Late for the Train, located far away from the downtown traffic and crowds, has been my favorite coffee shop experience, thus far, amongst the multitude of options available in the Flagstaff area.
The friendly service, quality espresso drinks, unique atmosphere (in a converted gas station), and nice location (on the way to the Snowbowl, many hikes, and the Grand Canyon) make it a great choice for locals and travelers alike.
Our Americano drinks were rich and smooth and served in cool glass mugs. I am glad that they had mugs available as opposed to just paper cups, like a few of my recent coffee shop experiences.
At Late for the Train you can order from a full menu of specialty drinks including the usuals like Cappuccinos, lattees, and mochas. Non dairy milk alternatives are available. They even carry a special pumpkin spice blend all year, so you don't have to wait to the fall season to order your favorite Pumpkin Spice Latte.
Prices are a bit steep (as has been the case in almost all of Flagstaff) - $2 for a small Americano plus a $1 for an extra shot of espresso (which was needed as the 12oz only contained 1 shot).
In addition to drinks, a few treats (including gluten-free and vegan selections) are available. The only real entrees are microwaveable breakfast burritos, which we unfortunately did not get to test out as they were out of the gluten-free options.
Service was much friendlier and more relaxed than all the coffee shops I've visited downtown. It still wasn't the ask about your day, personalized service type shop (which unfortunately doesn't exist in this area), but decently friendly nonetheless. And we did not feel rushed in anyway while ordering or enjoying our drinks.
Unlike many of the bland, overcrowded, overhyped coffee shops in Flagstaff's popular downtown, Late for the Train (on Fort Valley Road) offers an eclectic setting in a gas station from the 60's. The setting is relaxing and not overly congested making it a perfect stop post activity or for a casual meetup with friends.
The music is just loud enough to enjoy, yet not overpowering. They sell some food, but not enough to draw large crowds. There is not much seating available, however, it wasn't overly crowded, so we easily found a table.
The old steel and glass used to build the old station still remains, along with a few wood accents to give it a mountain feeling. Although the original gas pumps are gone, the pump canopy still stands today, and is used as an outdoor seating area.
In my opinion, the best aspect of Late for the Train is the large windows with views of the beautiful pines and aspens. For some reason, most restaurants & cafes in the Flagstaff area do not take advantage of the beautiful surroundings. Who wants to look at another building - I'd rather look at the beautiful trees!
Late for the Train also has its' own parking lot so you do not have to search for a spot. I like the fact that the business stands on its' own, surrounded by the trees, as opposed to being located in a noisy strip mall. It's a nice quiet area without much traffic noise or other businesses.
As another advantage, Late for the Train's location on Hwy 180 makes it a convenient stop for those making their way to numerous popular attractions including the Snowbowl, Snowbowl area hiking trails, and the Grand Canyon.
Late for the Train has 3 locations including one downtown, however, coffee is roasted at the Fort Valley location and the setting is much, much nicer.
Late for the Train, although a convenient stop on the way to the Snowbowl or Grand Canyon, is also the best local choice for relaxing with an excellent espresso drink.