Amid the backlash from big chain coffee shops, emerges the new coffee boutique Hope and Union. Nestled in the gentrified Cannonborough neighborhood, they plan to offer their customers an unparalleled coffee experience. Each cup of coffee is handcrafted using the mid-century Chemex brewing method, which slows down the brewing process resulting in a richer cup of coffee. The esteemed coffee roaster Intelligentsia only selects single-origin beans that are in season. A 12 oz. cup of their house blend only costs $2.57, with prices varying based on seasonal availability.
The space is located at 199 St. Phillip St. inside a completely restored Charleston single home. Owner John Vergel de Dios designed the interior, which combines modern and traditional themes. The walls are decked out with photography by Los Angeles and New York based artists such as Danny Zapalac, Sam Kweskin, and Joe Zorilla. Seating includes communal tables, a standing espresso bar, and outdoor cafe tables for meeting and greeting.
Husband and wife team John Vergel de Dios and Harper Poe moved to Charleston from New York in late 2008. Dios's background in graphic design for various ad agencies helped in creating the whimsical logo for the company, a billy goat with a balloon tied around it. "These farmers would find goats running around and acting strange, and come to find out they'd been eating these coffee beans," Dios said. The balloon is a metaphor for coffee's ability to enlighten and lighten the load off your feet. The store opened on Black Friday and received a warm reception, considering that they're marketing has been nearly non-existent. They are also open to hosting private events, like book signings or small acoustic shows, in the future.