Darleen Scherer opened Supercrown, and to say she knows coffee would be a huge understatement. In 2002, she opened the city’s first third-wave coffee roaster, Gorilla Coffee. She was an executive council member of the Roasters Guild, and a judge in the U.S. Barista Championship.
After selling her part of Gorilla, Darleen set her sights on a roasting facility. After seeing a rundown former mechanic shop on Wilson Ave in Bushwick, it was just the beginning. Supercrown is anchored by a 1952 German Probat roaster and is the focal point as soon as you walk in. Darleen bought the machine from Alterra Roasters in Milwaukee and tells me it functions like a cast iron skillet, spreading even heat without burning those precious beans.
Speaking of coffee beans, Darleen has a special relationship with her sources. With a passion for sustainability and desire to make coffees of the world more accessible, piles of burlap sacks filled with green coffee wait to be roasted.
“We are a coffee roasting company first,” Darleen says.
While Darleen originally set out to have just a roasting facility, she decided to add on a cafe component (lucky for us).
“We were looking for a commercial space for the roaster and loved that Bushwick was the perfect hybrid of industrial and residential. Also, we love the creative vibe in Bushwick and are so happy to be part of that.”
You could describe Supercrown as minimalist with a few quirky touches – a bright pink accent wall, machinery in custom cobalt blue and pink, and a single piece of art commissioned by Darleen. All the better to focus on the coffee, here served in a variety of ways – including a coffee milkshake made with Ample Hills ice cream.
“While we love a pour over of a beautiful Colombia Micro Lot Coffee, we also love to share these coffees in playful ways that express a different side to coffee and open up people’s minds and palates.”
Come hungry to Supercrown, as the food measures up to the fantastic coffee. In addition to pastries from Bien Cuit and Baked, Supercrown teamed up with Roberta’s to create the “Magic Bialy:” caramelized onions, red pepper flakes (and optional prosciutto) topped with a poached egg. Expect these to sellout quick.
Since opening Gorilla almost 14 years ago, Darleen tells me the specialty coffee scene has changed enormously.
“In 2002 we talked about sustainability with fair trade coffees that guaranteed a premium over the market price. Now when we talk about sustainability and coffee quality in the same context, producers who have high-scoring, beautiful coffees get paid premium prices and this is what we highlight now in specialty coffee and what we are excited to share, particularly, at Supercrown.”
Sharing that love of quality coffee, Supercrown will offer a coffee subscription service. Each week, customers will receive a new batch of beans roasted in the Probat roaster. Pre-packaged coffee and subscriptions are also available for purchase in store.
Leave your laptop at home and enjoy the roasts at Supercrown.
Supercrown Coffee Roasters, 8 Wilson Avenue (Flushing Avenue), Bushwick, Hours: 7 am – 7 pm, 347-295-3161.