On any given day, you’ll find Jeff Sloan, a recent Pittsburgh transplant, sampling roasting coffee beans at KLVN Coffee Lab. His most recent batch is from Honduras.
It might be a usual workday for the head roaster and green coffee buyer, but it’s an unusual scene unfolding in Munhall. KLVN Coffee Lab is the borough’s first coffee roaster.
“I think there’s a need in the area,” says Will Humphrey, owner and Fox Chapel native. “I like the idea that we are a part of a kind of revitalization. I think this area has a lot of character.”
Their roastery, located at 810 Ravine St., was originally a church turned school and community center. After that, Stay Tuned Distillery made their mark there until KLVN moved in this past year.
While the roastery isn’t open to the public just yet, KLVN will make their grand entrance during Pittsburgh Specialty Coffee Week. On October 21, KLVN will debut what Humphrey calls a “killer light-roasted single-origin, thoughtfully-sourced coffee” at Pittsburgh Filmmakers Melwood Screening Room’s cafe in Oakland alongside the screening of the documentary “A Film About Coffee.”
The Screening Room’s café will be the first of several coffee shops KLVN plans to open in the city in order to truly bring the experience of their coffee—from farm to cup—full circle.
“We want to celebrate the experience of coffee,” says Sloan. “That experience is a very complex process. We want to immerse ourselves as fully as we can and have that energy saturate the brand and café experience.”
According to Humphrey, KLVN’s focus is to curate and share this complex process with their customers: “the experience sourcing the coffee, the people farming it, the adventure the coffee takes to arrive on our doorstep, and the transformation that it undergoes in order to make it a product that we can present.”
KLVN’s method of bringing this experience to the customer draws on the first law of thermodynamics that states energy can’t be created or destroyed in a chemical reaction, says Humphrey. KLVN Coffee Lab saw it fitting to name their company after Lord Kelvin, the father of thermodynamics.
KLVN is also made up of Thommy Conroy and Kira Hoeg of Bloomfield’s 4121 Main, a gallery showcasing fine art, flowers and a high-end coffee bar. Humphrey is the nephew of Charlie Humphrey of Pittsburgh Center for the Arts.
Their website is still under construction so check back later for more.