The building on the corner of Gates and Bedford Aves will soon house the CUP Cafe. Photo: Google Maps.

From the corner of Bedford and Gates Avenues, a new café will soon be loudly declaring: “Coffee Uplifts People.”

The “CUP” café, opening at the end of August, is being opened by the much-loved Brooklyn Roasting Company and radio personality Angela Yee.

Yee first teamed up with the company, and her two partners Tony Forte and Laron Batchelor, last summer to release a small line of coffee that urged people to get out the vote, Brooklyn Paper reports.

The success of the collaboration led the group to take the leap in opening a brick and mortar store, where the aim is introducing more minority and women-owned companies to the white world of coffee retail, Brooklyn Roasting Company CEO Jim Munson told Brooklyn Paper.

“They have been really great partners and historically coffee has been dominated by white people on the retail side and we are looking to help,” he said. “A part of our mission is to represent the character and characters that make up Brooklyn and we are excited to extend specialty coffee to underserved neighborhoods and underserved populations.” 

The store opening also marks an exciting step forward for Brooklyn Roasting Company, which filed for bankruptcy in October 2020 and had to close down two cafes. Although the bankruptcy case was later dismissed, the experience gave the company a chance to really come together and recalibrate, to the point where Munson said internally it was running much better than before.

“We are thrilled to have survived.

“At this point, we are on the other side of that and while it was difficult, it gave us a chance to really think hard about what we wanted to do going forward,” he said.

And it’s not just in Bed-Stuy Brooklyn Roasting Company will be growing. There are plans to open a new retail store in the new One Clinton high-rise in Brooklyn Heights, plus another location in Brooklyn and one in Manhattan.

Munson said the One Clinton store would be the first new retail store the company had opened in years, adding “that alone is huge news for us.”


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