Dark Hall Coffee – Phoenix, Arizona

Written By: author image Simon Ritchie
author image Simon Ritchie

Today on CoffeeOtter, we sit down with Juan Tavarez of Dark Hall Coffee to chat about all things plant-based food and drink.

We also discuss the attention to detail he and his partner Liz went to in order to create the perfect Phoenix coffee shop, and why Ireland is on his bucket list for an amazing coffee experience.


Juan, tell us more about yourself and your journey in coffee

I am the co-owner of Dark Hall Coffee and was fascinated with coffee culture long before I became a part of it.

In 2015 I left the corporate world to open up a restaurant with my friends and this was my introduction to the food industry. We were serving baked goods and coffee but we needed more space so we opened up Dark Hall Coffee in 2018.

Dark Hall Coffee Phoenix AZ booths

So Dark Hall Coffee…what’s your place like?

We are a plant-based coffee & pastry shop, located in the Coronado Historic District in Phoenix AZ.

We handcraft all pastries in-house, all syrups are made from scratch and we also make a daily blend of house-made milk. For our espresso machines, we chose Synesso MVP & MVP Hydra. They are hand-built out of Seattle and very reliable. Plus our beans are roasted locally by Xanadu roasters.

As far as the design of our space, that was done by my partner, Liz Tavarez. The shop is dark and moody, comfortable, and has two large outdoor patios filled with vines, trees, and desert greenery. We love Phoenix and what the desert offers, but were also very inspired by coffee shops in New York, San Diego, and London.

Our goal with Dark Hall was to not cut any corners with the creation of our drinks and pastries. We wanted to show that plant-based does not have to be boring, or taste “vegan”.

Honestly, we wanted to create a coffee shop that we wanted to go to, and that’s exactly what we did!

Dark Hall Coffee Phoenix AZ drinks

I love making and drinking espresso at home

I love espresso so if you can make it at home, that’s amazing. I would just say to make “perfect” coffee at home I would read ” The World Atlas of Coffee” by James Hoffmann. Don’t do it if you don’t want to go down a rabbit hole!

What is your home coffee setup like?

I use just a basic drip coffee maker that you can find anywhere. If I have a nice single origin though I get out the Hand grinder, Hario V60, and the Acaia lunar scale. If money was no object I would definitely pick up an ES1 by Synesso. Just so I could pull shots of espresso all day.

What other Phoenix Coffee Shops are worth a visit beyond Dark Hall Coffee?

My favorites are First Place Coffee, PAIR Cupworks, Fourtillfour, Homage, Moxie, Xanadu, Skoden, and Circle K on 15th @ 2 a.m. aka the best Hazelnut Coffee in the city.

Dark Hall Coffee Phoenix AZ Inside

Where’s the best coffee shop you’ve ever visited?

That’s a tough one. If I have to choose just one I will have to base it on the total experience along with the great coffee. I think it would have to be First Place Coffee. Very creative, and meticulous in what they create, and all inside of 70’s Chevy P10… her name is Matilda.

Which coffee shops worldwide should be on every coffee fan’s bucket list?

Proper Order Coffee Co & Brew Lab Specialty Coffee Cafe in Dublin – Ireland is definitely on my list!

Dark Hall Coffee Phoenix AZ cupcakes

Is there anything else you’d like to share with our CoffeeOtter readers?

Thanks to our crew at Dark Hall Coffee for holding it down on those busy weekends. Each of them brings in a different and creative flow to the space which helps keep people coming back for more.

Let me leave you with this: It doesn’t matter what fancy machine, type of grinder, newest scales, etc… Sure it helps with the process but if you find a knowledgeable barista at your local spot who knows YOUR drink well, there is no need to venture out. Drink up. And drink local!

Where can people find Dark Hall Coffee Phoenix?

We’re at 2243 N 12th St, Phoenix, AZ 85006

Thanks so much, Juan, we can’t wait to visit you at Dark Hall Coffee again soon!

author avatar
Simon Ritchie Editor