The relationship with our coffee roasters is one of our defining features. They provide us with our central and most dynamic ingredient. They are our link to the farmers who grow the coffees and to the importers, exporters and others who help coffee move from origin to the U.S. We have settled on the lineup of roasters we are going to use for the foreseeable future. Obviously, it starts that we love the their coffees, but there is always another driving reason we choose to partner with a roaster: shared values. We will be rotating in the newer partners over the next couple of weeks, so we wanted to take a minute to talk about why we chose each one.
Counter Culture Coffee (Durham, NC)
Counter Culture Coffee is from Durham, NC. I have a long relationship with Counter Culture, and I owe these folks a lot. They taught me my first coffee class in 2006, where I was introduced to the potential of coffee. Some of my formative coffee experiences came through CCC events and classes. Counter Culture has done much to lead the way in direct purchasing from farms and co-ops. They support many projects to improve conditions in origin regions, as well as promoting sustainability and transparency in the supply chain, helping us to know more about how much money returns to coffee farmers and farm workers. There is still so much work to be done in this area, but companies like CCC are investing in improvements.
Máquina Coffee (West Chester, PA)
Máquina is a very small operation, and they started around the same time we opened our shop. Gabriel Boscana has been very giving with his time to answer questions, even calling in via video call to answer customer questions. We love the simplified life approach they are following in their business, and the personal care they take in every detail. And have no doubt, Gabriel is an amazing roaster. Máquina focuses on highlighting the seasonality of coffee, keeping a fresh rotation and purchasing small lots from small farmers, and developing relationships through the chain.
It is great to grow our business along with another new business, supporting folks as passionate about coffee as we are. They are feeling their way through developing a new venture, just as we are doing the same thing.
Ruby Coffee Roasters (Nelsonville, WI)
Ruby, like Máquina, is a small company started by someone with massive roasting expertise moving to a smaller community. Jared Linzmeier took the green buying and roasting experience gained at Intelligentsia and Cafe Ladro, and moved home to Central Wisconsin to do his own thing.We like to support people who are working outside the cool places with the happening coffee scenes, building up their local communities.
Cat and Cloud Coffee (Santa Cruz, CA)
There is a lot to say about Cat & Cloud. I have been watching Chris Baca and Jared Truby from afar for years. They recently launched a roastery and cafe, but may be best known in coffee circles for their eponymous coffee podcast. They are some long-time coffee celebrities. That’s cool and all, but we are drawn to them for a different reason. The values they express in terms of buying and serving coffee with hospitality really jibe with us. If I had to pick one thing that made us want to work with them so badly, it is their program for creating sustainable coffee careers for their staff. They are focused on helping staff grow, and then investing back into their employees. For example, they set up from the beginning a profit sharing program and a plan for staff joining the ownership over time. I love this approach to making coffee careers sustainable. Something needs to change in the coffee company model to bring the right people into the industry and give them room to grow, and I am watching C&C as an example of what is possible for Journeyman in the future.
PT’s Coffee (Topeka, KS)
PT’s has long-term relationship with many growers, which give them access to many different experiments that push the boundaries of coffee production. They focus on these Direct Trade relationships to build a reliable supply chain that can create a stable livelihood for farmers and their staff.
We want to quickly thank everyone at these roasters for doing what they do, and for trusting us enough to establish wholesale relationships with us. We will do our best to bring their coffees to you in the best manner we know how. There are so many great roasters out there, these choices are very difficult for a shop. We hope you like where we have focused our efforts. We are always on the lookout for exceptional coffee partners, but we are looking forward to working with these roasters for the long haul. As always, we would love to talk to you about it. Thanks for reading!
I feel like we haven’t given people the clearest impression of what we are doing in the new coffee shop inside the Miccosukee Root Cellar (1311 Miccosukee Rd Tallahassee, FL). So I would like to try again: The morning hours (Tues-Saturday 7am-2pm) are a separate thing from the Root Cellar dinner service (Thurs-Sat 5pm-9pm).
The mornings are a shared endeavor between Journeyman Coffee and the Root Cellar; Journeyman Coffee serves the coffee and tea, Miccosukee Root Cellar provides the food.
