Considering October 21, 2015 is now a day in the past, I felt it appropriate that I #throwbackthursday to my first experience visiting a coffee roasting facility back in 2013. (In case you didn’t see the posts on social media serving as a reminder, yesterday was the day that Marty McFly and Doc Brown went to the future to save Marty’s kids in the 1989 film Back to the Future II.)
Gary, the co-founder of Caffe Luxxe, provided a wonderful tour of their roasting facilities and training area. While he ground the beans for my latte’s espresso, he walked me through some of the basics, explaining their methodology, history, product line, and barista program. This extremely positive experience has stayed with me and provided the foundation for my interest in quality coffee, in addition to a easy decision when I see menus that say “Serving Caffe Luxxe.”
Bar Nine is tucked away on a side street in Culver City with a nondescript facade, with only the number 9 on a gate making it known you’re in the right place. You enter to see a bar and roasting facilities, and despite being a hipster warehouse, the industrial setting is comfortable and inviting.
The coffee of the day at Bar Nine is Kayu Peaberry from Murang’a, Kenya, with intense bursts of boysenberry and passion fruit, and nuanced sweetness. Seeing as how peaberry is my weakness, being my preferred choice for black coffee, I was thrilled to find it also makes a wonderfully smooth cold brew. When mixed with their hazelnut milk, made in house daily, the cold brew picks up a strong caramel color. The hazelnut milk provides the perfect balancing act, with a hint of nuttiness playing off the sweet fruit flavors of the peaberry.
Bar Nine’s coffee program is unique in that it only has one coffee available per day, which can be served any way you can think of, ranging from espresso to drip coffee. They have three coffees in rotation on the menu, with each week owning one of these varieties. They roast all of their beans in house (if you don’t believe them simply based off the large area of beans in burlap bags, I can vouch for them; I was there during a roasting session). Post-roasting, they like to let their beans sit/rest for a day and a half before having them hop over to the bar. And as if all of that wasn’t enough reason to make this a must-stop coffee shop, they even let you keep the glass jar!