Changes are a-brewin' at Sump Coffee. The South City handcrafted coffee house, which opened in December, is pressing ahead with plans to roast its own beans.
The time line, like the product, is fluid. Owner Scott Carey and his crew are spending the next couple of weeks doing mechanical work to prep for the installation of the roaster, and he expects to fire it up by late July. Although Carey's shooting for introducing his own roast to the menu by fall, he plans to take his sweet time perfecting the roasting process.
“We want to do it right and allow ourselves to take as long as it requires,” he says. “It is not about lowering costs or increasing margins, but instead it's about the extension of our craft and furthering our understanding of coffee.
“We want to create something special, something foundational, something unique to Sump, something unique to St. Louis – but do it in a third-wave coffee style by preserving the terroir and seasonalness of the bean.”
Sump loyalists need not worry about a shakeup in the menu anytime soon. Carey says several customer favorites will still be available – PT's, Counter Culture, Intelligentsia and Kuma Coffee – and the beans will still get the full-on spa treatment from top-notch espresso machines and a cold drip Kyoto-style coffee maker that looks like it'd more at home in the clandestine laboratory of a scientist experimenting with re-animation. But in a mere matter of months, when Carey has just the right roast, expect to see a Sump Coffee original crop up in after-hours tastings and pairing, and alongside the regular menu lineup.
South City Sump, 3700 S. Jefferson Ave., South City, sumpcoffee.com