Handlebar Café, Nantucket
June 7, 2023
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The Handlebar Café’s name is emblematic of its origins. The cafeteria was established in 2014 by Jason and Courtney Bridges, who had founded bike rental and town guide service Nantucket Bike Tours three years prior. The cafeteria was established to merge productivity, comfort, and social experience in the same location centered around a cup of good coffee.

The café is run by Yulia E., who joined as a full-time barista when she moved to Nantucket in 2017. The staff comprises young, cheery personnel who offer swift and personable customer service.

The Cafe’ is open all week, year-round, from 7 a.m and closes at 4 p.m with varied holiday schedules.

Premises

The Handlebar Cafe is conveniently situated on Washington Street, across from the Wave Depot in Downtown Nantucket. The premise is easily accessible via foot or wheels. Customers arriving in cars can find roadside parking spaces, while pedalers will find bike slots outside the café building. Customers in wheelchairs can also access the café with no hassle.

Customers accessing the café from Main Street will arrive in virtually no time during off-peak traffic hours.

A Handlebar-Café-branded vintage blue pickup adorns the premise’s parking area, a prelude to the café’s traditional theme inside. The premise features a walk-in café with upper deck seating. The exterior features extra tables at the front and a secret garden at the back.

Sitting is suited for different types of customers, from those looking for comfort, productivity, hangouts, or just visiting for a simple cup of coffee. Its interior has small and large coffee tables and cozy couches, while the exterior features metal & wooden tables, chairs and wooden benches.

The café is equally pet-friendly. The front porch features a unique, thoughtful staircase-styled bark bar where dogs of different sizes can quench their thirst.

The cycling concept is evident everywhere in the café. From the bike slots outside, the road bike hung on the partition above the café counter’s entrance, bicycle-branded t-shirts, bicycle wall art, and miniature bicycle figurines on the tables, you would be forgiven for thinking the café is a cyclists’ hangout.

Products

The Handlebar Café’s menu contains an array of beverages brewed in the coffee shop. The menu on the counter wall lists the drinks along with prices.

A useful graphic labeled “Espresso Drinks 101” is also hung on the wall with a visual explainer of the ingredients and ratios that go into Cappuccino, Macchiato, Americano, and Mocha Latte cups.

Beverages are served in either ceramic mugs or paper mugs with straws. Customers can choose where to have dairy, almond, or soy milk in their beverages.

The Nitro Cold Brew is the café’s signature coffee. It is a creamy, foamy, nitrogen-infused coffee served with ice. Other beverages on the menu include hot chocolate, Chai Latte, Cortado, Cup of Sunshine, Oat Vanilla Latte, Matcha Latte, and more. Handlebar Café partners with Compass Coffee to brew and serve the processor’s coffee.

Tasty pastries, mainly cakes, are displayed on the café counter and are a good accompaniment to the beverages. In addition to beverages and pastries, the Handlebar Café sells merchandise displayed in the building, including branded mugs and t-shirts.

Amenities/Activities

The café provides free Wi-Fi within its premises. The duo of the internet and a work-style environment mvake the Handlebar Café a productivity hub.

Avid readers will find dozens of popular and new entrepreneurial and personal development books on the café’s bookshelves adjacent to the staircase.

Photos of Nantucket are peg-hung on lines on the counter’s front wall and are a good pastime for visitors to view beautiful pictures taken on the island. Additional photos are hung on the side of the wall adjacent to the front door.

Moreover, customers can play fun games, including chess, while enjoying their beverage.

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