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Cupcake Royale creator launching adaptogenic mushroom coffee startup with Wunderground Cafe on Capitol Hill

(Image: CHS)

Some believe adaptogenic mushrooms reduce stress on the body and help clear the way for creative thought. If that seems useful as you start your morning, a new “mushroom coffee” cafe coming to Capitol Hill could be for you.

Capitol Hill cupcake and pot cookie entrepreneur Jody Hall is making plans to transform E Pike’s Cupcake Royale into a new flagship showcase for Wunderground, her startup coffee company dedicated to blends of beans and ground adaptogenic mushrooms like Lion’s Mane, Chaga, Reishi, and Cordyceps.

“Coffee is our creativity,” the newly launched company’s marketing begins. “Wanting to make it wunderful inspired us. We sourced beans we feel great about, grown on smallholder farms by farmers we believe in. We roasted exactly a bagazillion beans to find the perfect balance to pair with our adaptogenic mushrooms and taste incredible.”

But “helping people be creative,” the company says, will be its actual product.

Paperwork filed with the city shows plans to transform the E Pike Cupcake Royale cafe and bakeshop into a new Wunderground Cafe as a centerpiece to the new startup which has already begun online sales of its blends including Brainchild — with with Lion’s Mane and Cordyceps to provide what the company says are cognitive health benefits — and Hocus Pocus with Chaga and Reishi to purportedly boost the immune system. Other products include instant versions of the company’s blends and also mushroom-free beans.

Meanwhile, CHS is told Hall is seeking a new location nearby for a smaller Capitol Hill home for Cupcake Royale.

 

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The E Pike cafe has been the site of many happy moments including this R74 celebration of marriage equality in 2012 (Image: CHS)

The Seattle entrepreneur built the cupcake company into a citywide phenomenon after opening the E Pike location, that company’s largest, in the summer of 2009.

In 2015 as the state’s cannabis laws were relaxed, Hall made waves when she applied for a permit to sell pot. While that opportunity fell through, her efforts to create I-502 friendly edibles took off. In 2018, her Goodship startup was purchased by Seattle-based private equity firm Privateer Holdings.

Wunderground, meanwhile, is starting with even larger ambitions thanks to near $4 million in investment offerings according to federal Security and Exchange Commission filings and a branding and marketing strategy from Paper Crane Factory, an advertising firm from Seattle creative Cal McAllister.

As for E Pike’s new Wunderground headquarters, we don’t know more about timing on the underway project or a new location for the cupcake shop.

You can learn more at wundergroundcoffee.com.

 

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ISeeU
ISeeU
5 months ago

Jody is so generous to our community that even this coffee lover will give the shroom version a chance. Congrats Jody & team!

GregoryH
GregoryH
5 months ago

I hope that Wonderground will offer decaffeinated blends. Most of the adaptogen blended coffees out there are caffeinated.

Nuu
Nuu
5 months ago

I’ve played The Last of Us 2, I know how this ends

Michael Calkins
Michael Calkins
5 months ago

I am so flipping excited to check this out. Also the cupcakes they make are amazing.

RWK
RWK
5 months ago

“Adaptogenic mushrooms”? Is this product just another kind of trendy snake oil? Have there been any medical studies to show they improve cognition? Or is this all just anecdotal?

I S
I S
5 months ago
Reply to  RWK

Little to no scientific evidence for adaptogens being at all useful (though they’re probably not harmful at least?), definitely snake oil.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adaptogen

https://www.self.com/story/read-this-before-spending-money-on-adaptogens-for-stress-relief-or-anything-else

r h
r h
5 months ago
Reply to  I S

As someone who studies plasticity in the human stress response, I would definitely start from the assumption that anything that actually modulates our stress response system has significant potential to cause harm, especially if used on an ongoing basis.

CD Neighbor
CD Neighbor
5 months ago
Reply to  RWK

I don’t know about any actual effects, but people have been making reishi tea for ages… that at least it probably won’t hurt you.

Cordyceps (some recently moved to Ophiocodyceps) is truly *creepy*…. it’s the genus of fungi that lives on insects, often while they are still alive, taking over their brains for it’s own reproductive purposes… It actually creates zombies..