The Birth of Bassline Coffee
This all starts with my love for coffee and entering what's considered the "3rd wave" of coffee in the US and beyond. The 1st wave was canned coffee like Folgers and Maxwell House that had a basically infinite shelf-life. I remember downing a cup early in my life, getting ready for school and puking, nuff said.
The 2nd wave caught me in college with Peets; I had already been assistant manager of one of the “cool cafes” in Ashland OR, and I remember a Peets popping up once on my way to the mountain. It was a regular stop for me as the flavor and intensity was huge and new. 2nd Wave meant relatively “fresh” dark roasted beans that could sit on a shelf for a month or two, but you sort of knew the region(s) they came from and maybe could start to taste the differences.
I tasted my first sip of the current 3rd wave while visiting a close friend in Portland who took me to Stumptown, which to this day, is still a favorite. I was so amazed with all the flavor in that Stumptown latte that I asked them if they knew where I could find anything comparable where I lived: the Bay Area. They told me about their friends who were starting Ritual and how they were working on opening a cafe on Valencia Street in the Mission District in SF. I had to wait patiently for a few months before they opened, but it was well worth it as they remain at the top of my “consistently good 3rd wavers” list. The 3rd wave is all about fresh, light roasted coffee where you can taste a variety of unique notes including citrus, dried fruit, and even candy. Purchasers seek out individual farms and have trained co-ops to sort and grade the beans for best profile and terroir notes.
Spending so much time at Ritual (Flora Grubb was very close to my work) talking coffee and brew methods, led me down the very long path of perfecting my own pour-over coffee techniques that brought out the best of the beans I liked. Then came home roasting for a few years to the point I usually preferred my roasts to that of the numerous professional roasters high on my list. This started me daydreaming about owning a cafe and roasting professionally down the road.
Now we come to Covid-19 squashing what I was building with my new sound company, Waveworks. Not that I’ve quit sound at all, but I did have a bit more free time to research and start roasting on a commercial level. So far it’s been more of a money suck than I was hoping, but I’m really happy about what we’re bringing to the table in a crowded marketplace of great coffee. There’s not a lot of roasters doing different roast levels with the flavor of what I feel are the best coffee beans available.
We are new and learning, but at the same time, can offer something for every kind of coffee lover with a truly unique cup. The reception and support our coffee's received has been overwhelmingly positive and made this pursuit worth it. I love all the stories that coffee creates, now one of mine is creating the best cup for you. Hopeful we can enjoy it all together with maybe some coffee and music together soon too!
Coffee & music lover, and founder of Bassline Coffee (and Waveworks AV)