brew tulum specialty coffee experience photo by michelle volansky

Brew Tulum Specialty Coffee Experience is open now in St. Louis

Brew Tulum Specialty Coffee Experience is bringing a fresh, bohemian breeze to St. Louis with specialty roasted coffee that celebrates both traditional Mexican practices and unique innovations. With roots in Tulum, Mexico, the coffee shop opened a second location this fall at 5090 Delmar Blvd. in St. Louis.

Owner Laura McNamara’s passion and knowledge of coffee is clear, and she hopes to share this passion by “introducing people to specialty coffee so people can notice all the different notes and flavors on the palate.” 

Brew Tulum identifies with the third wave coffee movement, focusing on quality in every step of the process: from sourcing authentic Mexican specialty-grade organic coffee to roasting the coffee in a local St. Louis roasting facility – First Crack Coffee – so that coffee is always served fresh. Brew Tulum’s coffee selection integrates both the old and the new. Their rendition of Mexico’s iconic café de olla nods to its long and significant history while adding a twist of their own by substituting cardamom for the traditional clove. McNamara also highlights creations such as the Coconut Coffee Dream and citrus zest cold brew. Flavored with natural ingredients and brewed with a multitude of extraction methods, every item from their extensive drink menu is carefully crafted to create a rich, complex cup.

In addition to coffee and drinks, Brew Tulum also serves breakfast, ranging from more authentic Mexican breakfast items such as chilaquiles and tamales, to more trendy favorites such as avocado toast and overnight oats. This range is heavily influenced by their location in Tulum, which opened in 2018 and attracts tourists from all over the world – an international presence which has integrated into the surrounding Mexican culture.

McNamara was born and raised in St. Charles, but left to pursue a career in journalism and photography that took her all over the world. Her travels in Vietnam and Guatemala piqued her initial interest in coffee, and after settling in Mexico with her husband Alberto Juarez, who owns the Mexico location and consulted on the St. Louis location, they began building their coffee business. “As a traveler, coffee shops tend to be what you gravitate to in a new place. They’re natural social catalysts in that they get people to interact and engage with each other,” McNamara said. Inspired by her own identity as a traveler, McNamara has aspired to create a space for travelers to gather and feel comfortable in both Brew Tulum locations.

With Mexico being the one of the top exporters of specialty grade organic coffee, Brew Tulum focuses on Mexican coffee; however, McNamara still hopes to introduce customers to the wide range of coffee across the world. “Coffee tastings are our way to allow people to do back-to-back tastings and discover the nuances [of coffee],” says McNamara. Brew Tulum’s coffee tastings are an hour to an hour and a half experience where customers can sample coffees from different regions with varying brew methods and roast levels to see how the subtle changes can impact the taste. You can book a tasting experience on the website and there is no minimum number of attendees.

The tropical-feeling space is roughly 1,700 square feet with just over 30 seats. There’s a small patio out front and next year will see an additional patio beside the coffee shop.

Brew Tulum is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday.