Now neighbors to international chain retailers such as Victoria’s Secret and H&M, Lima offers a welcome dash of local entrepreneurial creativity to the mall mix, along with quality coffee drinks with fresh-roasted beans.
Lima Coffee Roasters Owners Amanda and Diego Lima designed the modern, airy 250-square-foot bar area themselves with an emphasis on black and white color contrasts and the right angles reflecting Lima’s square logo.
Coffees making their way to the bar come from a pair of Mill City Roasters in the company’s off-site, 800-square-foot roastery in Fort Collins.
Amanda Diego told DCN this is not her first coffee job at the mall. Fifteen years ago, prior to a 2014 redevelopment of Foothills, she worked for a stretch as a barista in the location of Colorado Coffee Exchange that once operated at Foothills.
Later, she became a marketing manager for Cafe Richesse, another Fort Collins-based roasting company, where Diego Lima was the roaster at the time. Lima Coffee Roasters started roasting in 2018.
Diego Lima, who moved to the United States from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, when he was 16 years old, brings his roasting experience to the bar that bears the family name, along with some heritage in the menu.
“We offer empanadas that have been a huge hit since they are easy to carry around the mall, and are very filling,” Amanda Lima said. The food menu also includes includes additional grab-and-go options such as sandwiches, burritos, baked goods and salads. Beyond a selection of traditional espresso-based and brewed coffee drinks, the bar offers more whimsical flavored drinks such as the Upside Down Latte (a vanilla latte with caramel drizzle and espresso poured on top).
Local response to the COVID-19 pandemic did delay the shop’s opening from April until this week, and it continues to affect the shopping center’s increased safety measures. However, Lima said the roasting company has been reasonably well-positioned to handle the crisis.
“COVID-19 has actually positively impacted our business, because of the increased coffee consumption from people being at home,” said Lima. “If the mall is ordered to close due to COVID, our coffee bar would probably have to close as well, but we would make sure to keep our employees working at our roastery while it was closed.”
The company hopes to soon expand the roastery, ideally to include a cafe on site along with additional capacity for community-based coffee education and experimentation.
“We also have the goal for all of our coffees to be direct trade and [to] establish close relationships with our farmers,” said Lima. “We want to create a space where coffee is appreciated and enjoyed from bean to cup.”
Lima Coffee Roasters is open now inside Foothills, 215 E. Foothills Pkwy, Fort Collins.