While working at a café in Peoria, Illinois, the duo—one a manager at the shop, the other a barista—had the idea to create their own roasts in-house, which would, they wagered, bring out the beans' natural complexities and result in a better cup of coffee.
A pair of regulars at the shop, Steve and Haly Elmore, shared this dream. The foursome grew close, bonding over their mutual longing for handcrafted arabica aromas, and in 2011 the decision was made: they'd band together and open their own shop, thirty-thirty Coffee Co., and roast each and every bean themselves.
Located in Central Illinois, just an hour outside Springfield, the historic town of Peoria is the largest city on the Illinois River, yet it embodies a sense of community that thirty-thirty's owners have set out to embrace (and keep caffeinated). Along with the custom roasts, thirty-thirty Coffee Co. makes all of its syrups in-house, too, to pair alongside an elegant menu of pour-overs, French press brews, and espresso drinks. Seated at one of the shop’s reclaimed barn wood tables, you can see thirty-thirty’s roasting equipment behind a big glass window. That equipment is the reason this shop initially opened—a working monument to the owners' artisan dream—but roasting everything in-house has a practical bonus, too: it lets the team control the bean’s intricacies throughout every step of production, from the moment the beans spill from the bag to when you take your first sip of a macchiato.
As an Illinois Made maker, thirty-thirty works to spreads the love of artisan coffee throughout the community, too. The team helps smaller businesses find their footing in Illinois' bourgeoning craft coffee scene by distributing their roasts to shops that don't have the same capacity to roast in-house. Many of the roasts can be found online—customers even include people in Seattle—but nothing beats the intimate experience of sitting down in the same shop where four coffee aficionados made their first roast they could truly call Illinois Made.
Discover more Illinois artisans at Illinois Made.