The Coffee shop I decided to go to is called @ Union. this coffee shop is located in Alston Mass, just east of Boston. It is called @ Union because its location is very close to Union Square. As you can see on the map below, it is conveniently located right down the street from a green line T stop. This area is very highly populated with young people and a very exciting night life.
The below picture shows a map of the Alston area and all of the Dunkin Donuts that are around. the red pins represent Dunkin Donuts in the area, and the blue arrow represents wear @ Union is located. As you can see they have a lot of competition with large coffee shop chains like Dunkin Donuts.
The above picture shows @ Union from the outside. On the busiest of days, customers will line up on the sidewalk along these windows waiting to be served.
As you can see from the picture below, this coffee shop takes a lot of pride in their appearance. Dark wood covers the floors and tables and art hangs along the walls to give this place a very comforting and cozy setting. A dining room is set up for customers coming in to sit down and eat breakfast, while a stand is set up in the front of the restaurant for customers who just want to grab something quick on the go.
This picture show the menu you will be given if you decide to sit and dine in. as you can see it is very coffee oriented. Pretty much this entire first page of the menu is specialized coffee drinks.
@ Union take a lot of pride in the coffee they sell. For that reason the owners made the decision 5 years ago to start roasting their own coffee. the picture below shows the roaster that is I the back room of @ Union along with a sample of the roasted coffee.
This coffee is also 100% certified organic. I'm sure with the growing demand for healthy, preservative free foods this is drawing in a lot of customers for @ Union. It is very well advertised throughout the restaurant.
The coffee here comes from both Brazil and Columbia. as shown on the map below, Brazil (green) is the biggest country and most eastern part of the continent, while Columbia (blue) is the most northwest part of the continent. the coffee is also bought from farmers through a Certified Fair Trade agreement. This means that the farmers are being paid the money they deserve for the amount of work they a putting into growing these crops.
The Coffee is also 100% Arabica. Because coffee is the main theme of the restaurant, they want to sell the best coffee that they can. Therefor Arabica is sold instead of Robusta.
I very much enjoyed my experience at @ Union. It was the first coffee shop I have ever been too but it most certainly will not be the last. The atmosphere was delightful, most everybody in the place was sitting and conversing with family and friends while other people were sitting with laptops conducting business over a cup of coffee.The staff was very friendly and willing to help out with any of the questions I had regarding this assignment. The food was also delicious. Although the ice coffee that I ordered was not strong enough for my liking and it seamed to be watered down. I highly recommend @ Union if you are ever in the area.