By Chef / Roaster Jon Adams
About Rival Bros
Rival Bros is steeped in the East Coast tradition of bold, aromatic coffees but we prefer a lighter roast profile usually associated with West Coast stylings. Our coffee is approachable and was designed to be enjoyed all day long. We'll never tell anyone how to drink our coffee, but since we fall into the medium roast category and have selected high quality beans, many of our guests mention how smooth the coffee is.
There are a lot of similarities between cooking and coffee roasting. Coffee is a food and requires us to understand crop cycles, basic farming and a control of time and temperature during the roasting process. Operating a coffee bar feels very similar to restaurant life but the hours are a little easier! For me, coffee presented an opportunity to stay involved in the food world, work with my best friend and partner Damien Pileggi as well as be home at night with my family (I am married with three young boys).
Coffee Recommendations for Philadelphia
There are so many outstanding shops and roasters in Philly and I visit as many as I can but here are some of my favorites.
This is a great physical space and execution of coffee. It's been fun to watch them grow and develop as they've started roasting their own beans.
A lot of shops are dude heavy and masculine, but April and Elysa have opened a bright, clean cafe that offers the best selection of curated roasters (Dogwood, George Howell, etc).
I really dig their push on single origin coffees and the Master Street cafe is hella cool to hang out and watch them roast.
Chestnut Hill Coffee
This is my local shop when I'm home (I live in Mt Airy) and I really like their espresso. The baristas are friendly and engaging. Plus they know my kids' drinks.
ELIXR - 207 S Sydenham Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102 | T: 239.404.1730 | www.elixrcoffee.com
MENAGERIE - 18 South 3rd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106 | menageriecoffee.wordpress.com
REANIMATOR - 1523 East Susquehanna Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19125 | T: 215.425.5805
310 Master Street, Philadelphia, PA 19122 | T: 267.758.6264 | www.reanimatorcoffee.com
CHESTNUT HILL COFFEE - 8620 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19118 | T: 215.242.8600 | chestnuthillcoffee.com
Roaster Jon Adams
Adams is a coffee roaster and co-owner of Rival Bros Coffee in Philadelphia. He began his career in the coffee business as a part-time barista at Starbucks in 1997, but went onto become a chef. He worked at Brasserie Perrier, Salt, and Marigold in Philadelphia then Gilt in New York, eventually opening his own restaurant Snackbar. Named Best New Chef by Philadelphia Magazine.
“This is a fairly new coffee spot in the Fitler Square neighborhood. I often try to walk here before I get to work, order a cappuccino and a pastry (from the team from High Street). It's a place to enjoy the morning in Philadelphia.” - Chef Greg Vernick of Vernick
“I hated coffee until I started drinking theirs and now I'm that guy who yells at people for putting cream and sugar in their coffee. Their shop is awesome and they have bread and pastries from High Street. Not a ton of food, but enough that it is satisfying.” - Bartender Keith Raimondi of Townsend
“One guy is a chef and the other is a roaster. Their coffee is aces. It is small batch, hand-crafted and they don’t over roast it. It is made to be tasted, not to have cream and sugar poured all over it, even though I do! Don’t judge me!” - Chef Townsend Wentz of Townsend
2400 Lombard Street, Philadelphia, PA 19146 | www.rivalbros.com
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