The Story

We will make amazing coffee the way we think it should be made. Full stop. Our way may not be for everyone, and that's okay: we're not making coffee for everyone...we're making coffee for you. For those who value craftsmanship and quality over convenience and cost - we're your huckleberry. --HCR

Why?

The 3 Simple Pillars

1-Hospitality

At Handsome, hospitality isn't a commitment, it's a core value. It's not something we strive for, it is something ingrained into our genes that we couldn't avoid if we tried.

2-Accessibility

We believe that great coffee should be simple, accessible, and amazing. The story wasn't written just for the insiders. Accessibility doesn't mean dumbing down coffee by offering too many options, selling out-of-season coffees or roasting darker than we prefer simply because there is demand for it. We're kicking the stool out from under the pretension that makes enjoying specialty coffee difficult. Our menu is clear, concise and limited to excellence.

3-Uncompromising Quality

We are three world-class professionals focused on one thing. Coffee is pretty much it for us. We believe in what we source, what we roast, and what we prepare. This means we might not have as many options in our coffee bar as you find in a lot of other places, but the ones we have are stellar.

We're going to make great coffee and be nice to you, and we promise:

You're going to love it.

Who

Tyler Wells

Tyler Wells

Name: Tyler J. Wells
Twitter: @tylerjwells
Birth Place: Elkins, WV

The one your mother warned you about...then ran off with.

From the hills of West Virginia, he's plied a trade or two-fixing Audis, running a bike messenger business, slinging hot dogs and cold beer. But it was coffee that tamed his wild spirit in 2005, bringing out the hospitable gentleman you would happen across today. Coffee led him eventually to Frank in Austin, Texas, where he served Intelligentsia Coffee so well the company brought him in to open its new shop in Pasadena, Calif.

Past Coffee Experience:

Frank, Austin, Texas
General Manager
Intelligentsia Coffee, Pasadena
Coffee Bar, General Manager

Why Coffee?

Because I (REALLY) love it.

Why Los Angeles?

It smells really good in the spring.

Hobbies

Riding bikes, lycra, cooking, making stuff happen, gardening, vanning

Memorable Food Experience

Moto, Brooklyn: Perfect atmosphere for the perfect day at just the right time.

Cultural Influences

The Big Lebowski, old hip-hop, NPR, straight-edge hardcore, beards, great hair

Michael Phillips

Michael Phillips

Name: Michael Phillips
Twitter: @1shot4theroad
Birth Place: Royal Oak, MI

A damned nice guy.

The legend goes like this: he left the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and put aside a freshly minted college diploma for an entry-level job packing coffee at Chicago's Intelligentsia Coffee in 2006. To say "Mike made good" is fair; to say his legend rivals Paul Bunyan back home is an out-and-out fabrication. Call it what you will, Mike rose to run Intelligentsia's training program, won the U.S. Barista Competition in 2009 and '10, and then took home the World Barista Championship for good measure. He's the only American to ever win the WBC, at least until we see who is crowned this June in Colombia. He's parlayed all this success into a well-worn passport, with trips to Brazil, Nicaragua, Iceland, London, Italy, Korea, Costa Rica, and Kenya, with a full slate of travel ahead for 2011. At Handsome, Mike will focus on coffee service.

Past Coffee Experience:

Intelligentsia Coffee, Chicago,
Director of Education
U.S. Barista Champion,
2009 (Portland)
2010 (Anaheim, Calif.)
World Barista Champion,
2010 (London)

Why Coffee?

Coffee is what worked for me. I have had more jobs than I can remember, and coffee is the only one that has engaged me so thoroughly. It's culinary, it's academic, it's technical, and there is still so much to learn.

Why Los Angeles?

I lived in the Midwest for 32 years now. Granted, I loved every second of that, but it's time for a change. For that change to be Los Angeles makes perfect sense, as I never would have dreamed it just a year or two ago. L.A. has more to it than I think anyone realizes, from food, art, and the outdoors to Tyler Wells and Chris Owens. I think the timing couldn't be any better for Handsome and Los Angeles to find one another.

Hobbies

In a perfect world I drive the Handsome Van on road trips, but every other time I leave the house it is on a bike. Having bike-commuted year round in Minneapolis and Chicago, I am looking forward to the more temperate weather of Los Angeles. My other big thing is plants; I can imagine California sunshine helping with that as well.

Memorable Food Experience

In London during the week of the World Barista Competition I was able to get into Milk & Honey with my friends Liz Clayton and Charles Babinski. To this date that eve is the most stellar representation of amazing ...

Chris Owens

Chris Owens

Name: Chris Owens
Twitter: @SingleOrigin
Birth Place: Houston, TX

Could thwart a mugger by means of his disapproving glare alone. Your boy is driven to succeed. His stated goal after joining Gimme Coffee in New York during 2004: "To become respected in the world of coffee." As a guy who seems to be great at anything he does-music engineering, Crossfit-it's not surprising he made it in the world of coffee. And how: his résumé reads like a who's who of specialty coffee in the U.S. But Los Angeles is the city that captured his beef-eating heart. At Handsome, Chris will focus on roasting.

Past Coffee Experience:

Gimme Coffee, Williamsburg
Lead Barista/Trainer
Counter Culture Coffee, Atlanta
Customer Relations Rep.
Ritual Roasters, San Francisco
Head Roaster
Intelligentsia Coffee, Venice
Coffee Bar, Educator

Why Coffee?

Because coffee is great! It's the beverage of the masses, yet can also be a true culinary experience.

Why Los Angeles?

Los Angeles is straight-up awesome. It's surprising in ways people looking in from the outside don't realize. And that doesn't even take into account the weather. People who like living here live without apology.

Hobbies

Bartending at the Varnish

Memorable Food Experience

I make an epic Texas Chili and an epic burger. Combine them and your brain will melt.

Cultural Influences:

The movies "The Goonies" and "Paris, Texas"