The Benefits of Coffee Cupping and Where to Do It in NYC
|Grinds brewing before breaking the crust to taste.|
Joe New York, multiple locations
Joe Coffee opened its first café in the West Village in what is still one of the most charming spots in the city, and it's since expanded to eight cafés in Manhattan and two in Philadelphia. Two years ago, the team opened Joe Coffee's Proshop, and this year, it began exclusively roasting its beans in Red Hook. Upcoming cuppings, usually Fridays or Saturdays every three to four weeks, are listed on the website under the classes section. They cost $25 and require sign-ups.
Stumptown, 30 West 8th Street, 347-414-7802
Lauren Mowery Kenyan Gaturiri Coffee at Stumptown.
Stumptown started in Portland, Oregon in 1999; expanded to Seattle and Los Angeles; and eventually opened a roasting operation in Red Hook as well as a café next door to the Ace Hotel (where the cool kids lounge on couches all day drinking caps, illuminated by the blue glow emanating from their Macs). The newest Stumptown café is on West 8th Street in Greenwich Village, and it hosts a number of activities in the backroom brew bar, including free cuppings at 2 p.m. on Mondays.
Think Coffee, 73 Eighth Avenue
Lauren Mowery Student breaking the crust.
Think Coffee is one of two cafés on this list that were founded in NYC (Joe is the other). Launched by a former lawyer in 2006, Think's emphasis was on living up to fair trade and sustainable ideals. The company gives 10 percent of after-tax profits to local charities and often sources its coffee directly from growers rather than relying on roasters. Think has six cafes in Manhattan; the West Village location has free cuppings at 2 p.m. on Fridays as well as various experiments and free tastings throughout the week.
Counter Culture, 376 Broome Street, 917-202-8103
Lauren Mowery Curious cuppers sniffing just brewed coffees at Counter Culture in SoHo.
Founded in Durham, North Carolina, this coffee roaster and wholesaler just opened a training center in Soho, one of seven facilities around the country. The center does not offer beans for retail nor serve as a café, but those who attend its free public cuppings on Fridays at 10 a.m. are encouraged to hang around and enjoy a proper cup of the same beans using a variety of brewing methods (last week the team made Chemex and Kalita Wave brews).
Brooklyn cuppings on the next page.