ANN ARBOR - Roasting Plant Coffee opened its newest shop six weeks ago on 312 S. State, and so far it's been a strong start.
With eight locations across the U.S., including a shop in Detroit, it hopes to make its mark in Ann Arbor. Situated right across from the University of Michigan, it's quickly become a place where students hang out and study. There's plenty of space, with a lower level and an upper level and it's open from 7 a.m. - 11 p.m.
Seating on the main level (Photo: Meredith Bruckner)
So, what sets it apart from other coffee shops? Manager Mo Zeitoun says the secret is in the beans.
“We source our beans from different farms and we get them un-roasted. Then every hour or so we roast in this roaster – its patented," Zeitoun explained. This system is called the Javabot, and it was developed by the company's founder, an industrial engineer. "Once you order a cup of coffee you get your beans roasted and brewed fresh. You actually get a nice layer of crema on top – it looks like cream, that’s how fresh it looks. It’s hard to get that anywhere else.”
Coffee beans ready for roasting (Photo: Meredith Bruckner)
If you look closely, you can see that their beans have a greenish hue - that's because they are still fresh. If you look closely, you can see the beans, stored in clear tubes, being 'flown' to the roaster via bursts of air. According to Roasting Plant's website, roasted coffee becomes stale after 7 to 10 days, so they only serve cups of coffee made from beans at peak flavor.
Zeitoun says Roasting Plant Coffee has been a hit with students. “For the past 6 weeks, all we have is students videotaping everything, taking pictures, wanting to introduce it to their classmates. They love the concept, they love the technology, they love the coffee. They say the coffee is unbeatable.”
Roasting Plant serves up fresh pastries, like croissants with za'atar (Photo: Meredith Bruckner)
Jason Cooper, construction manager at Oxford Companies, the firm behind the brokerage, construction and property management of Roasting Plant, described the process to flip such an old property.
“The challenge was to completely re-purpose the 125-year-old building while maintaining its historic character. Our construction team turns around a lot of office space, so it was refreshing to dive into a high-tech and complex build-out.”
The transformation on the 4,000-square-foot space began in April.
As for their new home on State, it is a goal realized. “We’ve always wanted to being Ann Arbor. We’re excited and happy to be here – it’s an awesome community,” said Zeitoun.
(Photo: Meredith Bruckner)
(Photo: Meredith Bruckner)
To learn more about Roasting Plant Coffee, visit their website.
Know of another cafe or restaurant opening in Ann Arbor? Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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