This weekend, Bridgeport welcomes a new member of the business community – Jackalope Coffee & Tea. Jackalope is one of only two coffee shops in the Bridgeport neighborhood, but is like no other coffee shop you will find anywhere. Instead of depressing elevator music and Jack Johnson on the radio like you would find in just about any coffee shop, Jackalope plays everything from Mississippi John Hurt to Social Distortion, and even some occasional metal. Guests are welcome to request any band they want to listen to. Most coffee shops are also usually full of yuppies hacking away on their Macbooks and mooching off the free wifi, which is ironic because I am sitting in Jackalope right now writing this post from a Macbook while mooching off the free wifi. Jackalope is full of regular people. All are welcome, and there is a real sense of community here, much like the Bridgeport neighborhood.
What makes Jackalope even more unique is the decor. Owners John and January are both musicians who love rock, metal and alternative music. With that being said, most of the decorations in Jackalope are ones you would see at rock joints like Reggie’s Rock Club, which both of them frequent often and have performed at.
Sugar skulls are found all over the interior of Jackalope. A few random bats hang from ceilings and walls. Portraits and paintings adorn the walls, which exemplify the style of Bridgeport’s ever-growing counterculture. The environment, people, music, and decorations here make it the only coffee shop I have ever found enjoyable to hang out at. It’s a fun place to hang out at. Instead of walking into a depressing, droned out coffee shop, Jackalope is very lively. Thank you Jackalope for breaking the common coffee shop stereotype.
Owners John and January wanted to create a bigger sense of community in Bridgeport, and Jackalope does just that. They have plans to eventually have a full menu of sandwiches, soups and salads. Since Jackalope is also zoned for a music venue, they may open it up for live music in the near future. They also plan to expand their line of coffees and teas as well, and offer drip coffees. They currently offer Metropolis coffees, loose leaf Rishi teas, Filbert’s soda, and a whole bunch of those weird frozen coffee drinks people seem to love. I personally don’t drink coffee for health reasons, but the other customers seem to love the coffee here. However, I have sampled several of their excellent loose leaf teas. My favorites so far include the chamomile, yerba mate, and jasmine teas. The chamomile tea is the best I have ever had of its kind.
One of my favorite parts about Jackalope is all the baked goods from Bridgeport Bakery. Of course, they have all the common baked goods found in coffee shops like doughnuts, muffins, and brownies. But when stopping at Jackalope, you must grab a bacon bun and a ham & cheese bun. They are to-die-for. Perfect for grabbing a hot snack on-the-go before hopping on the CTA #8 Halsted St bus.
Be sure to like Jackalope on Facebook for specials and events.