Thanks to Liz Crain for including us in the Food Lover’s Guide to Portland p. 142.
PDX: Downtown Stumptown Ups Its Game
If there’s one thing we love, it’s innovation at a classic space. Over the last few weeks, Sprudge.com Portland HQ / Portland Visitation Road Team have noticed a couple of awesome new features at the flagship downtown Stumptown location, and well, it’s not enough that we’ve noticed them – we can in all honesty and good conscience vouch for their deliciousness and sincerely recommend you towards both.
First, around 6 weeks ago DT Stumptown rolled out an on-tap version of their Stumptown Cold Brew. It’s pulled from an actual beer tap, with a wooden tap handle, and served tall in a pint glass with ice. There’s sort of the perfect amount of diffusion happening in that pint glass – the ice cubes mingling beneath the indoor heating blast of Portland’s First Cold Week – making for quite the refreshing sip.
Second, if you’re one of those Portland “east-and-north of the river” types who cross a bridge like once every other month, DT Stumptown is newly offering a curated slow bar in the back of the space. It’s sort of like a miniature version of the Stumptown Annex, but with a few select menu options applied to specific brew methods, including Clever, V60 and Aeropress. A recent Aeropress service of their Ethiopia Yukro yielded a pleasant acidity with you-can-really-taste-it notes of peach truth. In Sprudge’s ongoing narrative of “what’s the best thing we’ve tasted in x amount of time”, that cup of Yukro is a clear contender.
DT Stumptown is at 128 Southwest 3rd Avenue, in frosty Portland, Oregon. Cold brew is available on tap every day, pour over bar open Fri-Sun through the holidays.
Stumptown Coffee Roasters was born in Portland in 1999. Whether Founder Duane Sorenson was merely seeking to simply produce a quality cup ‘o joe for the neighboring community or attempting to revolutionize the biz is the great unknown. What is known is that Sorenson and Stumptown have completed the latter. There is such a thing as the “Third Wave” in the coffee movement, and Stumptown shares top billing on that film’s marquee.
The culture at Stumptown is considerably different than perhaps any other coffee purveyor. Sorenson is famous for forming lasting relationships with bean farmers, visiting the farms in person and unafraid to pay high prices for that perfect dose of worthy coffee. And perks for employees are hardly the norm. In an era where a growing list of companies are pulling the plug on once-standard benefits such as 401k and health insurance, Stumptown has offered such quirky and unique perks as an on-staff massage therapist and a compilation album for the company’s barista/rock stars.
Keeping up with its trendsetting ways, Stumptown in recent months unleashed Cold Brew Stubbies. With the iced coffee genre on an upswing, the Stumptown version, encased in the retro-cool brown glass bottles, is exactly what longtime cultists have come to expect: high end, crisp, and unrelentingly hip. Stumptown operates out of Portland, Seattle and NYC, with a wholesale unit that can stretch the world.
Our grandfathers bemoan that once they could buy a cup of java for a nickel. Nostalgia being rose-colored, these great men never sipped on a Stumptown Coffee Roasters cup. Score one for the Gen-Xer’s.
From BevNET.com – “The fact that they chose a stubby — a little brown glass bottle that has been around forever — and turned it into something that feels modern, cool, and innovative impressed the panel a lot. Plus, they did a great job executing the vintage style label art. Both of these are very consistent with the Stumptown brand. The label is clean, readable and direct – you know exactly what it is. Plus, the silkscreen application gives the appearance of quality, which is what Stumptown is all about. Just from looking at it, it’s clear that the coffee inside the bottle isn’t going to disappoint.”
“ABSTRACT: LETTER FROM EL SALVADOR about coffee grower Aida Batlle. Batlle is a fifth-generation coffee farmer and a first-generation coffee celebrity. On the steep hillsides of the Santa Ana Volcano, in western El Salvador, she produces beans that trade on the extreme end of the coffee market. These beans have made Batlle an object of obsession among coffee connoisseurs and professionals. During the Salvadoran civil war, from 1980 until 1992, the Batlle family took refuge in Miami, which is where Aida Batlle grew up. She arrived in Santa Ana, the country’s scruffy second city, in 2002, only vaguely acquainted with the business and practice of coffee farming. She knew that the family land had potential, because of its high altitude and rich volcanic soil. In 2003, and Batlle decided to enter El Salvador’s inaugural Cup of Excellence competition. Coffee from Finca Kilimanjaro, one of her farms, impressed the panel of judges. At auction, a Norwegian roaster paid $14.06 per pound for Batlle’s coffee. The auction earned Batlle almost forty thousand dollars. More important, the publicity introduced Batlle to the coffee buyers she calls the “dream team”: Duane Sorenson, the founder of Stumptown, in Portland, Oregon…” Read More >>