Coffee is more than a quick and simple pick-me-up to Brett Henry, founder and co-owner of Honest Coffee Roasters. It’s a science—a meticulous process that needs hands-on attention from the moment the coffee is grown to the time it’s placed in the customer’s hands.
On Wednesday, March 22, Huntsville will be the new Honest Coffee customer thanks to a pop-up shop located on the second floor of U.G. White Mercantile in Downtown Huntsville. Among the outdoor gear, pottery churns, and old-fashioned candy, visitors will be able to sample the Franklin-based coffee company’s product for a limited time!
The pop-up shop is scheduled to operate for the next 4-6 weeks and will be open from 7 a.m. – 3 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
“This pop-up shop serves a few purposes,” said Brett. “One, it will allow us to train our Huntsville-based baristas—something we take very seriously. And two, we can give people a preview of what to expect when we open our doors across the street at Clinton Row. We hope to welcome customers at our permanent location around May 1st.”
Let’s be Honest, what makes the coffee so great?
At Honest Coffee, you won’t find people who are simply, “roasters.” You will find craftsman—people who view the art of coffee making as a chance to be brilliant and push the limits of what defines an exceptional cup of coffee. And you will discover that once you’ve had your eyes opened to the world of boundary-breaking coffee, it will be hard to go back.
“Sourcing is one thing that sets us apart,” said Brett. “We actually send our roasters down to the country of our coffee’s origin. We get to be the first to pick lots. Coffee is a fruit, and if you’re able to physically see which plants are producing the best fruit and foster a relationship with the local farmers they will be compelled to give you the best crop on hand.”
Honest Coffee is also able to control the quality of its product while it’s being stored. All coffee is brought up in small shipments, stored and roasted quickly. “It’s just like we’ve always stressed: We like less,” said Brett. “Less time in the roaster and fewer days before consumption.” And while sourcing is a cornerstone of the company, excellence also depends on the people involved.
“We have gone to great lengths to find and recruit the best talent possible,” said Brett. “These are people who are willing to go the distance and commit to our mission. The roasting process can make or break you, and we know that the talent we have on hand is passionate and committed to delivering the best possible product.”
A quick 30 seconds too long in the roaster can negatively affect the quality of the coffee. The conditions have to be perfect, according to Brett. And he is confident that the roasters at Honest have the process down to an art.
“They even account for the humidity in the room,” said Brett. “A number of different variables mean the process can be totally thrown off if you don’t handle it properly. That’s why we send our roasters all over the country to continue to train and stay updated on the best roasting processes. This is their livelihood, and they take it seriously.”
All baristas who work with the team at Honest Coffee have to undergo a thorough training process. Christy Graves, operating manager for the future Honest Coffee location on Clinton Row, said that introductory training lasts three weeks, followed by an additional three months before baristas earn their aprons.
“It’s very extensive,” said Christy. “We don’t just hire anyone and let them start messing with the equipment and serve customers right away. It’s a very thoughtful process for us. All this training leads to a finished product that looks beautiful and tastes amazing.”
“Whatever you are, be a good one.” – Abraham Lincoln
“At a very core level, we want to inspire people to be excellent in whatever they do,” said Brett. “We hope that by taking our business so seriously and caring a great deal about what we produce it inspires people to be the best in whatever they commit to—family, work, hobbies—be the best you can be.”
Do everything in a way you can be proud of. It’s a simple message, but one that’s stood the test of time for Honest Coffee.
“We want our customers to have an experience, not just a cup of coffee,” said Brett. “Come visit us at our pop-up shop and get a preview of what’s to come. We think it’s going to be some of the best coffee you’ve tasted in Alabama—honest.”
Honest Coffee Roasters, Pop-up Shop:
U.G. White Mercantile
115 Clinton Ave E.,
Huntsville, AL 35801
Hours: 7 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Are you excited about Honest Coffee Roasters coming to Huntsville in May? Do you plan on visiting their pop-up shop? Let us know in the comments!
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CRUNKLETON COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE GROUP