The Get Down Coffee Co. café is a vibe in North Minneapolis you need to experience. This Black-owned specialty coffee company has been changing the coffee game since 2020 when the brand first launched. Now the vibe has extended to their café which is known for Friday Happy Hours, DJs, breakfast burritos (hello Quince Mpls Mkt) and so much more!
Owner Houston White is a serial entrepreneur and a multi-media brand. He owns multiple businesses located in the Twin Cities and is known for bringing culture collision wherever he goes. In addition to The Get Down Coffee Co, White is behind the Houston White x Target collection, Fresh barbershop, Camdentown Flats, and is the founder of Be The Change golf tournament.
So what is cultural collision? White describes cultural collision as bringing all types of avenues together: music, fashion, coffee, food, and more, all while learning from others and sharing resources and knowledge. White’s vision extends further than the coffee shop, and is focused on creating human connection, community, and a new sustainable neighborhood in Camdentown, his hometown in North Minneapolis.
“We are partnering with civic and corporate leaders to create a vibrant future for the Camdentown neighborhood of North Minneapolis, building a blueprint of community development done differently, for the people by the people.” (houstonwhite.co)
So why coffee? In 2020 after George Floyd’s murder, White teamed up with his friend and colleague Dan Anderson, owner of Dogwood Coffee, to build a sibling company focused on bringing diversity to specialty coffee. Their vision was to bring specialty coffee to North Minneapolis, as a way to build and keep wealth in this predominately Black neighborhood. Anderson and the Dogwood team became the “older sibling”, lending their equipment, staff, and expertise to launch The Get Down Coffee Co. Last year, The Get Down Coffee Co. opened their own roaster, and this summer they are focusing on physical space and retail expansion.
I sat down at the café with COO of The Get Down Coffee Co., Hayley Matthews-Jones, to discuss the success of the brand. She told me the reason the brand is thriving is because it operates at levels of excellence. The company partners with many organizations creating a two-way relationship, both benefiting from the other.
The mentality they try to model is “We all do better when we all do better.”
Speaking of doing better, Houston and Hayley were brought together by fashion and music and the way they complement each other. Hayley owns Minneapolis Vintage Market + Minneapolis Craft Market. After meeting Houston, they quickly became fast friends. Houston asked Hayley if she wanted to work with him full-time handling the operations of The Get Down Coffee Co. She agreed, and the rest is history.
As I sipped on my “Cranes In The Sky” (an iced strawberry vanilla latte with sweet cold foam) I immediately realized I found a hidden gem on the menu. This latte was not like anything I had ever tasted. Who knew, strawberry and coffee would go together! Hayley saw the satisfied look, and said “I know, right?”
The café is vibrant, and comforting, and is a one-in-a-million coffee shop. It features mosaics, records, Nas quotes, the freshest roasted beans for sale, each package featuring photos taken Joe Conzo, who The New York Times coined as “the man who took Hip-Hop’s baby pictures.”
So plan a date with friends/ partner/ kids at The Get Down Coffee Co., located at 1500 N 44th Ave, Minneapolis. It is relaxing and a breath of fresh air, creating the ultimate coffee vibe. Customers enjoy friendly service, a great atmosphere, and both traditional and inventive coffee beverages, with an assortment of baked goods provided by Quince Mpls Mkt. Rumor has it, in the summer, Saturday is the best day to “get down” because of the delicious breakfast burritos. Quince Mpls Mkt also makes “Aunt Jo’s Black Pepper Biscuits” available every Sunday, year long. Starting in mid-February, Jazz Sundays are going to be the new vibe!
So you know what they say… “get down on it!!