Bean There Coffee Company the first South African roaster of Fairtrade-certified coffee and strives to make a sustainable difference in the lives of African coffee producers by sourcing high quality beans through ethical channels.
The Capetonian branch of Bean There is located in a bright, airy space on Wale, right at the heart of the CBD – the perfect spot to savour a great cup of coffee while enjoying some prime people-watching. According to owner Jonathan Robinson, Bean There views direct fair trade as a ‘hand up’ rather than a ‘hand out’, and that these practices extend beyond ethical purchasing – they grow and nurture long-standing relationships with their producers and try to make a difference in the communities it serves. In the meantime, they also manage to procure some pretty stellar single-origin coffee and roast it to absolute perfection, so you can rest assured that your espresso will be as tasty as it is humane.
THE IMPORTANT BITS
Where? 58 Wale Street, Cape Town City Centre. Parking can be problematic – there are a lot of businesses and restaurants in the vicinity and parking space comes at a premium. Be prepared to pay an hourly rate if you want to park close by (there is a secure lot on the corner of Buitengracht and Shortmarket if you can’t find on-street parking); or take a taxi or Uber if you want to avoid the hassle.
When? Monday – Friday: 07:30 – 16:00; closed on weekends and public holidays.
Who? Dyed-in-the-wool coffee lovers will adore Bean There. You’re not only contributing to a free and fair African coffee trade when you support this business, you’ll also get a good eyeful of the entire roasting process. Kids are welcome, but the shop opens up onto a rather busy street, so if you have a free-roaming toddler in tow it could get tricky. Free Wi-Fi is provided within reason and there are power outlets here and there, but Bean There isn’t really a ‘settle in to work all day’ kind of spot. Great for coffee dates and workaday lunches with friends.
What? The coffee is without a doubt the star of the show here. There is a nice selection of sandwiches, cake, muffins and other little teatime treats, but the real reason you go to Bean There is to revel in some seriously good, beautifully roasted java.
MUST TRY: The Burundian Musema – a beautifully balanced coffee with a sweat honey aroma, delicate acidity, creamy body and tones of rich berry and dark chocolate. Buy some beans or ground coffee to recreate this jaw-dropping experience at home while you’re at it, and don’t you dare chuck any sugar in there! If you can’t make it to the store, you can also shop all of their products, as well as home brewing equipment, coffee machines, apparel and accessories online.