brewhemia coffee

Restaurant of the Week: Brewhemia

Family-owned Brewhemia is located in the heart of Newbo district in Cedar Rapids. A play on “New Bohemia,” beverage-centric Brewhemia is one of the coolest breakfast and lunch spots in town.

Opened in 2014 in the CSPS building, Brewhemia has grown into a staple coffee shop in the area, all thanks to co-owners Steve and Andrea Shriver and Matt Danielson. In 2016, the café and bar moved to its current location after the building was completely renovated after a fire. This new location allowed for a bigger kitchen and seating area.

If you are on the hunt for a spot to get some work done, Brewhemia should be on your list. Perfect for work meetings, coffee dates or brunch/lunch, Brewhemia has a menu that will appease your appetite or caffeine needs. Because of its ideal location, Brewhemia is walking distance from many shops, including a community staple, Newbo City Market. Grab a drink to-go and walk around the lively Newbo area or in the warmer months, pick a table outside to enjoy the weather.

The inside aesthetic is classic-meets-hipster, with some traditional elements that leave a historic feel to the space. The exposed brick, penny-tiled floors and historic ceilings make for the perfect cozy day vibes. The vast amount of windows allow for plenty of sunshine and a nice view of the Newbo area.

Although any drink on their menu will be top notch, a few must-tries are the Bohemian and the Dirty Chai. The Bohemian is an undiluted cold brew, with whole milk, heavy cream and vanilla. This classic drink is well-balanced between the cream and coffee and is a staple drink year-round. The Dirty Chai is a traditional chai latte with a shot of espresso. The subtle spices, including cinnamon, pair nicely with the hint of coffee. The frothy top makes for those Instagram-worthy moments.

Brewhemia’s breakfast burrito is possibly one of the greatest breakfast burritos to ever live. This a.m. staple was featured on the Food Network for “Best Burrito”—and we agree. This burrito is easily customizable and always comes with eggs, refried beans and cheese, and topped with sour cream. Add-ons include veggies, sausage, chorizo, bacon, steak, ham and potatoes. A personal favorite is with steak, bacon, red and green peppers and onions. Packed with flavor, the tender steak is finely chopped and the peppers and onions give a nice color and crunch. This sturdy burrito is seared to perfection and comes with a side of smoked chipotle hot sauce and green tomatillo sauce for all of your dipping needs. This burrito can easily be shared with a friend…or not. No judgement here.

A good lunch choice is definitely the deluxe chicken sandwich. This sandwich includes grilled chicken, tomato, lettuce, avocado, mayo and pickled jalapeno, served on lightly buttered and toasted bread. The thinly sliced chicken breast is juicy and well-seasoned. This light and refreshing sandwich has a good combination of crunch from the lettuce and creaminess from the avocado. On the side you’ll find chips and the chipotle sauce, which adds a kick of smokiness to the dish.

Brewhemia uses many local products in its dishes, including milk from Hansen’s Dairy in Waterloo, mushrooms from Midwest Mushrooms in Hiawatha, and coffee from Raw Street in Tama and Wonder State in Wisconsin. Something you won’t get anywhere else is their cold brew, which is made in-house from a special blend of beans. Another note-worthy feature of Brewhemia is its build-your-own options – anything from the burritos, bowls or wraps can be crafted to order. Have dietary restrictions? Not a problem for the staff at Brewhemia, as they can adjust almost any dish to fit your needs, including gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian.

Brewhemia is open Tuesday through Sunday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. There is currently no seating available inside; however, the Olympic South Side Theater is located directly above Brewhemia and open for socially distanced indoor seating options, with complimentary WiFi. You can also place to-go orders, which are seamless and allow for contactless pickup.

For more information about Brewhemia, visit

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