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Strong and black, triple foamy extra hot skinny dirty (fill in the blank) and everything in between -- Berkeley's got your cup. Alfred Peet arrived in Berkeley in the mid-60s with new ideas about how coffee should taste. And that changed everything. Peet's Coffee & Tea is to Berkeley what that mermaid logo brand is to Seattle, and the original Peet's store is a landmark in the Gourmet Ghetto district. Visit it on your own, or with the culinary walking tours that happen twice a week.
Mr. Peet's vision for the optimal care and roasting of the coffee bean continues to set the measure for Berkeley coffee shops. In fact, it is reported that the city has more coffee shops per capita in the U.S. -- true that! Here are a few of the next-wave roasters brewing in Berkeley:
This non-profit coffee org promotes the wellbeing of the SF Bay Area refugee community by providing job training and employment as baristas. Great organic coffee, too.
In the Lorin District, Alchemy is a worker-owned cooperative that makes exceptional coffee, one cup at a time.
A visit to Fourth Street's Artis is a coffee journey from seed to sip. In-store tasting, brew-demos, roasting, live music and pure coffee artistry.
An elegantly chill coffee bar in the Lorin District with flavorful joe and house-made chai worthy of a Himalayan tea house.
The Elmwood District's Timeless Coffee brews hand-roasted coffee, expertly crafted espresso drinks, decadent chocolates, and artisanal baked goods.
In 1966, right on the hells of the Free Speech Movement, Alfred Peet began to brew another born-in-Berkeley revolution, this one called "Craft Coffee." Visit the original Peet's Coffee retail space in Berkeley's Gourmet Ghetto, where there's a small but mighty museum paying homage to Mr. Peet. Sip, inhale, slurp and experience where American coffee culture first caught on.