Lauren Pelletier 07.14.22
In celebration of Odeko opening a new warehouse in the Bay Area on the West Coast, read on to learn more about the history of coffee in San Francisco, the magic of community, and how Odeko’s supply and mobile ordering platform helps support small businesses.
A City Built on Coffee
Coffee has a rich history, and its long-standing relationship with the Bay Area is no different. During the Gold Rush between 1848 through 1855, coffee giants like Folger’s, Hills Bros., and MJB Coffee all got their start in San Francisco, quickly making coffee a major part of its economy by supplying port fishermen with much-needed caffeine. In the years following, coffee remained supreme, becoming the backbone of the wharf and factory workers’ diet throughout the industrial age. During the third wave of coffee roasting in the early 2000s, coffee experts Trish Rothgeb and Nick Cho helped steer the industry towards an artisan-driven approach, bringing the same energy to the Bay Area where they continue to influence coffee today.
Better beans and higher-quality brews started popping up around 2005 in San Francisco and the surrounding area, transitioning from your average cup of joe to a thoughtfully-crafted beverage brewed with single-origin beans direct from farmers. As the Bay Area continued to move towards higher-end coffee, the goal remained to keep the caffeinated beverage fun and accessible, taking care to highlight customer service in addition to flavor and technique. Today, the importance of fostering a community around coffee remains to be a widespread goal across the industry, with cafe and coffee shop owners spending extra time making their stores welcoming, and encouraging baristas to engage with their customers in hopes of making everyone feel like a regular.
As San Francisco, Oakland, and the surrounding cities look forward to the future, the demand for coffee continues to increase, and the need for consistent supply from vendors and farmers that provide high-quality ingredients remains to be necessary. That’s where Odeko comes in.
"Thank you so much for your help! We are so excited to see how much more efficient our ordering will become now that we are utilizing Odeko!" - Jenn and Jay of Soul Blends Coffee Roasters in Oakland, CA
Bringing Barista Supplies to SFO
As the Odeko team prepared to enter a new market, we began by learning as much as possible about the current landscape: where were we needed? What could we bring to the table? With ethics, quality and sustainability in mind, we started the week off with a series of plant-themed pop ups throughout the city, hosted in partnership with local plant boutique Planter Day. Here, customers could receive a free plant with their coffee order at participating locations, helping to encourage local foot traffic to try something new. Our plant pop ups give us the opportunity to work with local vendors while also bringing awareness that by partnering with Odeko, shops cut at least 33% of their carbon emissions. With the average shop receiving deliveries from 3 trucks a week, Odeko purposefully delivers at night with just one truck servicing an AI backed route, making supply delivery both efficient and impactful for our Bay Area partners.
Odeko partners with Planter Day for a series of pop-ups across the Bay Area.
In anticipation of our final event of the week, the Odeko team took to the streets and handed out sample bags filled to the brim with a selection of vendors and their best-selling products from our supply catalog. These sample bags included products from brands such as Tanzo Tea (known for their high quality ceremonial-grade matcha), Oatly, Califia, Pacific, and Minor Figures alternative milks, and recyclable Boxed Water. Each vendor partner in the Odeko catalog supports our goal of providing quality ingredients at a price that supports a healthy bottom line. Odeko’s selection of teas and alternative milks rely on close relationships with farmers all across the world, helping to create a more ethical farm-to-cafe pipeline without diminishing quality.
Building Community Through Coffee
Odeko partners with Espresso State of Mind to bring the Bay Area coffee
It’s no secret that coffee encourages people to come together, bond over shared experiences, and build communities. In the Bay Area, each pocket within this major city offers an entirely new cultural experience, made possible through generations of immigrants, historical events, musical trends, and more. Our Latte Art Throwdown in partnership with Espresso State of Mind saw a turnout of local coffee enthusiasts, with a pool of 32 baristas from all over San Francisco competing to pour the best latte art. The prize pool consisted of $500 and two all-expenses paid trips to Puerto Rico, and the baristas challenged themselves to try both classic and experimental techniques in an effort to impress our panel of judges. As the crowd cheered them on, baristas shared tips, traded industry secrets, and encouraged each other both behind the bar and in the crowd. With our winner Andy Liang and runner-up Matt Stevens crowned at the end of the night, the Odeko team had not only made a splash in the West Coast coffee community, but had cemented itself as the premier supply partner for coffee shops and cafes of all sizes in the Bay Area.
To learn more about Odeko and view our supply catalog, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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