A new coffee shop has local caffeine junkies buzzing. Tenfold Coffee offers a bean-to-cup approach that sets it apart from other Houston coffee shops.
Located behind Johnny's Gold Brick at 101 Aurora St., Tenfold features a clean, modern space that's anchored by a familiar-looking order counter topped with a gleaming espresso machine and a mix of tables. So far, so familiar.
When they look to the right, they'll see something a little more unusual — Tenfold's roastery and burlap bags filled with raw coffee beans. Sure, lots of coffee shops utilize locally roasted beans, but Tenfold allows customers to witness the process taking place.
Look to the left and they'll see a side room where proprietor Jacob Ibarra will lead classes to teach both Tenfold's wholesale clients and enthusiast customers the finer points of brewing and tasting coffee. He's uniquely suited to that role; the native Houstonian and Texas A&M graduate (aka, former student) has devoted his life to teaching others how to brew the perfect cup.
Ibarra spent 10 years traveling around the world to source coffee — first for cafes in Seattle and then in Melbourne, arguably the most coffee-obsessed city in the world. He brings all of that expertise to Tenfold, which means the beans the shop roasts and brews come from farms he's personally visited.
During a recent visit, Tenfold brewed a pour over made with natural coffee from a farm in Ecuador. As Ibarra explains, "natural" means the whole bean is allowed to dry in its husk before being shelled and roasted. The result is a brighter, more acidic coffee that drinks with a berry-like sweetness. In the near future, he'll roast beans of a different coffee species grown at the same farm, allowing customers to taste the difference between the two varieties.
In addition to all of the usual espresso beverages, Tenfold offers drip, pour over, and cold brew, plus a selection of teas. The shop has taps that Ibarra will use for local beers and at least one nitro tea. Eventually, the shop will add food; for now, it serves pastries from EaDo bakery Koffeteria.
The Heights is home to a number of coffee shops that serve excellent drinks. Tenfold makes the neighborhood an even stronger for destination for coffee lovers.