Number 4 Brewin’

Slap! Back of the unguarded net every time. Over and Over. Repeating my favorite Boston Bruin’s number, “Number Four….Bobby Orr….he shoots, he scores!”. As a young kid growing up in Boston, he was everyone’s hero. I think it was at this point that I became somewhat obsessed with all things numerical. And now, Bica is on the verge of realizing her Fourth Anniversary!

This Tuesday, the 19th of August, Bica will be serving free coffee all day to celebrate the day, toasting her loyal and devoted customers as well as her incredibly generous roasting partners. All of the coffees on Tuesday are donated by Bica’s roasters, and the menu truly speaks to her multi-roaster concept: Verve (Santa Cruz, @vervecoffee) Panama “Elida” and Colombia “Flor del Sur” Single Origin Espresso; Ritual (San Francisco, @ritualcoffee) Guatemala “El Pajal”; Four Barrel (San Francisco, @fourbarrel) Ethiopia “Qorema”; Intelligentsia (San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles, @intelligentsia) Ethiopia “Kurimi”; Heart (Portland, @heartroasters) Kenya “Miiri” and Stereo Blend Espresso; and Coava (Portland, @coavacoffee) Ethiopia “Meaza”. I would like to thank all of these world-class roasters for being so generous throughout the year, consistently providing groundbreakingly great coffees.

The BicaTeam cups coffee every Monday night, usually blindly, preparing for the coffees that are coming onto her ever-changing menu. It is the best way to fully understand the coffees, testing our palates, educating ourselves so we can speak with authority to our inquisitive customers, who come to Bica for the broad variety of offerings. The BicaTeam has really solidified over the last several months, and while I anticipate a few changes in the future, primarily due that thing called “college”, there is a unity to the team that seems to be passed from new to retiring team members, making it truly one BicaTeam. Case in point, Bica celebrated a milestone record week recently, a week that saw Andrew move on to grad school and Ben join the team. Torch passed. I could go on and on, but I would just like to thank the team members here: Cameron – no words; Justine – leading front and back of house with grace; Harper – stalwart bringing such coffee knowledge; Jonah – I have two reasons to miss you; Ryan – obvious passion and dedication to the craft; Emily – professional and zest for improvement; Morgan – so bright in so many ways; and Ben – so eager so fast! And I would like to mention some that have turned over this year: Andrew – never have I had any team member make such an immediate and positive impact; Taylor – Pacific Crest Trail….wow, just wow, do not be a stranger!; Claire – a short but very sweet stay; and Bryn – what a run, Brynner.

While my BicaTeam keeps me young at heart, Bica has been on a veritable freight train of growth. Regularly ticking over record breaking weeks this summer, I’ve felt something very different not just in performance, but in a sense of maturity. Bica is the first retailer to hold down 5701 College Avenue for more than three years for over a dozen years. Not sure if it’s cause or effect, but what I have most recently been feeling is what an integral thread Bica has become to the fabric of the local Rockridge community. I see my customers in all of the local restaurants, pass them on the street with a Bica cup in their hands, am often stopped to ask who the new barista is. I was told recently that the ‘hood would change without Bica….not for the good. That was a tremendous accolade that gave me great pause.

I hope to see many familiar faces and many new ones on Tuesday score some free coffee and fete this little coffeehouse at the corner of College and Miles. I humbly thank you all, in advance!

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