Gold Sprint Coffee: A Huntsville Treasure


Gold Sprint is one of many newer coffee hot spots in Huntsville.

Brady Jordan

 The rapid growth of Huntsville has manifested in many ways: heavy traffic, new restaurants and coffee shops suited to different niches. Around the time I left the city, I would have recommended the centrally-located Honest Coffee Roasters or the Campus 805-based Offbeat Coffee and Records. Nowadays, my recommendation would be drastically different with all of the new market options. My new go-to is located around the corner from Lowe Mill Arts and Entertainment: enter Gold Sprint Coffee. 

Coffee is a critical part of any culture. Coffee shops are perhaps the most versatile meeting place in modern society. When you enter one, you’re likely to find everyone from the dedicated college student, to old friends meeting up for the first time in years. I often say that there is a direct connection between the growth of a community and the amount of coffee shops in the surrounding area. This could not be more true for Huntsville, Ala. 

The “Rocket City” is now the largest city in the state according to the 2020 census, and hosts an unprecedented amount of economic and cultural growth. Having spent most of my adolescence in Huntsville, I often grabbed cups of joe with friends downtown. 

Gold Sprint is unlike any other I’ve ever been to, and it contains the perfect marriage of bicycles, espresso and local art. The shop opened in December of 2019. Its mission was to create a community-friendly space easy for anyone to ride their bikes to. 

The vision for Gold Sprint started with Victor Burlingame, a local artist, entrepreneur, barista and avid cyclist. Burlingame had the idea to create a friendly community gathering space for his cycling friends to connect over coffee.

 “I had worked at coffee shops through the years, but also, cycling was a big influence,” Burlingame said. “The name Gold Sprint is a bicycle race–basically messengers would go to a bar and have indoor races. We just wanted to be kind of the neighborhood coffee shop where people would come and hang out.” 

The coffee itself is provided by Domestique, a roastery out of Birmingham, Ala. Gold Sprint offers a wide variety of specialty and seasonal drinks while not making any compromises on the basics. It also serves a variety of other beverages and food. For non-coffee drinkers, craft beers and breakfast items enhance the menu. 

Burlingame recommended the Haitian Nitro drink – which happens to be my recent go-to as well as – a great pick. 

“If you want just straight-up, smooth black coffee that’s hard to beat,” Burlingame said. “It’s refreshing.” 

The COVID-19 pandemic presented new challenges after the shop’s first few months open.

“We’ve actually been open longer during COVID than before,” Burlingame said. 

Throughout the pandemic, Gold Sprint has stayed open for business while going above and beyond in respect to customer health and safety. Prior to the release of COVID-19 vaccines, the shop required masks and allotted plenty of space for social distancing. 

The shop has even managed to expand in the midst of the pandemic, opening an additional room which also serves as a music venue for local bands. 

Gold Spirit encourages Huntsville’s vibrant art community to display their work and produce more content. It also hosted an arts show for the local Huntsville Collective group and showcased the work of several prominent local photographers and artists.