We are trying to do something a little different, but think of it as a coffee shop. Or maybe more like a european Cafe mixed with a coffee shop. You can swing by for a quick coffee. We do drinks to-go, no worries. You can grab some light food, beer or wine, but you don’t have to. You can hang out for a while, a long while, or just long enough to grab your coffee.
We aim to make a comfortable, chill space where people can hang out, chat, meet new people, or learn about their coffee and food. Please feel free to ask us any questions, we love to talk about coffee, and most other things. We have wi-fi, so you can also get some work done. You can order at the counter, sit at the bar, or we will bring you a menu and take your order at the table. Either way, we will bring your food and coffee out to you. Whatever works easiest for you.
We take our coffee pretty seriously, but not ourselves. We may dress up a little fancy at work sometimes, but we are not stiff or formal. Everything is super casual. If you have questions, or you don’t see what you want, let’s talk about it. Nothing gets better without feedback, so please tell us what you like and what you don’t. Tell us in person, or send us an email:
We would love to hear from you!
We have plans for how to expand the menu, events and other things. Right now we are trying to get people in to try us out, and get our basics down and running smoothly. Please tell us what you would like to see, because without you all, we would be just be over caffeinated and talking to ourselves. Seriously, though, we appreciate everyone who has come in, thought about coming in, or told a friend. You are why we get up in the morning and do this.
Talk to you later!
I have lived in Tallahassee for about five years now. That entire time, for a number of reasons, I’ve always had one foot out the door, always prepared to move elsewhere. Last year I took a trip through a few cool cities, and thought, “I wish we had something like this going on in Tallahassee”. My first reaction was the easy one: I wish I could move here and join in. But to be honest, I’ve never been one to do things the easy way.
Instead, we are going to double down on Tallahassee.
Last month we bought a house here in town. We’re committing. I have a home for the foreseeable future. I’ve been a nomad for the last decade, so this feels a bit strange.
It may be cliche to reflect on things in the new year, but I took the chance to stop and think about where I am, where I’ve been, and where I’m going. This year, I am going to make this town home. I’m going to do my small part to make the place I live into the place I want to live.
Before you flee your current home for somewhere that seems more interesting, do yourself a favor: make a solid effort to invest in where you are, to take what you have and make it suit you.
I’m looking forward to the future, and all the hard work it is going to take to get there. If you are inclined to help, please do. We need all the ideas, energy and support we can get.
The sudden disappearance of Atomic Coffee from the Tallahassee coffee scene has been surreal. I worked there for around two and a half years, and I feel a bit responsible for the place, since I was there from the beginning. Admittedly, I have complicated feelings about it. I have a lot I could say on the topic, but I am going to stick with one point.
No matter how you felt about the place, there were some great people who worked there, and they probably employed as many coffee people in Tallahassee as every other independent shop combined. (To catch up those who don’t have context, Atomic Coffee was a very small chain with 3 locations, started in 2013. It billed itself as “Third Wave” (take that how you like), and was one of the first places in our medium-sized town to introduce pour-over coffee, and roasters such as Counter Culture, Stumptown, and Intelligentsia. At its best, it offered a passion for awesome coffee that could be infectious.)
One of my goals in life is to help coffee become more of a profession, a sustainable career, even. Not just a part-time job for people doing other things. I realize the difficulties in this path, but I have always had a love for Quixotic quests. Anyway, the sudden evaporation of so many coffee jobs is terrible, both for the people who lost them as well as for anyone looking for a chance to get into the industry and learn more about coffee. Hopefully, there will be more opportunities in the near future.
In the short-term, I can’t do much about the lost industry opportunities (some day, though…), but I think we can do a little something to help the people who lost their jobs without warning and who may be struggling a bit. There is a campaign on Gofundme to help pay the back wages from Atomic Coffee and its sister restaurant, Tomahawk. I am currently organizing a fundraising event for that campaign, where I will get former Atomic Coffee employees to run a pop-up hand brewed coffee bar for donations, to go to the Gofundme effort. I hope you will join us, it promises to be fun, with great coffee and a good cause. Details will be made available as soon as they are definite.