Crown Street Roasting Company

Michael and Sarah Bigney
Michael and Sarah Bigney

Article Contributed by
Mallery Rockwell

The Start of Something Brew
Michael and Sarah Bigney can’t wait for the grand opening of their new business, Crown Street Roasting Company, August 1. Michael grew up in Greenhurst and roasted coffee for a couple of years, while Sarah moved to Jamestown to attend Jamestown Business College in 2007, and the two met while working together. They decided to combine their passion for roasting coffee and business skills. They worked with the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation and the city to help make their dreams become a reality.

Crown Street Roasting Company is classified as a coffee shop, so while they will serve light foods like pastries and cookies, their main focus is on brewing the fresh coffee. Crown Street Roasting Company stands out from other coffee shops because they roast their own beans, so everything is their brand. “We roast the beans locally, the drinks are made locally, our pastries are local,” Sarah said.

At the front of the spacious shop, a 25-foot bar spreads across the window, made of wood from an old bowling lane named the Fountain Bowl. “We’re trying to incorporate things for the community and within the community and I think there’s really something for everybody,” Sarah said.

After looking at several spots in Jamestown, Michael and Sarah decided that the building on West Third Street was the perfect place to start their business. After four months they renovated everything from the ground up, clearing out previously existing offices and putting in brand new flooring.

“We love roasting coffee, we’re passionate about it and we like learning about it,” Sarah said. “We hope that when people come in here they’ll have that same excitement too.”

The Bigneys are looking to expand wholesale to restaurants outside of the Jamestown area, so they can offer their beans in outlying coffee shops without having to compete with local shops. “We definitely want to offer it to other people in other areas as well,” Michael said.

More Than Meets the Eye
Getting a delicious cup of coffee takes much more than the press of a button. “The average coffee drinker comes in for the coffee but we represent that entire line of where this coffee’s come from,” Michael said. “We have a big responsibility to serve and to make sure that we’re honoring the work of the farmers in Brazil, and a lot of that responsibility weighs on this end.”

Hawaii is the only state in the US that has the climate to grow coffee, so it’s all imported from other countries. “The average coffee drinker doesn’t think about where the coffee comes from or the process that it goes through in order to have it,” Sarah said. “We have not only the farmers but the people who run the distributions and the roasting and then the cup of coffee, so it’s a really long process in order to get a cup,” Sarah said.

Fresh As Can Be
The Bigneys have a brand new roasting machine where they will make their coffee fresh on the spot. The beans get loaded into the hopper, which roasts the beans for 10-12 minutes. They open a hatch that pours them into a cooling tray, and the process starts all over again. A window peers into the roasting room, so everyone can watch the process of the fresh coffee being made.

Crown Street Roasting Company has their beans imported from six different countries. These include Peru, Sumatra, Brazil, and decaf from Columbia, Guatemala and Ethiopia. These beans will probably change from time to time based on harvest cycles and other factors.

“We’re not anything like the national chain stores. We are exactly like a craft brewery because we have craft coffee,” Sarah said. “We fresh grind the beans for each cup of coffee, each espresso drink is made to order on an individual basis. We don’t push a button and fill your cup and it’s ready. It is a craft, it is a specialty.”

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