Atwater’s & Counter Culture: A sustainable coffee love story

At Atwater’s, our coffee is served in locally handmade mugs.

At Atwater’s, our coffee is served in locally handmade mugs.

Atwater’s partnership with Counter Culture Coffee goes way back. Our delicious cups of coffee have come from the Durham, North Carolina-based company for over a decade. What makes us work so well together? Our shared love for sustainable practices and healthy, local food. Oh, and our love of a great cup of rich, delicious and sustainably farmed coffee.

Counter Culture Coffee was founded in 1995, by Brett Smith and Fred Houk. The quality coffee company has grown and expanded while still keeping sustainability at the center of their creations. In 2002, their Durham facility was the first in North Carolina to become a certified-organic roaster. At Counter Culture, they work with the farmers, the roasteries and their employees to ensure working conditions are safe and environmentally friendly. They also make sure all of the workers along the way are compensated fairly. The staff at Counter Culture stays in touch with the people and places where the coffee originates. With their promise of commitment to communities abroad, in 2010, Counter Culture created the Sustaining Environmental and Educational Development at Source (SEEDS) to provide non-coffee-specific grants to benefit the coffee-producing communities. Just one example of the SEEDS grants at work was the Counter Culture trip to Burundi. In Burundi, the coffee team was able to meet the president of the Kazoza N’Ikawa co-op, Germaine Simbayobewe. Counter Culture provided SEEDS grants in order to encourage sustainable farming abroad. According to their site, Kazoza was able to “set up two nurseries for shade trees, train farmers on pit composting, and provide 54 goats to farmers for manure production.” 

We are committed to and proud of our coffee partnership with Counter Culture.

We are committed to and proud of our coffee partnership with Counter Culture.

A big part of sustainable farming is transparency, something that both Counter Culture Coffee and Atwater’s pride themselves on. Easy to find and readily available sustainability reports are Counter Culture’s specialty. You can also trace their coffee from the beans to our mugs, including the effects on local communities and communities abroad. Counter Culture opened training centers in the United States to train baristas and to practice the art of brewing delicious coffee that you can taste at every Atwater’s location. These training centers focus on sustainable agriculture, hunger prevention and alleviation to contribute to local communities in a significant way.

Atwater’s House Coffee is the Counter Culture Hologram blend.

Atwater’s House Coffee is the Counter Culture Hologram blend.

As a part of Atwater’s mission to serve our customers, we aim to gather the freshest and most responsible ingredients when creating delicious meals. With Counter Culture, we handcraft each and every latte and espresso drink to perfection. And you can count on consistency, because we exclusively carry Counter Culture products. Whether you like a double espresso or something more decadent, like our mocha or lavender vanilla latte, Atwaters has the perfect freshly brewed coffee for you. Find out what delicious coffee blends your local Atwater’s is brewing here

The Atwater’s delicious House Coffee roast, “Hologram,” is an upscale Mocha Java, with a special taste that combines fruity and chocolate flavors into something that is sure to become your new favorite. It is a blend of coffee that hails from Sipacapa, Guatemala, Worka, Ethiopia and Kabeywa, Uganda. Lucky for you, it’s available year-round. Counter Culture’s coffee is never flavored and they have a tasting guide so you can show off your newfound coffee expertise. 

counter culture coffee beans

Not sure where to start? Try the Hologram iced in the morning with our delicious handmade breads and jams that you can easily order from our online store. The Red Berry Rose or Blueberry Lemon Zest slathered on a slice of our 7 Grain & Flax, along with a cup of Hologram, is sure to please your taste buds before you start your day. Don’t forget about our seasonal jams! In the winter, you can try our Winter Reserve or Orange and Earl Gray. Or pick up a Fruit and Nut or Cherry Chocolate granola bar if you’re in a rush, and pour your coffee into an Atwater’s reusable tumbler.

The Hologram chocolate undertones pair perfectly with some of our special pastries. Try our decadent Dark Chocolate Walnut cookies or a rich and fudgy Vegan Brownie with your coffee, for a warm after dinner treat. Go ahead, double dip with our Chocolate Dipped Macaroons or elevate your dessert with the buttery Almond Shortbread cookie. If you’re gluten-free, don’t fret. Our Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip cookies pair nicely with a warm mug of coffee and a good book.

Getting hungry? We’ve got you covered. Atwater’s online store is easy to use. Simply click on your favorite treat, then click checkout. Your order will be on it’s way from our Big Kitchen in Baltimore right to your front door! 

As for the Hologram, we sell coffee beans in house, so feel free to ask one of our employees to grind them for you! Or if you’re already a coffee pro, you can grind them at home! If you’re not a pro yet, Counter Culture has you covered with their Coffee Basics. If you’re not into hot coffee, no problem! Counter Culture’s iced coffee recipe guides you on how to make that perfect tumbler for work or school, without ending up with the dreaded watered down coffee.

Did you know that some coffee blends go out of season? Learn about when coffee is in season all over the world, with their seasonality map or “refine your grind” with a quick video. Make a mug, a glass or a tumbler (with a reusable straw!) at home, or allow us to make it for you!

Atwater's cookies

So stop by to grab a cozy cup of coffee and pick up one of our menus to peruse our delicious Baltimore local food. Our partnership with Counter Culture allows us to help the environment and communities far beyond Baltimore. And our promise to you is that when you pick up a warm mug of Atwater’s House Blend, you can be confident you’re drinking something that was made with a commitment to sustainability, the environment and to you. 

 
 
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About us

Since 1999 Atwater’s has been making traditional food crafted by hand. We began in a small bakery making only one kind of bread and grew to our current Baltimore shops that specialize in soup, sandwiches, salad, cheese, coffee, scottish pies, jam, and more! As we continue to grow, our commitment to quality food and service remains the same. You can find our fine foods at our locations and markets across the Baltimore-Washington area.

 
newJake Millhausen