Do you like coffee? Do you know where the Kickapoo Building is located? Why not check out the 30/30 Coffee Company located at 734 Main Street? You will see lots of people streaming through the doors to enjoy the atmosphere and the great coffee. You’ll even see the famous Jumer’s bear!
Ty Paluska, a co-owner, and Steve Elmore another co-owner, talked about the long neglected mess that existed on the first floor when they took possession. (Don Williamson, the 3rd co-owner was not available for the interview.) According to these co-owners, a lot of shambles had to be shoveled away into trash containers and hauled away.
Wanting to keep renovation costs down, these owners designed their own interior aesthetic architectural designs, even though the work was mostly carried out by contractors. According to Paluska, they wanted the most natural light from the windows, and supplemented lighting from subdued fluorescent lighting recessed from above.
Paluska says “people who work early will come in wanting to buy drip coffee.” They use a refractor to make sure that the coffee has the proper amount of solids. They grind and roast their own coffee beans, using a refractor in their specialized gourmet coffees every day, to measure the levels of the solids. Every cup of coffee is freshly made. The unique level of taste is measured with the right balance of acidity.
“The 30/30 Coffee Co. usually stays busy all day long,” says Elmore. There are periods of time on weeknights and weekends, when there is standing room only. He sees the same faces often. It is their philosophy to be actively involved in the community. According to Elmore, all of the staff volunteer time to St. Jude’s or other charitable fundraisers. Dream Center staff contacted him about their desire to have the Coffee Co. teach high school age young adults some marketable skills. Several of these trainees come every other week to learn skills like marketing, management, and processing of the products.
Parking fills up fast. However, according to Paluska, parking is also available at the next level above the parking wall.
According to co-owner Steve Elmore, “it is important to the whole staff that every precise detail be employed to satisfy every customer.” He further explained that all of the staff focuses on the total supply chain – where the coffee grows from beginning to end. From the beginning, it was their vision that the coffee would come from farms that displayed “fair trade principles’ where the workers have a say in the growing of the coffee.
For instance, if you type in Kenya Kagumo in the search line, you will see the following characteristics of its environment.
“Timely and selective hand picking is carried out at Kagumo wet mill. Cherry is delivered to the wet mill the same day it is picked. Cherry sorting is carried out at the wet mill prior to pulping. Red ripe cherries are separated from under-ripes, over-ripes and foreign matter. Processing utilizes clean river water (wet processing) that is re-circulated before disposal into seepage pits. Sun drying is done before delivery of the coffee to the dry mill for secondary processing.
Farmers in Aguthi planted their coffee trees in the early 1950s. The co-op has four wet mills: Gaaki, Thageini, Gititu and Kagumo. Aguthi is located on the highly productive western slopes of Mt. The production of Kagumo wet mill currently stands at an average of 200,000 kg of cherry.
Farmers selectively hand pick red ripe cherries that are delivered for wet milling the same day. The parchment is then fermented, washed and sundried. Dry parchment is milled and bagged at Kofinaf mills, marketed by SMS Ltd. The coffee is then sold either through the Nairobi auction or direct to overseas buyers.”