N, R at 28th St.
At Stumptown, you don’t have a cup of coffee; you have a Finca El Injerto, Pacamara (that’s the farm from which the beans were sourced and the varietal from which they descended). Founder Duane Sorenson once paid $130 per pound for Geisha, a bean varietal from Panama known for its complex flavor profile and its rarity. “It tasted like perfume,” he says. Enough of the Pacific Northwest believes in Sorenson’s message (which includes fair trade, of course) that he now has five cafés, two café-roasteries, and one stand-alone roastery in the region. But when you’re a believer, you want to spread the message, preferably to the largest and most visible market. So in 2008, Sorenson loaded up a U-Haul and drove to Brooklyn. He found an apartment in Carroll Gardens and began laying the groundwork for converting New York from its generally tragic coffee habits. “This town is ridiculous,” he says. “Make a good cup of coffee for your neighbor, fuck!”