Where to find the best cheap coffee in Denver


Let’s face it: college students are poor. It’s almost inevitable for their wallets to become thinner as the semester begins, with money slipping out of bank accounts and straight into bills, loans, and tuition.

It’s also true that students need caffeine. With long nights of homework, exam prep, and work, it’s hard to stay awake during that 11 a.m. class while trying to keep one’s head off the table.

Coffee isn’t cheap. With increasing prices and population increase, not to mention being in Downtown Denver, everything is naturally overpriced. Finding a cheap cup of Joe is hard to find. But that’s not the only thing that matters. The quality of the coffee is important, too. Why pay $6 for a small cup of decoction only to find out that it’s extremely bitter, tasteless, and downright disgraceful? Students deserve better

No need to fret, because good coffee at reasonable prices exist. Yes, in Downtown Denver. Although Starbucks is an affordable and decent option, it’s just not enough for students to get through the day.

The Sentry did some research, and found the three most affordable cafés in Downtown that give students more bang for their buck and an appropriate amount of caffeine.

First stop: The Market on 14th and Larimer. This hip and eclectic shop has been around since 1983, serving everything from liverwurst sandwiches to banana cream pie to macaroons. They’re also known for their diverse coffee bar, featuring traditional lattes and house made lemonade. For those looking for an additional boost in their day, try one of their Alcoholic coffees like the Hot Toddy. The best coffee to buy to ease into the day is a regular latte with hazelnut ($2.40).

Next stop: Leela’s European Cafe. Located on 15th St., this 24-hour eatery offers a large variety of coffee, non-alcoholic beverages, and espresso drinks. The flavors are also the most unique and distinct, including Granny Smith apple, Macadamia Nut, and Violet. Clad with an Italian Sandwich, one can easily get a full meal plus caffeine for $12 as a quick lunch. Their spiced chai with a cinnamon stick is a staple for the fall, at only $4.

Last stop: Backstage Coffee on 14th St. This cafe is a hub for concert goers, students, and tourists alike. Right next to the Buell Theatre, this cafe has an artistic vibe, with Painting classes held every now and then. Grab a croissant or slice of chocolate cake with a cup of joe, and it makes for the perfect quick pick-me-up. The Florentine, a hot chocolate blended with coffee, is a great way to slow down before the day ends ($2.60).

Good coffee is hard to come by. Good coffee that’s affordable seems almost impossible. For those without a coffee machine, or time in the morning, it’s hard to get a head start without the necessary caffeine to get through the day. For some, it takes 2-3 cups to stay awake.

Next time, leave Starbucks and explore locally owned eateries and cafés around campus. It’s not that hard to find, and they are much more effective in kickstarting any students’ day.

Photo: Korina Rojo – CU Sentry

Dilkush Khan
Latest posts by Dilkush Khan (see all)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *