Several established local roasters have been building out new storefronts this month, giving third-wave coffee drinkers plenty of new neighborhood options going into November.
3260 Adams Avenue, Normal Heights
Dark Horse Coffee Roasters is just about set to open a coffee bar in North Park, sharing a wall with gastropub Waypoint Public. Like its original Normal Heights shop, this Dark Horse satellite will sell beans and serve Hario v60 pour-overs, along with cold brew and French press. It will also add espressos to the Dark Horse menu.
Right now they’re looking at a late-October opening, just waiting on a custom-built counter to be finished. Many of the new San Diego coffee entrepreneurs I’ve spoken to in the past few months have mentioned roaster Daniel Charlson as an encouraging influence, so I’ll definitely be keeping up with this new shop as well as his plans to expand his roasting operations to Golden Hill.
5839 Mission Gorge Road, Suite D, Grantville
The West Bean, which roasts in Mission Gorge, plans to open its first retail shop in mid- to late-November at 240 Broadway, in front of the Westgate Hotel. Roasters James Rauh and Andrew Karr originally hail from Portland and Seattle, respectively, but have been cooking beans here since 2009 and wholesaling to a growing list of coffee shops and restaurant clients.
This indoor/outdoor location will feature two roasts at a time, giving customers the option to try a brighter, fruitier coffee (think Ethiopian), or something along the lines of a Guatemalan bean for those who prefer something more chocolaty.
The West Bean shop will be making Aeropress drinks and Kalita Wave pour-overs. The Kalita pour-over system differs the Hario in that its cone has a flat bottom with three tiny holes, meant to control the pace of the drip for what its Japanese manufacturer calls an “even extraction” that’s less dependent on precision timing and pours than a v60, which features a pointed cone and a single, large opening.
The Aeropress offers an ingeniously simple design that synthesizes the process of a French press and espresso machine. The syringe-like device steeps fine grounds in a tube of hot water, then uses a gasket-sealed piston to pressurize the tube, forcing the water through a disc-shaped filter, resulting in richly concentrated, espresso-like shots.
5627 La Jolla Boulevard, La Jolla
Bird Rock Coffee Roasters aims to officially open its new Little Italy storefront (2311 Kettner Boulevard) November 3, though it plans to soft-open in time to host the latest round of San Diego Coffee Network’s ongoing Thursday Night Throwdown, October 23 at 7 p.m. The TNT latte art competition features coffee pros from around and beyond Southern California competing for a cash prize based on their coffee preparation and foam decorating skills.
The network says the last TNT drew 44 competitors. Between the recent popularity of the contest and the anticipation over Bird Rock Coffee finally having a more central location, expect this event to be well attended.