Has there ever been more press, more hype, more exhaustive coverage of a new cafe than that which attends the opening of Handsome Coffee Roasters in LA? They've already vaulted to the top of the “gotta visit” list, yours and ours, but in a funny way it feels like we've been there already. And not from the pre-emptive Strand job they received last August…maybe it's because we searched “Handsome Coffee” in Google News. Let's peruse, shall we?
An interview with the boys is running over on Cool Hunting:
The inevitable question, where did the name Handsome come from?
Wells: We went around and around about names for more than two months. Basically our whole aesthetic and philosophy is about way back when, when things were made by hand. Things were quality, a recall to the days of really cool equipment like sewing machines. I was thinking about old bread ovens because I like baking. One morning I was half asleep in bed and it hit me, Handsome Coffee. We are Handsome Coffee Roasters. I texted Chris: “Handsome Coffee Roasters?” He texted back “expletive… yes!”
A glowing feature on the fellows from LA Times coffee wonk Tien Nguyen:
The layout of the entire shop, Owens says, is intended to have a specific “line of sight.” From the coffee bar, you can look straight into the roasting room, then straight into the back of the house, where the green beans are stored. If your mind's eye goes even further, you might even travel back to see the farms where the coffee grows.
But that's just all in the subconscious. If it registers and you want to “nerd out” about coffee, the Handsome crew are happy to oblige.
Daily Candy LA is jumping on the Handsome man-wagon:
They source the highest-quality, seasonal small batches from across the globe and roast them in-house with a vintage craft roaster (situated behind a glass partition for your viewing pleasure). A pared-down menu (espresso, espresso with milk, brewed coffee) deftly showcases the finished product.
It would be impossible for Taste Terminal to be more all-over it, going on to feature Handsome's NYC expansion plans:
Early 2012, the Handsome boys will be opening their second location in the heart of Wall Street, round the corner from the New York Stock Exchange. The location will be officially named Handsome Coffee Roasters at Demi Monde, located at 90 Broad Street. Expect the same drink offerings as the L.A. location.
Grub Street is not to be outdone, though come on guys, pick up the word count:
. A wood-heavy glass box of a space sports a central bar of white tile, along with a Probat roaster, communal tables, and swashbuckling cups. Vaulting it above the typically hyped new gourmet coffee shop, an ongoing deal finds any bag of beans, even at the top-of-the-line, available for just seventeen bucks until the grand debut.
Sinosoul offers a photo-and-bodily-function-forward look at the new space:
The space is extremely “Four Barrel”-esque, and that’s a beautiful, beautiful thing. Just like Four Barrel, the Probat is decidedly “right there” in the room with you. You see it when you’re ordering, you see it when you’re sipping lattes, you don’t see it when you use the handsome bathrooms (sorry, I had to, just once).
And of course there's been every-other-monthly features in BMag and a feature quite similar to this one ran earlier today on Dear Coffee, I Love You. All of which to say: Handsome Coffee Roasters, your cafe is truly stunning, that coffee of yours (that we've tried so far) is bangin', your recent hires are choice, and your NYC space sounds intriguing. But more than anything else, you Handsomes have distinguished yourselves as perhaps the greatest coffee marketeers in extra-specialty coffee history. And that's really great for our industry.
In all sincerity, congratulations, sorry we couldn't make it, and we'll see you soon.