The first thing you’ll notice when you walk in the door of Urban Standard (besides the incredible coffee aromas) is the character. Antiques of all kinds make up the unique décor, and the aged brick walls feel as if you’ve stepped through a time warp and arrived in a café of a long-forgotten era.
The original idea when Urban Standard began was to open a workshop/gallery where visitors could see the work of Polish artist Tomek Wrzesien (owner) along with the works of other local artists. That idea creatively morphed into a coffee café that features a mouth-watering menu and coffee worth bragging about.
The definitive Euro-American personality of the place is reflective of Tomek’s upbringing in Poland. The hanging cage lights and wooden tables invite visitors to order up their favorite brew and stay a while. It is the perfect atmosphere to inspire creative thinkers, refresh business professionals and start conversation among friends.
Nestled in the blossoming area of downtown Birmingham, Urban Standard makes a statement with mix-matched tables and chairs and walls lined with unique artwork expression. Don’t be surprised to find yourself among bird cages one visit, statues and wooden barrels the next as the ever-changing interior transforms. Much of the artwork is for sale, so you can browse for new home accents while you sip your Americano.
Urban Standard is known for their salad, sandwiches and sweets. Patrons rave over the chicken salad, Reuben sandwich and strawberry cupcakes. Much of the menu comes from family recipes and provides many delectable choices to satisfy your appetite. Try the Hippie Gumbo made up of seared tofu and okra with a steaming serving of brown rice. The grilled chicken panino will become an instant favorite with the smoked bacon and caramelized onions and balsamic jam. The Urban Hummus is loaded with mixed greens, Kalamata olives and is served with plenty of pita chips. The shining star, however, is the Counter Culture coffee, lovingly served in ceramic coffee cups accented with perfect latte art.
The location is lovely, nestled in the heart of the city’s center. Take your cappuccino outside to sit at one of the tables lining the sidewalk. Let it warm your hands and belly as you watch the passersby browsing the downtown shops or hustling on work errands. In the summer, try an iced coffee for a sweet way to beat Alabama’s brutal heat.
Considered by many to be the best coffee and breakfast place, Urban Standard is a jewel tucked in Birmingham’s historic downtown and is a great choice for a relaxing meal and quality cup of joe.