Who are the owners of Cranknstein and how did it get started?
Evan Rau and Susan Dalke.
Here’s how it got started Evan worked a few bike shops throughout the years and noticed two things: some bike shops are an integral part of the community where folks of all types who are into bikes get together and share their world; other bike shops are places where people go solely to shop, and primarily serve the community by offering products. In Evans experience, the two are rarely mixed. So, he began thinking about how to make a shop that could do both, and maybe even have a little something extra special. After graduating from CSU with a masters in English and awaiting the perfect teaching gig, it was time for Cranknstien to emerge.
While searching for the right real estate to house the shop, Evan started setting up booths and manning aid stations at races and charity rides. It was his dream to serve coffee and fix bikes at these events. He wanted the best locally-roasted coffee he could find, and that’s how he found Susan. He began attending weekly coffee cuppings or tastings at Susan’s roasting company, called The Black Cup Coffee Roaster at the time. These cuppings opened Evan’s mind to the complexity of coffee, and opened the door to Evan and Susan’s eventual business and personal relationship. Shortly thereafter, in April, 2011, they started chipping plaster off an old brick wall at 215 North College Avenue in Fort Collins, and began building the beast’s lair.
Cranknstein opened five months later, nearly unrecognizable as the old car dealership the building once housed, now pumping out coffee roasted in-house, craft beer from all over the planet, locally-sourced home-made food and the highest quality bike service available.
Any specials events at Cranknstein?
We hold group rides on pavement, dirt and everything in between, Firken tappings, the occasional latte art throwdown, weekly coffee cuppings (every Saturday at 11:00am).
Other beer events, and other less consistent events like: Bike Prom (a fundraiser for the FOrt COllins Bike Library), Mouthful: Gala of Gluttony (our annual beer and dessert pairing event). We are also unofficially sponsoring a bad-ass gravel ride west of Red Feather Lakes September 6th-7th that has a kind of hard loop, a really hard loop, and all ends up back at camp for grilled foods and beer, which will have been well-earned by all.
Any specialty drinks?
We’re pretty proud of the Naughty Toddy, which is a frozen coffee drink combining cold-brewed coffee (commonly known as Toddy) with Great Divide Brewing’s Yeti Russian Imperial Stout, which we always have on tap. It’s pretty great.
Favorite ride around Fort Collins.
It’s hard to pick a favorite, but I like riding out my front door near Hughes Stadium, north over Bingham Hill to Bellvue, then south on all dirt through Lory State Park, Horsetooth Mountain Park, onto the Blue Sky Trail into Devil’s Backbone in Loveland. It’s giggling fun most of the way on a cyclocross bike, but it gets gnarly in Devil’s Backbone on a single speed.
One last thing.
Our whole schtick is that we melted together a rather complex group of business elements into one alloy so that they are seamless and so we never have to compromise our standards in order to keep any component in the black. We don’t compromise on the quality of what we offer and never will. (That’s part of why we carry ya’ll’s gear.)