A new coffee shop called Philz Coffee opened here in Los Gatos. It was an instant over night success. I hadn’t heard of it myself but apparently a lot of people already knew about this coffee chain from their other locations in the Bay Area. What’s so special about Philz Coffee? This is not your run of the mill coffee joint, no; this is a specialty coffee shop that doesn’t sell any espresso drinks, none. No lattes, cappuccinos, no latte macchiato, café Americano, no espresso drinks of any kind. They don’t even have an espresso machine here. This coffee shop only serves drip coffee – you know, the old fashioned kind, the kind that my parents made every morning while living in India. My parents called it filter coffee but it’s the same idea.
At Philz coffee every single cup of coffee is made especially just for you. No mass brewing here. You walk up to the bar counter where a barista takes your order. What coffee would you like they ask? There is a black board with tons of coffee options to choose from. You can choose from plain regular coffees from all parts of the world, to coffees with added spices like cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg – all individually added to each cup they make (I’m not talking flavored coffee like you find in the grocery stores). Then you choose how you want your coffee – black? With milk – light, medium or very milky? Then you choose the sweetness – no sugar, little, medium, or a lot? After you place your order the barista makes your cup of coffee with freshly ground beans, pours hot water through the filter, and does their magic to bring it all together to give you that perfect cup of coffee. They ask you to taste it, and then they adjust the flavor for you right there- want more milk? Or more sugar? Or you don’t like it? No problem, we’ll make another cup for you.
I went to Philz in Los Gatos last Saturday morning bright and early at 8am (early for the weekend that is). On this day the coffee shop was blaring Hindi music! I stopped and listened, and for sure it was Hindi music! This was upbeat Hindi music from Sharukh Khan movies. All the Philz employees where not a single one was Indian were jamming to Hindi music. It was funny 😄. I ordered a Philharmonic that is black coffee infused with cardamom and cinnamon. I went to pay the cashier, picked up a couple of scones and patiently waited for my bartender to announce that my drink was ready. When the coffee drink was complete – it was delicious. With whole milk, medium sugar, and topped with mint leaves – the coffee was perfect.
This is not a coffee shop where you can run in and run out with your coffee, no. You have to wait for that cup of coffee – drip coffee takes time to flow through the sieve. So when you go, be prepared to wait a bit for your coffee, but let me tell you, it will be worth it.
Philz coffee is doing very well here in the Bay Area. A San Francisco based coffee company, obviously they are doing something right because they have been slowly expanding all over the South Bay. Bay Area is coffee country! People live off coffee here, thrive on it, and socialize around it. In this area, coffee shops are like bars – people meet in coffee shops for everything from business, to social gatherings, to get some work done, and even just to read. At the same time people in the Bay Area are picky about their coffee. For Philz to be so successful, they are doing coffee right.
Philz Coffee in Los Gatos is one of many Philz in the Bay Area. They aren’t in every nook and corner like Starbucks or Peets, but Philz does have locations scattered throughout the Bay Area. If Los Gatos is not close by for you, I am sure there is a Philz Coffee somewhere near where you live. You can look for one near your neighborhood by checking their web site. Philz Coffee