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Slow Burn Coffee thriving on collaboration

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — It’s been anything but slow since Slow Burn Coffee opened its doors in October.

The coffee shop at 821 Mountain NW has not only been serving up craft coffee and roasting its own beans in the last several months, but has also collaborated with other local coffee shops and breweries.

Jointly owned by Sister Bar owner Jesus Zamora and former Prismatic Coffee owner Grey Smith, Slow Burn was born from collaboration.

“I really thought the quality of coffee that Grey was producing was spectacular and I felt like it was something I could get behind,” Zamora said.

Zamora said Smith approached him and asked if he would like to become an owner of Prismatic, but ultimately the duo decided in early 2019 to create an entirely new brand.

Slow Burn Coffee, at 821 Mountain NW, opened Oct. 10. (Courtesy of Slow Burn Coffee)

“The coffee quality is on the same level, but I really wanted to kind of make Slow Burn a bigger space,” Zamora said. “A little bit more community-focused.”

Zamora said he wanted to have the coffee shop embrace New Mexican culture by helping “retain what makes New Mexico unique.”

Slow Burn Coffee, which opened to the public in October at 821 Mountain NW, roasts its own coffee which is sourced from small farms. The business offers its roasts for wholesale and has collaborated with other local coffee shops and breweries for coffee-infused beer.

This is reflected in a menu that includes red chile chai and empanadas, and in the shop itself, which is housed in a nearly 100-year-old building.

Although coronavirus health restrictions have limited the number of customers able to dine on site, Zamora said he is hoping that the shop will be able to turn into a “community hub.”

“We’ve really settled in at this point and I feel like the neighborhood’s really embraced us and it’s been really cool,” he said.

Slow Burn Coffee staff work behind the counter. The recently opened coffee shop features a drink menu with a New Mexican twist like red chile infused chai.

Like Prismatic, Slow Burn roasts its own coffee, which is sourced from small farms.

“We’re willing to go that extra mile and spend that extra money on sourcing the best coffee we can,” he said.

As a wholesale roaster, coffee beans roasted at Slow Burn can be found at other coffee shops or even in some local beers.

Zamora said the coffee shop has already collaborated with breweries like the recently opened Gravity Bound Brewing and Bow and Arrow Brewing Co. and food trucks.

“I love being an active part of the community and organizing events and collaborations,” he said. “It makes the job more fun.”

Goodman development

Another mixed-use development is in the works for the Winrock Town Center developers Goodman Realty Group, according to the company.

The new development, which will be located at Rio Bravo SW and Poco Loco SW, will include office and industrial spaces as well as spots for other retailers, according to Scott Goodman, Goodman Realty Group vice president.

Goodman said the company is selling three of the pads on the site, with two of those already planned to be used by national retailers.

“This development is exciting because it provides a truly mixed-use environment in the South Valley while creating jobs and economic development,” Goodman said in an email announcing the planned development.

The currently vacant lot is located in an area surrounded by homes and apartments and has great access from major roadways, he said.

Construction will begin early this year.

While Goodman was unable to announce which retailers have deals to open up locations on the property, he said one is a fast food restaurant and the other is a national dollar store.

Aside from mixed-use developments, Goodman Realty will also be continuing to pursue industrial developments like the planned conversion of the former Cinemark Movies 8 and iT’Z buildings at Montgomery Plaza into industrial use buildings this year.

Goodman announced plans to turn Montgomery Plaza into an industrial use park in July and in December he announced that the former Movies 8 building at 4591 San Mateo NE was purchased by international environmental hotel supplier Green Suites Hotel Solutions.

“We had multiple offers on the Movies 8 building,” Goodman said. “One of the reasons we picked to work with Dan Bornholdt at Green Suites was due to the shared environmental mission both of our companies share.”

The company provides environmentally friendly cleaning solutions to hotels in every state and in 40 different counties, he said.

The future tenant of the iT’Z building has yet to be announced.

Goodman estimates that the entire project will cost between $20 million to $25 million dollars to convert the buildings and shopping centers into an industrial use park.

Construction on the Movies 8 building is set to start this spring with construction on the iT’Z building to begin in the fall, he said. Construction should be completed within a year for each building.

Pilar Martinez covers retail and commercial real estate for the Journal. You can reach her at or by phone at 505-823-3887.


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