Chain coffeehouses continue to be all the rage -- after all, when it comes to pleasing American palates, consistency seems to be the most important factor, and chains certainly offer that. But slowly, in the same way we've changed our attitudes toward "craft" and "artisanal" products, coffee is having a quiet resurgence among connoisseurs and those who simply want to enjoy refined tastes and lend an economic hand to their immediate community and not the Seattle boardroom of a company that may or may have not started as a mermaid porn purveyor (according to this Robot Chicken sketch anyways).
With a growing population of roasters like the charity-oriented Restore Coffee Roasters within the Christ Fellowship church at the Boynton Beach mall and Calusa Coffee Roasters on Commercial Boulevard taking hold this year, this is a change that can't be ignored.
Joining in is Argyle Coffee Roasters, brainchild of Costa Rican owner Manny Carrera. He's looking to defrock the modern mentality of having coffee on the go with the Ticos' more casual approach to coffee drinking -- a pura vida culture revolving around the cup's power to bring family, friends, and strangers to a table for friendly conversation.
Born in Costa Rica, Carrera had a hard time escaping the country's connection with coffee. The nation produces a high-caffeine bean that has been a major player in the country's economy since the late 1700s. And with six distinct growing regions operating year-round and at different heights, Costa Rican coffee exhibits many of the prized qualities of gourmet coffees, even if its beans tend to be blended with inferior ones.
Carrera has devoted his life to coffee and has studied the nuances of coffee-making, flavor profiles, and roasting processes. First attempting home roasts, he trained in San Francisco's Boot Coffee, where he learned the science and art of roasting.
Settling in South Florida and attacking palates throughout the region with pop-ups at various events and establishing a friendly caffeine presence in places like the FAT Village art walk and the Las Olas farmer's market has been gaining Argyle some steady momentum. Outfitted with a Diedrich ir24, the new brick-and-mortar operation will serve as Carrera's lab/production facility, as well as a meeting place where folks can enjoy the entire coffee-roasting process.
He's expanding on his mission statement of "drinking better coffee" so you won't be compelled to live out the rest of your life thinking it's perfectly OK for coffee to exist solely in your car's cup holder or on the precarious teeter-totter of navigation through a busy hallway. All that rushing around is, simply put, not the way to live, because soque es pura paja!
Argyle Coffee Roasters is located at 722 N. Andrews Ave., Suite B, Fort Lauderdale. Call 305-527-5327, or visit argylecoffeeroasters.com.