First Taste

If You Love Cartel's Coffee, Wait Until You Try The Beer

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Almost a year later, that day has come -- Cartel has expanded into what used to be a tanning salon and Ash Ave. Comics' old location and added a bar and brewing station to accommodate the suds. We shall now refer to that expansion as "Bartel." While the Cartel-brewed beer is currently only at this location, the Scottsdale location does have a beer license, so it should be there soon, too.

The new half of the cafe is full of simple booth seating near the bar. It has two taps serving in-house brewed beer exclusively, though we hear word from brewer Matt Johnson that a third and fourth beer will be added to Cartel's repertoire in the near future. (A spicy amber rye and imperial pale ale for the curious beer nerd.)

Johnson was pulled into the mix as a friend of the business who's been home-brewing for the past decade. In that time, he learned a thing or two about IBU (international bitterness units), ABV (alcohol by volume, duh), and other beery things and brought it to Cartel. But enough background -- how's the beer?

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Heather Hoch is a music, food, and arts writer based in Tucson. She enjoys soup, scotch, Electric Light Orchestra, and walking her dog, Frodo.
Contact: Heather Hoch