I can smell the coffee brewing inside Cultivate as I walk around the block. It’s located right next to Sidetracks, on the outskirts of Depot Town. As I enter the cafe and taphouse, I immediately hear the sound of Frank Sinatra playing and see no shortage of masks being worn.
Conveniently, there were stickers on the floor indicating where to stand in order to maintain social distancing while ordering your drink. One line was for for ordering while the other line was for picking up your beverage. I ordered a seasonal drink, the Campfire Latte.
After roughly five minutes my drink was ready. On my way to sit outside in the Beer Garden, I passed through an indoor seating area with an open floor plan that was surrounded by electrical outlets. This made it the perfect place to study and work- the room was filled with people on their laptops, chipping away at their many different tasks.
While drinking my latte, I sat outside admiring the many plants within Cultivate’s garden. I also was occasionally glancing at a smiling golden retriever that was basking in the sun, soaking in the rays, just like me. It was hard to ignore the many smiling faces and all the different conversations being had. Everyone seemed to be in a nice mood. The latte was delicious and only five dollars. It contained hints of caramel and smoked sea salt. I was quite pleased, as even the caffeine content was at a perfect level.
After finishing the latte, I decided to cool off within the air conditioned space of what I call the “study hall” with a tap temperature Oktoberfest. I was in luck because I came on the weekend, so the brew was one dollar cheaper, bringing the total to only four dollars. The insides of the study hall felt very different compared to the Beer Garden. More collegiate and professional. Heads were buried in books, hands were writing and fingers were typing. It was at this moment, that I decided to write my next essay at Cultivate.
Aside from hot coffees and cold beers, Cultivate also does wonders for the local community. The staff volunteers their time to many local non-profits and encourages others to do the same. They also donate all of the produce grown in the Beer Garden to Food Gatherers, which goes to support more than 170 local agencies. Furthermore, they collect canned and boxed non-perishable food items year round. Last but not least, every single tip that is given to the staff at Cultivate goes to charity. As of this article, over $155,000 has been donated.
I can say with confidence, that if you wish to enjoy a nice beverage and support our community at the same time, you should check out Cultivate. Whether you’re there to get school work done, a project for work, or to simply get together with friends- this is the right place to do so.
Cultivate is located right outside depot town at 307 North River St., Ypsilanti.