East One espresso roasters convey hassle-free espresso and fare to Brooklyn
In a humble Brooklyn corner of Carrol Gardens, at the junction of Carroll and Court Streets, there used to be a popular red sauce hangout called Casa Rosa. It opened in 1979 and ran a stable business as a local favorite until 2013 when its owners finally closed the store. But Casa Rosa was never replaced – in fact, the storefront stayed empty for years. That is, until Tom Cummings saw it had hit the market.
“People have been looking through the boards and structures for a while to see what’s coming,” says Cummings. Now it’s no secret –East One coffee roaster has come. “We have only been open for a few days,” he adds. “And the neighborhood seems excited.”
Cummings and longtime partner Morten Tjelum envisioned East One as the intersection for exceptional coffee and accessible food – they’re open in the mornings to keep customers caffeine throughout dinner.
“Older women came this week,” says Cummings. “And they’re like my mother – they tell me about the neighborhood and we can talk for hours about food and coffee.” East One isn’t Cumming’s first coffee rodeo, however. “I lived in Denmark and the coffee scene wasn’t very good – around 1996,” he says. He spent that time owning an American restaurant in central Copenhagen before selling it to work for it IKEAwhere he stayed for 15 years.
“But I couldn’t shake the coffee thoughts I was having,” says Cummings. “So I went for the independent thing and we opened up New series of coffees. You know it’s very simple, I’ve been in food all my life – from watching my family cook at a young age to seeing my own places. But by that point I was getting really thoughtful and thoughtful, and coffee just felt like my life was leading me there. “
It also took him to New York, where he was inspired Ninth Street Espresso before opening Free State of Coffee, also next to Tjelum. Here they played with batch beers and deepened the passion for their product. “Coffee is about bringing diverse people who can do great things,” says Cummings. “And that’s how we brought it to New York.”
James Stahon, the East One coffee maker, was waiting for them (the three met through Sprudge Jobs), which is now roasting on site in a beautiful glazed area with a roast Diedrich IR-12.
“I hired James to find blends that would be acceptable to the New York mass palate,” says Cummings. “But isn’t a typical city roast to be found that often in this city? We wanted to stretch that palate – and that’s the longer-term vision for us. “East One currently serves a daily coffee for Native New Yorkers but will soon be buying seasonally by individual lots and offering those coffees as lightly roasted options.
“We are currently working with Harvest to the cupthat made me work before we had our own space, ”says Stahon. “We get three coffees from them – Sonar, a mix of Guatemala, Ethiopia and Tanzania; Guji, an Ethiopian Sidamo; and then prism which is the filter mix, [and] also Guatemala, Ethiopia and Tanzania. “
He explains that the process of finding a flexible coffee that can be used as both a drip and an espresso offering was a tedious one. “I didn’t start the sourcing process at the best time – it was the off-season so I couldn’t find any newcomers,” says Stahon. “We did so many cupping to find the perfect components. I didn’t want that fermented taste – we wanted a quieter taste. “Now he feels like he has it.
Next on Stahon’s agenda is finding one-stop coffee to “train the muscles of taste,” he says. “We want to challenge ourselves and our customers, but remain available. And that means you’re a little outside of what you think is coffee. “
Selina Ullrich, East One coffee and operations manager, agrees with Stahon. “This neighborhood is also ready to be challenged. With a good explanation, you can actually make progress, ”she says, adding that there is a certain joy in watching customers switch from“ this won’t bother you about coffee ”to more complex cups.
In recognition of the role water plays in the coffee process, East One will support international charities focused on clean water initiatives. One of the first examples is Three avocados, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving access to clean water in coffee-growing areas.
For those in the area, this may well be your new favorite cafe in the neighborhood. But with a strong local base, it won’t be long before East One corner is a destination well worth traveling to.
Daniel Scheffler is a Sprudge employee. His work has been featured in T Magazine, Travel And Leisure, Monocle, Playboy, New York Magazine, The New York Times, and Butt. Read more Daniel Scheffler about Sprudge.
Photos courtesy Ethan Covey
May 31, 2017