It’s the end of an era for East Dallas coffee drinkers, with sad closing news coming from Lower Greenville.
Mudsmith is closing its original location Sunday, Oct. 6, after eight years at 2114 Greenville Ave. It was one of Dallas’ first independent coffee shops that served as a hub in East Dallas since 2012. Since then, many more lattes have sprung up and down on Greenville, but Mudsmith still held a place of its own.
“It’s my favorite spot I have ever built, but, sadly, it’s just life in the big city,” says owner Brooke Humphries. “Things come and go. We put in eight really good years here.”
And East Dallas loved her for it. Mudsmith is known for its casual, laid-back vibe where wild-game mounts are hung alongside artwork and communal tables. It’s popular among freelancers and bookworms, sketch pads and work-from-home types.
Mudsmith has a wide coffee menu, including specialty lattes, cortados and an excellent classic drip coffee, as well as eight draft beers. The spot has reliable and consistent hours, open early and late seven days a week.
Mudsmith was the fourth concept Humphries launched in Dallas, following successful joints such as disco hall Beauty Bar, which is now in Deep Ellum, underground dance club It’ll Do and arcade-bar mashup Barcadia, which recently sold. She also owns Mama Tried Honky Tonk in Deep Ellum and the Pints & Quarts burger joint, formerly on Lowest Greenville, now in Oak Lawn.
Humphries brought the idea of Mudsmith back from her travels to New York City in 2010. It was there she fell in love with coffee shops that had a real sense of character. She made something totally her own.
When Mudsmith opened in 2012, Starbucks and drive-thru coffee shops proliferated the scene. Humphries proved how wildly popular an independent coffee shop could be in Dallas.
“Back in 2012, Dallas wasn’t doing big seating in coffee shops. I took a risk on this spot on Lower Greenville and have been so blessed,” Humphries says. “There wasn’t a whole lot of private coffee shops. Eight years is a long time in Dallas.”
But the reason for its success was also its demise. A coffee shop at the end of its lease taking up as much space as many restaurants do didn’t have a foreseeable path forward.
“It’s increasingly hard to have that much square footage for coffee,” Humphries says.
Although Humphries is calling it quits on Greenville, Mudsmith is still growing.
She’s currently expanding her second location of the coffee shop at The Centrum office and residential tower in Oak Lawn. There will also be a Mudsmith location in Trophy Club. In fact, furniture and decor from Lower Greenville are being packed up and moved there.
Lower Greenville is a neighborhood seemingly always in flux. In 2019 alone, there have been numerous closings, from Transit Bicycle Company to Rocko’s Pizza Lounge and Stiky Ribz BBQ, short-lived concepts from Dallas’ far-flung suburbs. Blind Butcher closed in mid-2018, as did Don Chingon, saying sayonara after just a year.
But exciting restaurants and bars have joined the ranks on Greenville Avenue. Alamo Club took over the Blind Butcher spot, the new bar Eastside Social took over Nora’s restaurant and rooftop. Plus, a new Tiki bar called Swizzle Luau Lounge is on its way next door to Wabi House.
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A restaurant tenant is the most likely replacement for Mudsmith, Humphries says.
But Greenville Avenue won’t be the same without Mudsmith for its fiercely loyal patrons.
However, Lower Greenville is not short on coffee shops. Toasted occupies a space at Greenville and Ross avenues. LaLaLand Kind Coffee’s mission-driven shop has been a neighborhood favorite since opening earlier this year on Bell Avenue, just off Greenville. In nearly every entertainment-oriented neighborhood, you can find one or two local coffee shops.
“There are some really great shops in Dallas right now,” Humphries says. “We’re definitely leaving everything in good hands. Dallas is not lacking for great coffee.”