Death Valley’s Little Brother Waterloo – My Review


The Story of Death Valley

In the untamed, mountainous landscape belonging to the western state of Wyoming, where the Rocky Mountains meet the Great Plains, it is said there live creatures, part jackrabbit, part antelope, who roam the sprawling, rugged terrain, too quick to be caught by most hunters. These creatures are known as Jackalopes.

Slightly larger than a regular jackrabbit, a Jackalope is distinguished by the two antlers atop its head and by its fierce, piercing eyes. They are shy and elusive, but can also be quite dangerous. To slow them down and relax them, hunters will put out a bit of whisky, the Jackalope’s favourite drink, making them easier to catch.


Many, many decades ago, a brave Jackalope named Death Valley was the leader of his warren, and fought many battles.  Once he died, Death Valley’s little brother took over. His little brother liked whisky very much, and served it to his warren everyday. This is where our café gets its unusual name, Death Valley’s Little Brother, or DVLB.

Death Valley's Little Brother cafe exterior

Death Valley’s Little Brother

DVLB is a rustic café serving expertly made coffee, espresso drinks, whisky, and sweets. Located at 84 King Street North in Waterloo, it is open Monday-Thursday from 8am until 10pm, Friday from 8am until 12am, Saturday from 9am until 12am and Sunday from 9am until 7pm. This makes it a great spot for both an early morning scone with your coffee, and a late night rendezvous with friends.

DVLB interior

The Coffee

The coffee at DVLB is made with great care and attention to detail. The café stays closely involved with their coffee bean supplier to ensure they get the best bean. The beans are roasted in small batches in Ontario. To make the freshest, most delicious cup of coffee possible, each cup is made individually to order using the pour-over method. This method allows the most flavour to be extracted from the coffee grounds by pouring the water over the grounds slowly.

My friend and I just recently treated ourselves to an afternoon iced coffee at DVLB. The rich, flavourful coffee tasted just as good served over ice, and it was a refreshing pick-me-up for a hot day.

Two iced coffees

DVLB’s coffee blends are available to purchase in 12oz bags, so you can make your own delicious cup of coffee right in your own home! Coffee tastes so much better when you know it’s fresh, sustainable and roasted locally in small batches.

The Whisky

Just like the Jackalopes, you too can enjoy a glass of fine, single-malt whisky at DVLB. Their impressive collection includes whiskies of all regions and flavours: from smoky to delicate to rich to light, and everything in between. To find the perfect whisky that will suit your taste to a tee, you can visit their website and read up more about the various types of whisky at

DVLB whisky

Artisan Baked Goods

DVLB has teamed up with several bakeries from Toronto and KW to serve their delicious sweets and pastries in the café. Some of these bakeries include Circles & Squares, Desmond & Beatrice, Golden Hearth, Naplam Kitchen and British Pride Bakery. With all of these wonderful sources, the café offers a rotating selection of scones, tarts, squares and cookies. The pecan squares are particularly good, with small chopped pecans inside a gooey filling with a buttery shortbread crust. Their newest partner, Honey Bake Shop, will also be preparing flatbread sandwiches for the café every Thursday.

Pecan square

DVLB baked goods

An Inviting Atmosphere

The exposed brick walls and dark, weathered-looking wooden accents give the café a rustic, cosy, intimate charm. There are lots of seats inside as well as a lovely patio area outside for warm days.

Inside, the lighting is warm and dim. The café has two long, wide tables, one at the front and one at the back, which make an excellent work space for individuals. There are also many smaller tables as well as stools along the window. Best of all, tucked away in the corner are a couple of soft, squishy armchairs, making this the cosiest spot in the house.

DVLB interior

At DVLB, the details are everything. The twinkling white lights lining the wall, the big, wooden piano, the eclectic chandelier, and the beautifully painted Jackalope on the wall… all of these things contribute to a truly unique ambiance.

painting of a Jackalope

The Staff

The baristas at DVLB are kind, welcoming and accommodating. It is easy to tell that they love what they do. They do their job with skill and care, and even take the time to make little leaf designs with the foam of a hot chocolate or a latte. It’s the attention to detail that really makes this place so special.

Death Valley’s Little Brother in a nutshell

DVLB is a wonderful café for work and for friends. It sets itself apart with its unique use of the Jackalope logo and its skillfully prepared beverages. From a cup of caffeine to recharge your day, to a glass of smoky single-malt whisky to unwind, to a decadent pastry to indulge your sweet tooth, DVLB is the perfect place to go. It is always a treat.

michelle brooke bio

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