A pop-up shop is a neat idea. Rather than needing to develop a customer base and a long-term, sustainable business model, an intentionally temporary espresso lab is free to focus on more eccentric interests, such as changing peoples’ perceptions about coffee and just having fun. I was lucky enough to get a tip (via Kaffeine via Fotopuur) about Sok Amsterdam, a Summer Espresso Lab run by several leading Dutch baristas.
When I stopped by Sander, two time Dutch barista champion, was on duty. He made me a delicious espresso and cappuccino from a Panama Los Lajones roasted by business partner Kees (who’s award winning aeropress recipe I’d already been experimenting with). The coffee (bright, sweet, acidic cherry) was as top notch as the Synesso espresso machine (the only operational one in Holland) it was made with.
However, my favorite part of the visit was just talking to Sander about their inspiration to start Sok, his personal coffee journey, and the danger of elitism and arrogance in speciality coffee. A refreshing perspective to be sure!
So if you’re in Amsterdam this summer, this is a place not to be miss.