Oregon: Bend – Riff Taproom (Review)

When is a coffee shop not a coffee shop? When it is Riff! 

Location: Hours: Website:
555 NW Arizona Ave Suite 30, Bend, OR 97703                          T: (541) 312-9330
Mon – Fri: 10 am to 8 pm          Sat – Sun: 8 am to 8 pm
www.riffcoldbrewed.com

Bend, Oregon is a popular all-year destination for those who love the great outdoors with it ski resort, mountain bike trails, white water rafting, fishing and golf courses. A significant service industry has sprung up in the town to cater for the visitors and growing number of people who call this home. The tourism industry has also enabled the city to develop a large community of craft breweries to spring up – a total of 32 in Central Oregon and counting. So, this mean there are lots of pubs and taprooms to chose from!

Now obviously not all pubs and tap rooms are the same but they have that one central ingredient – beer (or cider!). I was very pleased when I heard about a new tap room coming to town – mainly because it doesn’t serve beer. This is not because I am teetotal but variety is important to me.
Riff Taproom specializes in cold brew coffee. Yes coffee. This is not your run-of-the-mill ice coffee this is slowly brewed coffee (the brew is steeped for 15 hours) and the result is smooth, non-acidic and gorgeous. They serve this cold brew infused and treated with many different flavors. If like us on our first trip you can’t make up your mind you can order a sample flight of four different brews. If don’t fancy cold brew you can always stick to beer, wine or cocktails. They have also cleverly positioned themselves away from being a traditional coffee shop. They don’t open at 5 am so you can pick up your coffee on the way to work and then close at 5 pm. Riff opens at 10 am during the week and closes at 8 pm and they cold brew is served in glasses not mugs.
The most striking thing about Riff is the space. It is located a former box factory alongside several other bars, cafes and interesting shops. This is an area of Bend that is undergoing a transformation from industrial mess to urban chic. The room is extremely light with modern fitting, but the it is the use of bright bold colors that makes everything pop. In fact the first thing that hits you as you walk through the door is an incredible mural on the wall behind the serving counter – it is a real explosion of vivid colors!.
The use of colors extends from the walls to the menu. Being vegans we find vegan food in many places can be hit or miss, especially in the presentation. Not in the case of Riff. We selected three dishes (one was not vegan – for our daughter) and they were all totally delicious and very well presented (with lots of color).
So, if you are in Central Oregon I would recommend that you try Riff – especially if you are experimental and would like to explore something a little different!

 

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