The sky is ablaze in brilliant hues of pink and blue.

Airplanes glide by, their winglets brushing puffy, white cumulous clouds in mid air. Meditative low-fi music sets the tone, and laughter and smiles fill the vicinity with a relaxed but celebratory atmosphere.

Is this heaven?

No. It’s the Bridge Cafe at American University.

This student-run business put on a special “Head in the Clouds” five-day event during the second week of April. The Bridge offered intriguing limited-edition menu items such as a coconut Chai latte, bubbly strawberry lemonade, and even a coffee that comes with a s’more on the side.

David Gonzalez, one of the creative minds behind this production, spoke with SpoonU to reveal the process behind his innovative vision.

This conversation was edited for clarity in print.

Elliott Parrish

Q: Where did you get the idea for this amazing new theme?

A: "Well, our first theme was “Over the Garden Wall”. We had fresh drinks, a herb garden, things like that. For the second theme, we wanted the opposite of the ground. That’s the sky, right? That’s how we came up with this.

"We were in between “Dream Land” and “Space,” and so we thought we’d combine the two. The idea: if you were able to step outside the door of an airplane, this is what it would look like. That’s where the inspiration came from.

Elliott Parrish

Q: "Coconut Claire” is certainly an interesting name for a drink. Where do these names come from?

A: "All of the seniors get drinks named after them. It’s a little nice kind of nod to appreciate [them] and send them off.

We tried to kind of come up with the most creative names possible that mimic their personalities."

Q: Which new menu item has been your favorite?

A: "My personal favorite is “Tati’s Outfit of the Day”, just because black sesame is a unique flavor. We use tactivated charcoal so it looks like a storm. Then we also put activated charcoal in the whipped cream to add another layer there to it.

"It’s definitely not for everybody, but it’s one of the more interesting ones. It took a little bit more time to create."

Q: I take it today [Friday, April 15th] is already the last day of Head in the Clouds. Why such a brief run?

A: "[The event] only lasts five days just because there is so much intensive work that goes into it. We’re unable to continue a 14 drink menu on top of what we do on a daily basis.

"Also, in order to do it at the level that we want to and execute it right, it takes a lot [of work for] the staff as well. That’s why we’re only able to do it for a week."

Q: For students who missed this one, do you think the Bridge will create another special-edition menu in the future?

A: For sure. We’ll do this once a spring, but we’re hoping to do more, smaller events throughout the rest of the school year.

Definitely in the fall, around Halloween and Thanksgiving, and holiday drinks are something that we’d like to bring back as well.

Q: It would appear that you gave this week’s customers a visit to cloud nine, so to speak.

A: "That’s what we were hoping, for sure. And hopefully with these drinks, [we] set them on that path for the rest of their day."