Dipping our Toes in the LA Coffee Scene

Photo courtesy Pin Drop Coffee @pindropcoffee

Nossa Familia Coffee Pops at Coffee Hall in Los Angeles, CA

by Alex Kipling, Nossa Familia Coffee’s LA Relationship Manager

Nossa Familia Coffee at Coffee Hall, Los Angeles, California

When Nossa Familia Coffee applied for Coffee Hall Los Angeles, a curated, rotating espresso bar, I was doubtful that a Portland roaster with a small presence in Los Angeles would be considered. We were one of the only companies without a shop and/or roastery in or around the city. Plus we had just two people to represent Nossa Familia in all of Los Angeles! 

Yet I had forgotten something: Nossa’s unique way of doing things. 

Nossa Familia Coffee is one of the few B-Corp Certified roasters in the country. And it goes beyond excellent coffee quality. Nossa is one of the few roasters heavily involved in both local and farm communities. It has partnered with farm owners in Guatemala and Nicaragua to build processing facilities and generators; worked with new farmers in Cameroon to improve their annual coffee quality and production; and led the way in vertical integration, where green coffee is directly sourced (many are family direct) and shipped to the warehouse in Portland, OR.

And did I mention that all the coffee is roasted on a Loring, meaning there is more quality control and up to an 80% reduction of emissions? 

It all sounded like a very intriguing fit for a gig at Coffee Hall—would Aldo (founder) accept a specialty coffee outsider?

Specialty Coffee, Los Angeles

In 2007, I started working for one of the first Los Angeles coffee shops that served and was trained by Intelligentsia. We learned that coffee was to be manipulated and that we, as the Baristi, had the task of showcasing all the intricacies of the coffee cycle in the finished beverage. However, this was Los Angeles, a city famous for big and successful brands. Starbucks and Peet’s were the coffee kings; they had a firm grip on the standards of LA’s coffee culture.

It would take several more years before the big and diverse city of Los Angeles was ready to embrace the independent, artisan coffee shop scene.

Fast forward ten years.

Chinatown. Downtown Los Angeles.

In three months, more than twenty specialty and mostly local coffee shops and roasters have been given 3-day stints to feature the best of their coffees and culture at a fully-equipped espresso bar. With an ever-changing menu, customers and coffee industry members get the unique experience of trying out LA’s blossoming coffee scene and local foods vendors all in one space. Trying to bring together the local coffee community and display its vibrant culture, Coffee Hall has been the official host of LA’s new and thriving coffee scene. With a “calendar [that] is jam-packed with the LA coffee community’s finest and brightest,” Nossa Familia Coffee was incredibly honored when they were invited to run the bar from March 26 – March 28th.

In three days, Nossa’s LA team served more than 250 coffee drinks to coffee lovers and coffee professionals. With new friends made both inside and outside the specialty industry, Nossa Familia announced its arrival in the LA market.

And this is just the beginning…