Sooner than not here at Build-Outs, each year like vernal clockwork we turn our attentions to Canada, a vast and global country that’s home to some of the world’s most interesting hubs for food, drink, culture, and coffee—perhaps especially coffee. Following coffee in Canada as an American publication is a matter of respect, inspiration, and future travel planning, something that’s been sorely disrupted over the last, oh, 15 months or so. In that time some really gorgeous new Canadian coffee bars have opened or are in the build-out process, none more stunning than the new Nemesis Coffee in Vancouver, British Columbia. Architecture, scale, design, and pageantry can all be found here, but also an intimate approach to coffee service. This is going on the top of that growing travel list.
As told to Sprudge by Jamie Smith.
For those who aren’t familiar, will you tell us about your company?
Nemesis is a specialty coffee company composed of highly dedicated baristas, chefs, and creatives. We’ve utilized our pursuits of passion and the spaces we explore them in as our catalyst to build community and create culture. These pillars of design, art and music, food, coffee, people, and culture have been the back bone to our ever adapting inspiration and as we mature as a company, we continue to challenge ourselves on how we can best capture this and be apart of the tapestry that creates community here in our city.
Can you tell us a bit about the new space?
Structurally iconic and already a landmark in the city, our architects designed the structure drawing inspiration from the movement of bees and how they’re attracted to flowers. We fell in love with the process and the design as it resembles a rose from concrete soil, a reflection of the challenges and growth we’ve experienced as a team remaining independent of outside investment and building up from scratch to continue to evolve for the better with integrity. This building is truly designed to be a central hub of activity, celebrating nature and growth in its expressive design. Although fitting square pieces in a circle was no easy feat after incredible amounts of collaboration, ideation, and execution, this location are both form and function. Home to our first foray into coffee roasting as well as a deep dive into our culinary pursuits, what will be happening inside, we hope, will be just as beautiful as the outside.
What’s your approach to coffee?
Our coffee program is genuinely unique and is as close to boots-on-ground as we can get. All the coffee we’re roasting has been sourced directly from farmers at origins with partners we know and trust. This approach is no easy task, and full credit lies on the shoulders of our Director of Green Coffee, Damian Durda. This intentional approach of partnership is an exciting prospect as we get the opportunity to grow with humans that are doing incredible work at origin and have the opportunity to share these stories and insight with all our visitors.
Any machines, coffees, special equipment lined up?
How is your project considering sustainability?
We will be focusing on seasonality and suppliers that highlight the best of BC. Here we will be acutely aware of our environmental impact and food waste. Everything from the excess steamed milk that we transform into ricotta we use in our dishes to the whey from the ricotta that we use brine our chicken and much more… We try to re-evaluate our approach to cooking and consider every touchpoint in our consumption to reduce or best re-use ingredients without a loss in quality.
Beyond this, considerations in material choices while fabricating the building itself reduced carbon footprint all the way to the roaster we selected (Loring s15) in consideration of making conscious, sustainable choices for the function of our day to day programming.
What’s your hopeful target opening date/month?
Early June 2021
Are you working with craftspeople, architects, and/or creatives that you’d like to mention?
Perkins and Will – Architects.