Blue Bottle Coffee: Please Welcome Guest Blogger Ev
I remember when I first heard about this shop in San Francisco about two years ago, I was dubious about the very expensive cups of coffee. But then I was working over at the Palace at a conference and I dropped into this place at the San Francisco Ferry Building in the Embarcadero. What an incredibly worthwhile very long wait for a simple cup of coffee.
Ev, my brother-in-law, sent me an email with a ton of pics showcasing the place, and I just had to share with y’all.
“Sorry, it took me so long to get you these photos of Blue Bottle,” Ev writes. “I really mean that because I had a great experience taking them. I used go there a lot in the mornings to get a cup but it became too expensive. $2.75 for a drip and $3 bucks for a Gibraltar. Although I did enjoy it I think rather pricey. ~:- ( I asked the manager in the morning if I could come back and photograph the place for alunchboxblog.com, after I got off work. With his approval, I came back in the evening on my way home with my camera.
“I politely waited in line, ordered my Gibraltar and recounted my story from the morning. I reassured them I wouldn’t get in the way and snapped away. I started out front waiting for the “Gib” to be created by a master A.J.I snapped some of the outside and inside; the Japanese coffee preparation products that line the walls; the bagged beans; and the “boys” at the espresso machine.
“I knew there was a sweet machine on second counter so I asked to be allowed into the “Employees Only Zone” and permission was shortly granted. Oh, I’m so cool and grateful. I quickly snapped a few photog’s until one of the employees started asking too many question and made me miss my ferry. Ugh. That’s when I tried to call you.
“Well, here we are back at home. Jacked up on coffee and loving every second. Sometimes, it’s the simple things in life that give us the most comfort. Mine is Coffee.
For a walk through of Ev’s experience waiting for, then devouring his Gibraltar at Blue Bottle, just click on the slideshow below.
From their rather terrific website, the origin of the business’ name is rather eye-opening: “In the late 1600s, the Turkish army swept across much of Eastern and Central Europe, arriving at Vienna in 1683. Besieged and desperate, the Viennese needed an emissary who could pass through Turkish lines to get a message to the nearby Polish troops. Franz George Kolshitsky, who spoke Turkish and Arabic, took on the assignment disguised in a Turkish uniform. After many perilous close calls, Kolshitsky completed his valiant deed, returning to give the Viennese the news of the Poles’ imminent rescue of their city. On September 13, the Turks were repelled from Vienna, leaving everything they brought: camels, tents, honey, and strange bags of beans which were thought to be camel feed. Kolshitsky, having lived in the Arab world for several years, knew these were bags of coffee. Using the money bestowed on him by the mayor of Vienna for his heroic deed, Kolshitsky bought the Turks’ coffee, opened Central Europe’s first coffee-house (The Blue Bottle), and brought coffee to a grateful Vienna.
In the end, what I came away with from my experience was the sheer simplicity and excellence of the beans. I now boil a pot of water every morning, line my ceramic bonmac filter, and grind the Blue Bottle Beans (My particular favorite varietals and blends are the incomparable Oaxaca Adopta Un Cafetal, the primo Three Africans blend, and the Bella Donovan.) I find that in spite of the price, making my drip coffees at home is significantly cheaper than purchasing the professionally made ones at the Ferry Building. OK, it’s not perfect when I make it, but the essence of the experience washes over me every morning.
Here’s how you can purchase your beans and get them shipped to your door: at this time they do not ship internationally. But soon, very soon, I’m sure. Should your flights bring you to San Francisco (and now Brooklyn!), don’t miss this incredible java experience.
Berry St. Brooklyn
160 Berry Street, Brooklyn, NY
M-F 7-7, Sat & Sun 8-7
(718) 387-4160 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (718) 387-4160 end_of_the_skype_highlighting