The Early Word: Kickstand Coffee, Williamsburg's First Coffee Bike

Kickstand sets up shop at McCarren Park.
Kickstand sets up shop at McCarren Park.
Mackenzie Schmidt

In our many caffeinated years, we've committed every crime known to coffee -- making old hot coffee into iced, reheating in the microwave, and mixing vintages (making new coffee over yesterday's lingering leftovers in the pot). We're not coffee snobs, and while the guys who founded Kickstand Coffee, Williamsburg's coffee shop on two wheels, probably are, there's nothing snooty about their operation.

The extremely portable business folds out Transformer-style from a bike-towed metal box to a surprisingly large, fully functional, tented food stand. Kickstand is currently camped out at Artists and Fleas in McCarren Park every Saturday, and will soon (with the proper license) assemble and serve all over the city.

Founders Peter Castelein, Neal Olson, and Aaron Davis use hand-picked local beans (literally, they probably just stopped by Gimme! on their bike) in cold-brewed or hot pour-over varieties. On Saturday they offered Stumptown (brewed in Red Hook) Guatemala iced and Café Grumpy Kenya hot, both for $2.50. Let's just say we are in a long-term relationship with the former and this weekend were convinced it may just be better iced. It's bright but not acidic, and naturally a little sweet, especially cut with milk.

The three proprietors, occupying a hut that should comfortably fit two, were poised behind a row of beaker-like pour-over brewers resting over a mesh drainage system and happily fielding questions about the old-fashioned technique as well as their eco-friendly initiatives: supporting local business and swearing off gasoline. We've seen our fair share of trendy food trucks, but bicycle-based cuisine like Kickstand's may just be the next wave.


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