supply Co. is a full-on hipster hangout. From the chalkboard walls to the pour-over coffee makers that line the counter to the bar made of reclaimed wood, it's certainly not breaking any interior design molds and clearly stays with that industrial barn aesthetic that just about every new joint in Detroit is taking on.

With that caveat out of the way, we can get down to brass tacks. ASHE Supply Co. is a little coffee shop that adds a little bit more to the coffee shop experience by also peddling coffee bar equipment as well as some goods made under the "ASHE Supply Co." umbrella. The interior is cozy and offers mostly communal seating that will probably force you to sit with strangers.

The company's selection of brand T-shirts, beanies, and other accessories and some pretty brass pour over machines are for sale on a high shelf behind the register (which is really an iPad). They also sell goodies made by local bakeries like Sister Pie. We recommend a savory hand pie or a peanut butter paprika cookie, if it's available. Online, they sell coffee-infused beard oil, beard balm, camper mugs, travel mugs, leather belts, and works by local artists.

The shop's run by A.J. Nichols, a company co-founder who has an extremely hands-on approach to running his business. He roasts all the coffee himself inside the shop, and that job often keeps him there late. But his work isn't done once the beans are roasted and ready to be brewed into high-quality coffee the next morning. He also screenprints all of the company's T-shirts and crafts the other goods in their line. He's a busy man.

Nichols has a clear commitment to keep things local and support other craft businesses. He's also worked with Detroit Beer Co. to create a limited edition coffee-infused stout called Won't You Be My Neighbor. According to DBC head brewer Justin Riopelle, the relationship came together naturally because of the businesses' close proximity. Both are located on Broadway across from the Detroit Opera House, which leads us to believe these two craft companies will continue to collaborate in the future.

For those looking to pick up ASHE's locally roasted coffee beans, they're for sale are a few shops around Detroit, including downtown's City Market.