For a little over a year, Portola Coffee Lab has been educating, surprising and inspiring the caffeine-deficient in OC and beyond, prompting java lovers to hang up their Starbucks mugs for good. The Costa Mesa shop has surely won us over with its specialty beans and unique brewing processes–check out who earned the title of Best Coffee last year.
Now, the mad scientists behind the brand are taking things to the next level. In late August, husband-and-wife team Jeff and Christa Duggan will open Theorem by Portola Coffee Lab, a six-seat bar that will focus on “barista-driven craft coffee.”
Need a quick cup of joe to jump-start your day? Don't come here. This reservation-only corner, nestled adjacent to Portola's anchor location at the OC Mart Mix, is created for true coffee entusiasts, those who wish for a deeper understanding of the nuances of Portola's coffee and techniques. Think beautifully-presented coffee flights–not cardboard cup holders.
A few of Theorem's offerings include:
Barrel-Aged Kyoto Old FashionedPortola begins with its signature cold-brewed iced coffee and brews it with fermented Kintimani coffee from Bali. The slow-brewed iced coffee is slowed down even more as it is barrel aged in oak for six months. When served as an Old Fashioned, Baristas add a touch of muscavado simple syrup, house-made coffee bitters, and serve it all over ice with an orange peel garnish.Liquid-Nitrogen AffogatoPortola takes an untraditional approach to the traditional Italian Affogato, which is espresso poured over ice cream. Having made a name for itself by preparing every drink to order, ice cream will be following suit. Each order of ice cream will be prepared custom, in sight of the guest, with organic Strauss Family Creamery heavy cream and perfectly-calibrated grouping of ingredients with an ice cream base from N'Ice Cream, transformed into ice cream with the assistance of liquid nitrogen. To finish creating the Affogato, a fresh extraction of espresso will be pulled from Portola's Slayer espresso machine and decanted over the custom made-to-order ice cream.Coffee FlightYou've heard of a coffee tastings, but nothing like this. If previous tastings at Portola Coffee Lab could be considered a college-level course, these tastings would be grad school course material. The goal of the coffee flights is to educate customers through detailed comparison. Guests will have the opportunity to experience side-by-side comparisons of coffee with varying body, acidity, roast levels, processing methods, and elevation – to name a few. Coffee flights will vary daily and will be based on guest curiosity.
Visit Portola Coffee Lab for more details.
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