Civil House Coffee: Rhino Media’s Love Letter to Kalamazoo
Kalamazoo’s specialty coffee industry is booming. Within the past year, the city has seen the opening of at least three new shops (Walnut and Park, Factory Coffee, and Fido Motors Cafe), as well as further expansion of its oldest coffee company, Water Street. This year will see the opening of yet another shop, Civil House Coffee.
Part of its parent company, Rhino Media, Civil House is a multi-roaster shop (they’ll feature coffee from Madcap, Quills, Proud Mary, and Verve) with a clean and modern look. The exquisite space was designed and built by Mack Chrisman, Civil House’s Director of Coffee. Chrisman’s attention to detail doesn’t end with his design of the space, but extends to his philosophy on how to make the best cup of coffee.
Having spent time in Nashville, Tennessee and learning from immersion in their coffee scene, Chrisman wanted to move back to his hometown and give people a coffee experience unique to Kalamazoo. This uniqueness comes from the aforementioned attention to detail Chrisman is passionate about.
“I think what’s going to set us apart is our commitment to coffee production,” he says, “the foundation of all that we do is coffee science.” This includes a high-end water filtration system that not only removes unwanted mineral content, but adds those essential to the perfect cup. He admits that, to many, this sounds like an unnecessary extra step, but is confident that once they experience Civil House’s coffee they’ll taste the difference.
According to Chrisman, this commitment to high-quality coffee is just a small part of what he believes will set Civil House apart from other shops in Kalamazoo. The crucial role Civil House hopes to play in the city is to be a place for community to thrive. “Civil House is meant to be a love letter to Kalamazoo,” he says, a place where the Rhino Media community can meet with the wider community and hear their stories. “People will be coming for that community and for the space… and they’re staying for the coffee.”
Civil House is located at 344 N. Rose Street. It will officially open its doors to the public on Friday, March 2nd at 7 am, with an Art Hop event running from 6 to 9 pm. Regular hours will be 7 to 7, Monday through Saturday.