New coffee shop opens in Hunts Point

If you are a coffee fanatic and live in the Bronx, you may want to visit Hunts Point.

On Tuesday, May 24, Birch Coffee held a grand opening celebration after opening Birch Coffee House, their first coffee shop location in the Bronx at 866B Hunts Point Avenue, giving Hunts Point its first coffee shop in 40 years.

The coffee shop offers espresso, cappuccino, latte, mocha, hot cocoa, chai latte, tea and cold brew, better known as iced coffee. A variety of muffins, donuts, scones, croissants and even granola bars are also available.

The shop’s design features trendy exposed brick walls, reclaimed barn wood and stone countertops, which were donated by the nearby Colonna Marble Company.

The shop is located near the 2, 5, and 6 train subway stops and will be near the Hunts Point Metro North station, which is slated to open in 2018.

For the next two weeks, the coffee shop will have a soft grand opening and will be open from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.

“With the opening of this coffee shop, now everybody in this neighborhood has access to great coffee,” said Jeremy Lyman, co-owner of Birch Coffee. “This is a new experience and we are very excited to have our business located in this area.”

“I wasn’t very familiar with the Bronx initially, but I knew that this would be a great area for this business if we did it right,” said Paul Schlader, co-owner of Birch Coffee. “There has been a need for a coffee shop here for a long time, so there was no hesitation and no question that we wanted to pursue an opportunity here – it was a no-brainer.”

“It certainly wasn’t easy, but we (Jeremy and I) couldn’t have asked for better partners and supporters in StartUp Box, the Majora Carter Group and the NYC Hispanic Chamber of Commerce – and these are organizations that know this neighborhood as well as anybody,” Schlader added.

“Residents and businesses in this area have dreamed of having a coffee shop in the neighborhood for a long time,” said Majora Carter, a local resident and founder of StartUp Box and the Majora Carter Group, both partnering organizations of Birch Coffee which are based in the neighborhood.

“This is not just a coffee shop – it’s one of the best rated coffee businesses in NYC, and that’s what the Bronx deserves and needs to progress,” she said.

“Getting the highest quality coffee shop possible for this area was a top priority,” said James Chase, president of StartUp Box. “The south Bronx usually gets ‘second best’ compared to other boroughs, but this is a different story and residents have shown an incredible amount of support towards this new business.”

“From the time I first heard about this idea, I knew that we had to get this coffee shop in the neighborhood,” said Sulma Arzu-Brown, another local resident and director of operations for the NYC Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. “When a business like this comes into a neighborhood, it empowers that community in a big way. ”

Arzu-Brown also added that she felt a special connection with Birch Coffee House after finding out that many of their coffee components are imported from Honduras, her native country.

Birch Coffee was started by Lyman and Schlader in October 2009, on 27th Street between Madison and 5th avenues.

They currently operate seven other locations, including shops in the Flatiron District, West Village, Upper East Side, Upper West Side, Murray Hill, lower Manhattan and a 4,000 square-foot roast house in Long Island City, where the coffee is processed.

Reach Reporter Steven Goodstein at (718) 260-4599. E-mail him at sgoodstein@cnglocal.com.

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