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Uptown, Edgewater, Rogers Park

Happy Monday Coffee Opens Downtown, Offering THC-Infused Drinks

Edgewater-based Happy Monday Coffee Roasters opened on Adams Street, where it serves a line of specialty coffee and "vibe-altering" drinks.

Craig Alexander and Yamel Salazar are moving Happy Monday Coffee Roasters from Kankakee to Edgewater.
Courtesy Yamel Salazar
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DOWNTOWN — A new Downtown coffee shop aims to give commuters and neighbors a caffeinated start to their day and provide a “mood-altering” drink for their afternoon or evening.

Happy Monday Coffee opened last month at 30 E. Adams St. It was launched by the owners of Happy Monday Coffee Roasters, who have a hybrid roastery and weekend cafe in Edgewater and who founded Drink Happy Thoughts in Uptown.

Business owners Craig Alexander and Yamel Salazar late last year sold Drink Happy Thoughts just as they were set to have a child. Despite selling the cafe, the couple wanted to expand the Happy Monday brand, Salazar said.

That opportunity presented itself with the Adams Street location, which previously housed a coffee shop.

“We always wanted to expand the brand if things were right,” Salazar said. “We came across this opportunity and decided to go for it.”

Credit: Courtesy Happy Monday Coffee Roasters
Happy Monday Coffee opened its Loop cafe in early June.

RELATED: Happy Monday Coffee Roasters Moving To Edgewater From Kankakee, With Plans For New Cafe

Happy Monday Coffee has similarities to Drink Happy Thoughts, including a menu full of creative coffee drinks. It also serves pastries, breakfast bowls and empanadas.

But there are additions to the business model, including the ability to add THC to any drink.

THC is the active chemical in cannabis that delivers users the psychoactive effect. Happy Monday Coffee serves THC-8, which is less potent than the chemical THC-9 and provides a sense of euphoria and pain relief, according to The New York Times.

Like recreational cannabis, THC-8 is legal in Illinois and is used at restaurants and cafes, although some legislators are seeking more regulations.

Happy Monday Coffee also serves kava drinks, made from a South Pacific plant long used in local medicines and increasingly popular as an anxiety-reducing herbal remedy. The kava and THC drinks are for those 18 and older.

Salazar called the offerings “mood- and vibe-altering drinks.”

“It’s been very popular with customers,” she said.

Other menu items include the Bee Sting (chili-infused honey, espresso, choice of milk and cinnamon), the Cocomint Coldbrew (muddled fresh mint simple syrup, coconut milk and cold brew) and Fudgsicle Mocha (mocha latte with a floating Fudgsicle).

Credit: Courtesy Happy Monday Coffee Roasters
Happy Monday Coffee seeks to provide a vacation-like vibe in its new Loop cafe.

Happy Monday Coffee is on the first floor of a residential high-rise in a space that previously housed Heritage Cafe.

The cafe includes a seating area and space for Happy Monday to sell its coffee beans. Its light and airy design — combined with its creative drinks — is meant to evoke the feeling of being on vacation, even if you are just grabbing a drink on the go.

Happy Monday has held live music and plans to do so on a regular basis, Salazar said.

“Our main goal is to provide that good feeling when you walk into the shop,” she said. “That feeling like you’re on vacation.”

Happy Monday Coffee is open 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday-Sunday. For more information on the business, click here.

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