The Coffee Shop Coziness Index: Capitol Hill, Part II

Perry Rhoades sips coffee by the fire outside Amethyst Coffee Co. on 11th Ave at Broadway. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)snow; weather; cowx; cozy; coffee shop; capitol hill; food; denver; denverite; colorado; kevinjbeaty
Perry Rhoades sips coffee by the fire outside Amethyst Coffee Co. on 11th Ave at Broadway. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite) snow; weather; cowx; cozy; coffee shop; capitol hill; food; denver; denverite; colorado; kevinjbeaty
Perry Rhoades sips coffee by the fire outside Amethyst Coffee Co. on 11th Ave at Broadway. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

If you thought coziness was a subjective, indefinable quality… well, you’re right, but that’s not going to stop us from trying to measure it. We’re visiting Denver coffee shops, cafés and tea houses neighborhood by neighborhood to do it.

We’ll award points in several categories: Temperature, comfortable seating, decor, music and menu. Shops can earn bonus points for things like having a working fireplace. To be as fair as possible about the temperature, your intrepid reporter will wear the same thing to every spot.

This week, we got good and caffeinated in Capitol Hill.

Roostercat Coffee House

1045 Lincoln St.

Roostercat Coffee House on Lincoln Street. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite) coffee shop; capitol hill; food; denver; denverite; colorado; kevinjbeaty;
Roostercat Coffee House on Lincoln Street. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Roostercat’s charm is its somewhat tossed-together feel, with its alternately exposed brick, brightly painted and mismatched-wood paneled walls, not to mention the hodgepodge of art and messy bookshelves. A little messiness makes a place feel homey.

People mostly sit there working quietly and the music is appropriately low to match. While I was there, they were playing soft indie rock (think The Dodos).

The wooden and metal chairs aren’t especially comfy, but they’ve got an over-stuffed leather couch and two matching love seats for the taking.

Temperature: 7
Comfy seats: 8
Decor: 8
Music: 10
Menu: 6
Bonus: +1 for patio heaters

Total score: 39

Drip Denver

955 Lincoln St.

Joseph Mondragon (right) works inside Drip Coffee on Lincoln. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite) coffee shop; capitol hill; food; denver; denverite; colorado; kevinjbeaty;
Joseph Mondragon (right) works inside Drip Coffee on Lincoln. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

First of all: It was chilly in here. I did not take my coat off. Not being cold is a pretty huge part of feeling cozy.

In spite of its bland decor, Drip has a pretty nice space. The upstairs room with the half-moon window overlooking the street is very library-like. There are two couches up there but they’re pretty stiff. The chairs, at least, have cushioned seats.

The menu was pretty standard, but the food is mostly saran-wrapped breakfast sandwiches, even in the afternoon. The music while I was there was the kind of perfectly fine and inoffensive stuff you’d hear on KBCO.

Temperature: 4
Comfy seats: 4
Decor: 5
Music: 6
Menu: 5
Bonus: 0

Total score: 24

Amethyst Coffee

1111 Broadway, #101

Amethyst Coffee Co. on 11th Ave at Broadway. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite) coffee shop; capitol hill; food; denver; denverite; colorado; kevinjbeaty;
Amethyst Coffee Co. on 11th Ave at Broadway. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Amethyst’s wall of windows could be its downfall, but instead it’s one of its selling points. They manage to keep it pretty warm in there and the sunlight from the south makes the mostly white room glow. In its absence, the lighting takes care of it.

The wooden seats are good enough, comfort-wise, and there’s one particularly cozy area in the back, with a fluffy rug, a soft couch and two rocking chairs (!!!). I do appreciate that they tell you to have a seat while they make your order and then bring it to you.

Plus: I’m a big fan of any place that has a lot of plants — it keeps things homey — and I’m an even bigger fan of any patio that has a fire pit, like Amethyst’s does.

Temperature: 8
Comfy seats: 7
Decor: 9
Music: 7
Menu: 7
Bonus: +2 for the patio fire pit and liquor

Total score: 40

Looking for Pablo’s, Black Eye and Thump? They’re over here in Part I.

Ashley Dean

Author: Ashley Dean

Ashley Dean covers dining and nightlife, and other odds and ends. She previously covered music and did some copy editing for the Denver Post, the Colorado Daily and the Daily Camera. She's from New York, likes her bourbon straight and has strong opinions about Kanye West. She can be reached at adean@denverite.com, 303-502-2804 or @AshleyDean.