In Los Angeles, Connecting Micro Lots With Coffee Nuts (Via Video Phone)


Around 4 p.m. on a recent Monday afternoon at Intelligentsia’s Silver Lake cafe, a dozen or so folks gathered in the patio of the cafe, chatting, texting, waiting. A MacBook and a television were set up in the corner, also waiting. Geoff Watts, the coffee company's vice-president and green buyer, arrived a few minutes after 4:00. He took his … [Read more...]

The Sixth Annual Sprudgie Awards

sprudgies award

Welcome to the 6th annual Sprudgie Awards! The Sprudgies honor notable achievements in coffee in a variety of categories, awarded each year after careful deliberation. This year’s awards were authored by’s editorial team of Liz Clayton, Alex Bernson, Jordan Michelman and Zachary Carlsen. Best New Cafe: Scandinavian Embassy Notable … [Read more...]

Barista Healthcare: How Do Your Favorite Coffee Companies Stack Up?


After raising $45 million in its latest round of funding, Blue Bottle Coffee is now extending healthcare benefits to its employees' dependents, and plans to offer retirement benefits as well. When I read that in this piece on Valleywag, it struck me as a positive attempt by Blue Bottle to stand out from the pack, since in our 2013 survey on barista … [Read more...]

Ryan Soeder Of Intelligentsia Wins The 2015 North Central Barista Competition

Big Central Ryan Soeder Intelligentsia Coffee Chicago 45

Ryan Soeder, a retail educator for Intelligentsia Coffee in Chicago, has won the 2015 North Central Regional Barista Competition title. He’ll move on to compete (with a first-round bye) at the 2015 United States Barista Championship this coming February in Long Beach, California, and his win also earns him a place on the 2015 Cafe Imports origin … [Read more...]

Western Brewers Champs, Star Baristas & More On SprudgeLive


It's coffee competition season here in the United States, and that means that Sprudge is out on the road, bringing you comprehensive coverage of every Regional Barista Competitions and the United States Barista Championships, all in the lead up to the 2015 World Barista Championship in Seattle, WA. We're also bringing you coverage from some of the … [Read more...]

The Scoop: Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream Teams With Intelligentsia Coffee

Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream Intelligentsia Sprudge

Jeni Britton Bauer is my ice cream hero. Many among the coffee nerd set have heroes similar to this—people with whom we'd love to sit down and watch while they work, roasting or brewing coffee, boring them to death with questions about extraction and pour speed, such that we might learn from them ourselves. But if someone were making me ice … [Read more...]

Build Outs Of Summer: Collective Coffee In Charleston

Build out Collective Downtown 17

Today’s the last day for our 2014 Build Outs Of Summer series, and we have another one for you, coming in at the eleventh-and-a-half hour. Collective Coffee has expanded to a new location in downtown Charleston, South Carolina. They're serving Intelligentsia coffees and Kilogram Teas, alongside guest roasters like Mountain Air from North Carolina … [Read more...]

Open Now: Skin and Suds at Intelligentsia Coffee’s New Wicker Park Cafe


That modern new apartment building you see at the corner of West Division Street and North Ashland Avenue? It's home to Chicago's newest Intelligentsia cafe. Designed by Danny Wicke of noted Chicago architecture firm Wheeler Kearns Architects, the space stands in tall contrast to the more historic architecture of neighboring buildings. The … [Read more...]

Where to Get Coffee Before Heading to Your Favorite Chicago Music Festival

Pitchfork Music Festival 2013 - Emily Machura

Let’s face it: if you’re planning on attending a music festival in Chicago this summer, chances are, at some point, you’re going to need a good cup of coffee. Maybe you’ll need some coffee to fuel yourself for a day of drinking and dancing to some of your favorite bands in the sun, or maybe you’ll just need it to nurse away your hangover from … [Read more...]

In Washington DC, The Wydown Goes From Pop-Up To Permanent


Three weeks ago The Wydown coffee bar opened a permanent location on 14th and U Street, in an exciting development for both eager newcomers and loyal quaffers in the Washington DC coffee scene. Chad and Alex McCracken—brothers from St. Louis, Missouri—have been running a series of progressively more brick and mortar coffee pop-ups over the last … [Read more...]

BREAKING: Co-CEO Rob Buono Is Stepping Down At Intelligentsia

Rob Buono pictured here in 2012.

Tricoastal roasters and retailers (Lake Michigan counts, alright?) Intelligentsia Coffee announced this morning that much-storied Co-CEO Rob Buono will be stepping down from his position, at the end of a three-year tenure that saw tremendous growth for the independent company. In his footsteps will follow James McLaughlin, who's served variously … [Read more...]

BKON And Kilogram Tea Blend Seasonality And Technology In New York City


In a beverage event of truly synergistic proportions, last week, the folks at BKON teamed up with Kilogram Tea for a demonstration at Intelligentsia's newest cafe in New York City's Herald Square. The invitation-only event showcased both the unique powers of the BKON, detailed earlier in these pages, and the subtle beauties of early spring … [Read more...]

First Look: Intelligentsia’s Herald Square Cafe at Urban Outfitters’ Latest New York Outpost


There are few things more exciting in Midtown Manhattan than a promising new cafe, and this week, Sprudge got an exclusive sneak-preview of the soon-to-be-unveiled Intelligentsia project opening this June in bustling Herald Square. The project is a progressive mixed-retail collaboration from the minds of Urban Outfitters, whose new space at 35th … [Read more...]

A New Brewer, A Coffee Pop-Up, And Great Beer This Weekend In Chicago


An update of sorts out of Chicago, home of designer Craighton Berman, whose distinctive Manual Coffee Maker (MCM) was featured on last summer. It's a beautiful piece of home brew tech, designed to be "left out on a counter for fast access, less set up, and aesthetic consideration," according to the designer. In the months since our … [Read more...]

Intelligentsia Modbar Louisville Gralehaus Beer Dinner


Gralehaus is the latest project from Louisville, Kentucky's Lori Beck and Tyler Trotter, adding a cozy café/bar (and soon a guest house) to their wildly popular Holy Grale beer compound. Beck and Trotter are on a mission to bring world-class beer experiences to Louisville, starting with the Louisville Beer Store in 2009, and opening Holy Grale in … [Read more...]

Chicago: This Is Your Chance To Try Some Of The Rarest Coffee In The World


Last month we announced the limited edition release of Intelligentsia Coffee's Café Inmaculada series, a set of rare coffee varieties grown by Camilo Merizalde at his experimental farm in Valle de Cauca, Colombia. On Monday, February 17th from 6-7pm, Mr. Merizalde will personally be in attendance at a special Café Inmaculada tasting in Chicago, at … [Read more...]