Rise Brewing Co., best known for its widespread line of RTD canned coffee products, has opened its first standalone retail cafe in New York City. The flagship RBC location is the company’s fourth outlet overall, but is the first to exist outside of any other retail experience — it’s first three being in partnership with a deli, a luggage store and an apparel shop, respectively.
The compact coffee bar now open on New York’s Lower East Side seats roughly 10 people and saves additional space behind the counter through its unconventional drink preparation method. The bar serves the same products found in its cans, either individually or in crafty combinations. Meanwhile, a proprietary system that draws cold coffee from refrigerated kegs has the option for flash heating for patrons looking for a hot drink.
“It comes out the temperature of hot coffee, but it’s still nitro and it’s still cold brew, and it’s really delicious,” Rise Brewing Co. CEO and co-founder Grant Gyesky told Daily Coffee News about drinks served fresh over the counter at the new shop.
Rise Brewing Co. COO Melissa Kalimov told DCN that the company continues to eschew espresso and other brewing formats while remaining true to its brand identity.
“That’s what’s attractive about the flash heater,” said Kalimov. “It allows us to offer both hot and cold, while really staying true to our core mission and our core values, which are ‘all nitro’ and ‘all organic.'”
With its same roasting partner still going strong and production continuing at a facility in Stamford, Connecticut, RBC is hoping to further expand the brand through the in-store experience. Reflecting the design on the cans, a painted sunrise logo beams from the wall behind the counter, rising up from behind a painted mountain range indicating the mountainous regions in Peru where beans from its core coffee are grown.
The front of the counter has a bold red band along its top, reminiscent of the red band that indicates the flavor of its Original Black RTD canned product. Offerings at the shop include tasting flights of all flavors also available in cans, as well as some “fun flavor combinations,” such as Nitro Black and Tan, a combination of the company’s newest product, an Oat Milk Latte, with its classic black. Customers are free to order off a menu or request their own combos.
“One of the things we’re most excited about is having a place for customers to sit and engage, and really walk through the story rather it being a grab-and-go window,” said Kalimov. “Not that we don’t love the grab-and-go window. That will continue to be a big part of who we are and where you see us. This is just a moment to have a slightly bigger presence.”
Since the company produces its own oat milk, there remains the possibility of developing that oat milk into its own standalone product, according to Gyesky. More immediate an idea is to potentially capitalize on the new shop’s liquor license.
“We do have the ability to put together an evening or into-the-night offering that has an alcohol component to it as well,” said Gyesky.
The flagship Rise Brewing Co. nitro coffee bar is open now at 79 Delancey in Manhattan.
Howard Bryman is the associate editor of Daily Coffee News by Roast Magazine. He is based in Portland, Oregon.