Forget the Alamo. One of the coolest places in all of Texas is Southtown, San Antonio, composed of a series of largely tourist-free and neighborhoods just south of downtown. Southtown is real San Antonio, and it also may be the city’s most under-discovered dining hubs, featuring creative farm-to-table restaurants, a new wave of craft bars and some of the world’s best Tex-Mex.
Now Jose Carlos de la Colina, a native of Brownsville, is hoping to increase the culinary cache by creating one of the area’s first roasteries and craft coffee bars, White Elephant Coffee Company. De la Colina tells Daily Coffee News that the city does have some existing options for good coffee, but he says there is plenty of room for “a new coffee company to set up roots and have a strong presence.”
At the time of this writing, De la Colina was setting up shop with a Probat P12 12-kilo roaster in a flex-use industrial building at 1415 S. Presa St. in the heart of Southtown. For now, he plans to begin roasting, selling coffees online and building wholesale relationships locally. By later this fall, De la Colina says he plans to install a Slayer-made espresso machine and open a bar on-site.
“There has been an influx of people and new businesses in Southtown,” says De la Colina. “Our goal is to establish a strong presence in San Antonio for the highest quality coffee and introduce our name to the great people all over the coffee world.”
De la Colina says he decided to walk away from his career as a financial advisor in part because of his insatiable curiosity for all things coffee — specifically, all the steps from the farm to the cup that are required to maintain quality. While the current growth plan is step-by-step, De la Colina says he can envision multiple White Elephant retail outposts in the future, yet not so many that cup quality would be sacrificed.
Nick Brown is the editorial director of Daily Coffee News by Roast Magazine. Feedback and story ideas are welcome at email@example.com.