Coffee lovers have a zillion options to grab a cup of coffee in San Francisco, but Equator Coffee’s newest location will trump all the others. Its new Round House Café has a nearly 360 degree view of the Golden Gate Bridge, Pacific Ocean and San Francisco Bay.
Round House is part of Equator’s ongoing partnership with the national park system. Its first national park location opened in Fort Mason Center in 2017, followed by outlets in the Presidio and the Warming Hut at Crissy Field. Visitors will soon be able to get cozy with a cup of Equator coffee on the notoriously windy Alcatraz Island. But you can’t top the new Round House location in Golden Gate National Recreation Area, which is one of the most visited sites in the national park system.
“The Golden Gate Bridge is the span that connects us, and the revitalized Round House is where we’ll meet,” said Chris Lehnertz, President & CEO of the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy. “We are delighted to work with Equator Coffees, an organization that reflects our values of putting people and communities first.”
Equator has long played an important part in Bay Area coffee culture. The company started in a Marin County garage in 1995, when Helen Russell and Brooke McDonnell decided to roast coffee themselves. They wanted their coffee to focus on quality, sustainability and social responsibility.
In 1997, McDonnell made her first trip to Guatemala to study coffee production at its origin. In this case, the Chipicay Cooperative. “The first visit to see the land and the people who grow coffee filled me with a sense of wonder, gratitude and privilege to be a small part of the coffee world,” she said.
In 1999, Equator became one of the first fair trade certified roasters, sourcing its coffee from the Soppexcca Cooperative in Nicaragua. In 2008, the company decided to buy its own coffee farm in Volcan, Panama. Equator became the first B Corp certified coffee roaster in California in 2011, and in 2016 was the first LGBTQ-owned business to win National Small Business of the Year from the Small Business Administration.
“Equator Coffees will be a beloved addition to the Golden Gate Bridge Visitor Plaza, which was transformed in 2012 for the Bridge’s 75th anniversary,” said Paolo Cosulich-Schwartz, spokesperson for the Golden Gate Bridge Highway & Transportation District. “We hope visitors will use this space to meet, learn about the history of the Bay Area’s most iconic landmark and enjoy their visit to the Bridge with a warming beverage from Equator.”
Images via World Centric