Believe it or not, Moseley’s Java Lounge celebrates 10 years in business this month culminating in a celebration at Java Lounge on Saturday 28th February.
Java’s CEO Akram Almulad talks to Coffee Birmingham about the journey to date.
So, how did Java Lounge start?
Java Lounge was started with a small budget but with a big vision. Our humble beginnings started on King Edward Road in Moseley before moving to bigger premises five years later on the Alcester road where we trade from today. We had limited resources but always made coffee our focus. This has always been at the centre of everything. We built up a small but loyal group of customers who have followed us on this journey and have helped Java Lounge become what it is today.
We started off with a small single group coffee machine and basic grinders, where we developed our barista skills. Our mission statement has always been to deliver ‘your perfect coffee moment, every time’. We continued in this pursuit of delivering the perfect cup of coffee. This took us to many barista courses and seminars, learning about coffee from its beginning to the point it reaches the customer. We upgraded all our coffee equipment several years ago in order to help us reach the necessary level of quality and consistency. We now have a La spaziale S40 and have On demand grinders to help us achieve the perfect cup of coffee.
What about your passion for coffee?
We are passionate for coffee. This stems from our rich heritage coming from our country of origin, Yemen. Widely accepted as the birthplace of the first coffee plant purposely grown for consumption, Yemen was one of the first hubs of coffee culture, attracting philosophers, writers, artists, architects and poets to form a social and creative center of knowledge. Java Lounge aspires to encapsulate the essence of this tradition.
We linked up with an independent coffee roaster who shared our passion and had the expertise of roasting for almost 30 years. We have worked closely together for the past five years, maintaining the standard and quality of our coffee. Where we differ to many other coffee houses is that we personally have a hands on approach with roasting our coffee. We understand that coffee is a natural product that changes from batch to batch. We therefore work on a taste profile whereby we tweak our coffee constantly to achieve our unique flavours for our two house blends.
Tell us about some of your achievements
We have competed in the UK barista championships in the last 2 years where our Head Barista Omar Al-Sabahi fared really well and had a lot of good feedback from the judges.
We have become a niche supplier of quality coffee in the last couple of years where we supply exotic coffees, in particularly Yemeni Mocha Ismaili coffee, which is obtained directly from our shared coffee fields in Yemen.
We have continued re-investing in the business over the last 10 years. We opened our basement area in 2011, and carried out a major refurbishment at the end of 2013. Within the refurbishment we put together the Java Lounge coffee story, which was designed as a large mural explaining and educating customers about the coffee they are drinking.
It has been an emotional roller coaster, but it has definitely been worth it.
What have you seen change around you in Moseley and Birmingham?
We recall a time when we first started when people were coming in asking for instant coffee, we have come a long way from that now. We have seen an influx in brilliant independent businesses particularly in independent coffee houses with a really good standard of coffee. As a city, Birmingham has embraced coffee culture and I believe we have some of the best coffee houses in the country.
In Moseley the same has happened, it has developed into a coffee hub. We feel proud to have played a key part in this.
What the future holds for Java Lounge?
We are currently in the process of opening our second store on the Colmore Row in Birmingham City Centre. We have launched our own brand of coffee packs selling our 2 popular house blends and also selling our exotic Yemeni Mocha coffee.
Details of the celebration on the 28/02/15? / Any deals or offers to commemorate the anniversary?
We are preparing to celebrate our 10 year anniversary on Saturday 28th February 2015 between 9am – 9pm. We will be giving out cake and finger foods including coffee samples of our single origin coffee for all to enjoy. We will also be selling some 10 year anniversary mugs to commemorate the occasion.
Coffee Birmingham congratulates Java Lounge on getting to ten years. Here’s to the next ten years! For more information on Java Lounge us on our website: www.javaloungecoffee.com