Ox Coffee, a new java option for Queen Village, is opening with a bang Saturday at 616 S. 3rd St. with a party from 6 to 10 p.m.
Will Gross and Max Cudworth, longtime friends and owners of Ox Coffee, met at Joe the Art of Coffee in Manhattan, where Gross was the barista trainer.
Gross then went on to work with Stumptown Coffee Roasters in Brooklyn. Cudworth was studying saxophone in New York when he joined the team at Joe and advanced to senior barista.
Gross is from Philadelphia, and his family has a history of owning businesses here. He and Cudworth both agreed to set up shop in Philadelphia after Hurricane Sandy hit New York.
“I’ve seen the coffee culture here,” said Gross. “The coffee businesses here are quality driven and focused on selling the best.”
One coffeehouse staple you won’t find at Ox is Wi-fi. Gross says the aim is to create an atmosphere where people can drink coffee and socialize without technological distractions. The shop should fit about 12 people seated plus a standing bar for seven more.
Local bands will perform from time to time. The guys take the local thing to heart, sourcing their teas, honey, milk and bakery items from local purveyors. Their milk will come from Farm Fresh Cooporative in Lancaster. Tea will be from the Green Aisle Grocery, pastries will be baked at Wild Flour Bakery. The coffee is Stumptown Coffee Roasters.
“The quality and focus of that company [Stumptown] is incredible,” Gross said.
The menu provides a variety of specialty drinks such as drip coffee, espresso, lattes, Americano, macchiato, cappuccino as well as their iced counterparts. Tea, soy milk and additional shots are also available.
Gross and Cudworth hope to educate the public on the quality of coffee. They plan to hold workshops on how to brew coffee using different home brew methods and how to discern between the taste of good and poor quality coffee.
“We’re hoping to share everything we’ve learned about coffee with the community,” Cudworth said.
– Ruthann Alexander, @RuthannAlexande