I was recently introduced to Brewklyn Grind, a local coffee and tea company started by 3 Brooklyn brothers. The coffee is currently roasted (with precision and love) in Sunset Park and can be purchased online and all over Brooklyn. As a devoted coffee drinker and lover of BK, I was eager to get my hands on some of these beans. I headed over to the Bushwick Farmer’s Market last weekend where I snagged a bag of the Peru Le Merced as well as a tin of Brewklyn Grind’s Sweet Green Tea. Simply put, both the coffee and tea were delicious and I have enjoyed many a mug-full since then.
Craig, one of the brothers behind Brewklyn Grind, was kind enough to answer some questions for the blog. Read on to learn more about the company, the coffee and even the bird on the logo…
I love that Brewklyn Grind is a family business. How long have you guys been roasting coffee? What made you take it to the next level and start Brewklyn Grind?
Although we have always been a big coffee drinking family, we began home roasting coffee in 2003 in our quest for the perfect cup of coffee. It wasn’t until 2008, that we decided to take our passion to the next step. Aside for the opportunity to work with my brothers, the catalyst was certainly the economy in 2008. Having graduated from college with a degree in bio-medical engineering (hence the science part of our secret sauce), saying it was a tough job environment would be an understatement. I decided then and there that it was time to take a risk and see if others would appreciate our differentiated approach to roasting coffee. This was a hard decision considering we were new comers to the ‘roasting scene’ (and not from the west coast) but I think we offer a very unique product and deep local roots that resonates well with people.
What do you look for when selecting your coffees and teas?
First and foremost it’s quality. Our goal is to deliver the freshest most flavorful coffees and teas out there, which starts with the input. We turn over our coffees and teas frequently to ensure we are capturing the best part of the seasonal curve, so we don’t warehouse a lot of the same coffee. The result is a dynamic product offering that is constantly changing. Coupled with our relentless pursuit of the perfect roast (almost obsessive behavior), the small batch roasted approach, and quality control (we cup every roast before we sell) results in a product that stands out from our peers.
I took home a bag of the Peru La Merced from the Bushwick Farmers Market. What is special about this coffee?
The coffee speaks to spirit behind Brewklyn Grind, leveraging the unique experiences growing up in Brooklyn and great people we have come to know who share in our vision of delivering great coffee and tea. The coffee is our 2nd farm direct relationship we have managed to add to our unique line up. Like our other Farm Direct coffee from Yamagishi Farms in Kona, La Merced is not only delicious but also checks the box for organic farming and trade processes.
I hear there is an interesting story behind the bird on your logo?
It’s our way of paying homage to ‘old school’ Brooklyn. We grew up with the past time of raising fancy pigeons and racing homing pigeons. Many of those memories included early mornings on the roof with a cup of coffee or tea in hand. My brother and father actually made it on the Mike Tyson show last year on the Animal Planet (Taking on Tyson) – who is famously known for his involvement. While you were out in Bushwick if you happened to look up you would have seen some of the neighborhood guys on their roof flying their birds. It has always been a metaphor for escaping the city’s daily ‘GRIND’ so we included it in our logo (sometimes it reminds me of that James Taylor song ‘up on the roof’).
And since this is a food blog, what are some of your favorite places to eat in Brooklyn?
Growing up in South Brooklyn, L&B Pizza (Spumoli Gardens) in Bensonhurst comes to mind and there is great middle eastern place called Tanoreen in Bay Ridge.
You can’t help but like these guys for their passion for finding and crafting the best product (not to mention their deep appreciation of their BK roots). And once you drink some of their coffee and tea, you might just love them!