Our friends and partners at Counter Culture Coffee, a Durham, North Carolina based coffee roasting operation that specializes in wholesale accounts, are preparing to open a brand new Training Center space at 376 Broome Street, in Manhattan's Nolita neighborhood. The current CCC NYC space is on the 4th floor of a nondescript office building in the Flatiron District; this new space is a retail-style store front, easily accessible from the street and visible to foot traffic, leading up to what's been described as a “beautiful and open loft” that has “undergone a complete state of the art renovation,” according to Counter Culture's PR liaison, Laura Fryer.
The new Counter Culture Training Center is 3,600 square feet, and was designed by Jane Kim, an architecture instructor at Columbia University whose previous design work includes Milk Bar, Third Rail Coffee, Smith Canteen, and other noted NYC cafe spaces. The space includes a custom-designed water filtration system, stadium-style bleacher seating, a bicycle storage room, vermiculture composting, competition training room, and a wide variety of high-end specialty coffee gear.
The space officially opens to the public during the first week of October, and a special open house is scheduled this weekend:
An exclusive invite-only breakfast/preview event is scheduled for later this week, featuring 2012 US Barista Champion Katie Carguilo, 2013 World Brewers Cup Champion Erin McCarthy, and Counter Culture Sustainability Manager and green buyer Kim Elena Bullock Ionescu. Buzz is building fast, and a slate of events are planned once the space is officially open, including weekly free public cuppings (“Every Friday at 10am”, according to the space's door).
For more on what dwells within Counter Culture's new Manhattan playground, we chatted with the aforementioned Ms. Carguilo via phone from New York City.
On a single sentence to describe the new training center:
“This new flagship training center is designed around the cutting edge education curriculum that Counter Culture is famous for.”
On the new gear they'll be boasting:
“We've got a Modbar, plus multiple espresso machines throughout the space, including a Nuova Simonelli T3 in the competition lab, along with a Mahlkonig EK40 and Mahlkonig Twin grinders (the competition standard). There's also Roburs and Mythos grinders elsewhere in the space. We've also got two Marco Uber Boiler “fonts” built into the brewing tables, and one along a side wall. And there's custom fitted induction burners on the cupping tables.”
On upcoming CCC coffees she's excited for:
“I'm excited about the rest of the Finca Kilimanjaro, and we purchased some Finca Los Alpes which I'm also excited about. We'll also have two single producer Ethiopia Yirgacheffe lots that are coming out – Mamma Boki, in the Kochere district, and Tegegu Ochllo from the Reva district.”
On how this new space stands up to other CCC training centers:
“It's our new flagship location, but it's similar to what you've seen already in Boston and Chicago. This is the defining training center for what we're doing moving forward, but Chicago and Boston are pretty good precursors. And like some of the other TC's, this one is going to have some sweet vinyl to listen to.”