Location. Peixoto Coffee is one of the best and most popular coffee shops in the state of Arizona. Their home is in Chandler, a suburb southeast of Phoenix but still considered a part of the Phoenix metropolitan area. That means it’s a little out of the way for us because we live about 2 hours northwest of Chandler. But when we’re close to being in the area (within 30 minutes or so), we’ll always go out of our way to stop in to Peixoto. It’s that good.
The parking near Peixoto isn’t that good, but recent construction is making it a little better. Depending on the time of day, you may even find parking on the street in front of the outdoor strip mall its located in. But whatever you have to do to get there, it’s worth it when you step through the doors.
The first thing that slaps you in the face is a beautiful Sanremo Opera espresso machine. I could honestly look at that thing for hours and watch the baristas pull shots all day. The baristas are so warm and friendly, that they would likely let you do it, too. The next thing that’s obvious is there is plenty of comfortable seating. Both times I’ve visited Peixoto, there were plenty of customers inside- having business meetings, working on laptops, reading novels, and just hanging out. As you scan the crowd, you see their roaster and bags of beans in the corner.
As you look at the menu for a hint of how to say their name, you see Pay-Show-Tow and you also notice the tagline- “From crop to cup.” Then it hits you. Could this really be that special kind of place where they grow the beans, roast the beans, and serve the beans in the same family business? Yes. Yes, it is. And it’s very special, even in the specialty coffee industry.
Service. So the place looks rad, they grow their own beans, and they take their coffee seriously. So that means they must employ a bunch of snooty, arrogant workers who will mock you for not knowing what a ‘cortado’ or a ‘cascara’ is, right? Nope. The first time we visited, we talked coffee for near 30 minutes with the baristas, the owners (that’s right- the actual owners), and other guests. The second time, I was stopping in on my way to Tucson, and still the baristas were awesome! These are award winning roasters, award winning servers, and the owners being humble, approachable, and fun at all times. It was incredible. When you visit a lot of cafes, you really how incredible it is to talk coffee with the owners of a shop. In short, the service was wonderful.
Coffee. As wonderful as the service was, it is matched (if not barely eclipsed) by the wonderful coffee they serve. But I can really only speak for the espresso, cortado, mocha, pour-over, and variety of whole beans I’ve tried from Peixoto. Granted, not everything on the menu. There is one quirk to take note of, though. Their whole bean coffees may not quite be what your grandma or father-in-law are looking for. They are, generally, roasted a little lighter with brighter flavors that may clash with cream and sugar, if that’s how grandma likes it. She’ll love a latte, but may not get the best experience taking the beans home and rocking a pot of Mr. Coffee with it.
Conclusion. It’s no exaggeration that Peixoto is doing something special. If you’re passing through Phoenix, try and stop. If you’re too far away, get some of their beans online. The cost is well worth the experience.