March 15, 2022
Phoenixville's Bluebird Distilling is set to expand with an all-day coffee and cocktail bar called Char & Stave Coffee in Ardmore on Monday, March 21.
The concept comes from Bluebird's owner and master distiller Jared Adkins, with the help of head distiller Scott Gilbert who has over 15 years of experience roasting coffee. Char & Stave's signature roasts will use a similar method to the one utilized at the distillery, which specializes in small-batch whiskey, rum, gin and other spirits.
"The name 'Char & Stave' comes from the barrels we use for aging our bourbon and now, coffee," said Adkins. "The stave is one of the 21 pieces of oak that make up a barrel, and the char is the inside layer of the barrel that holds the residual vanilla, bourbon, and spice notes."
Along with its signature Four Grain Bourbon Aged Blend, Char & Stave will feature five other roasts.
• Bluebird Morning: Light roast with citrus, floral, honey notes
• Everyday: Medium roast with notes of chocolate, candied fruit
• Workout Fuel: Medium roast, high caffeine blend
• Dark Voodoo: Dark roast with notes of deep chocolate, dark fruit, and molasses
• Adventure Espresso: Medium roast with notes of chocolate and citrus
Seasonal and limited rotating brews will also be offered, starting off with "Yirgacheffe." Sourced from Ethiopia, the blend has notes of lemon, honey and peach. Another rotating roast will be "Cajamarca," which comes from Peru and includes hints of caramel, red grape and cane sugar.
In addition to Char & Stave's drip coffee selection, the café will feature an $8 "Drips and Drams" menu. The coffee-style cocktails include the "Char & Stave," made with barrel-aged espresso, bitters, sugar, and orange peel; the "Espresso Tonic," made with espresso, agave, tonic, citrus, and thyme; the "Café Julip," made with cold brew, mint, sugar, and crushed ice; and the "Flora & Fauna," made with espresso, lavender, milk, and black pepper.
For those looking for a coffee-free cocktail, there are two additional offerings. The "Matcha Mojito" is composed of house-made matcha, mint, sugar, lime, and seltzer, and the "Chai Blossom" is made with house-made chai, orange, milk, and seltzer.
The 42-seat lounge will shift to a cocktail bar in the evening, featuring a full menu of traditional and coffee-inspired cocktails, as well as mocktails.
The coffee-inspired cocktail menu includes:
• Ardmore Old Fashioned: Four Grain Bourbon, light roast, Angostura bitters, orange peel
• Char + Stave Martini: Bluebird Vodka, espresso, toasted cardamom
• Rittenhouse Manhattan: Straight Rye Whiskey, dark roast, sweet vermouth, Angostura bitters, chocolate bitters, Luxardo cherry
• Chicory-Char: Straight Rye Whiskey, chai, anise, Peychaud's and Chicory-Pecan butters, lemon peel
• Rising Sun: Sugarcane Rum, mint, lemon, honey, green and chamomile tea
• Caffe Negroni: Juniperus Gin, cold brew, bitter Italian soda, orange peel
The café at 21 Rittenhouse Place will have both bagged whole beans and Bluebird Distilling's spirit offerings for sale. Whole bean coffee will be also be available for purchase at the Phoenixville distillery.
Bluebird has tasting rooms located in The Shops at Liberty Place at 1625 Chestnut St., and in Old City at The Bourse Building at 111 S. Independence Hall.
Char & Stave Coffee will be open Monday through Thursday, from 7 a.m. until 11 p.m., Friday from 7 to 12 a.m., Saturday from 8 to 12 a.m., and Sunday from 8 a.m. until 11 p.m.