Illy opens newest San Francisco coffee bar and retail shop

Illy opened its newest illy caffè coffee bar San Francisco in late January. The new coffee bar, located within the historic Mills Building at 220 Montgomery Street is illy’s flagship store, and largest to date in San Francisco. There are now seven illy caffè locations throughout the city.

The Mills Building, which dates back to 1841, is a city landmark with singular historical, architectural and aesthetic interest. The building was commissioned by Darius Ogden Mills, one of San Francisco’s early tycoons, who helped to finance the construction of the Southern Pacific Railroad.

Illy caffè stores are designed to offer coffee lovers an inspirational and immersive “illy” experience, featuring the brand’s iconic imagery, illy’s art collection cups and other visual elements. The Montgomery St. location is furnished with the company’s signature red and white colour palette and accented with modern design elements, such as chandeliers crafted from illy art collection cups that showcase the work of Jeff Koons, James Rosenquist and other well-known contemporary artists. The flagship store has communal seating areas for large groups and private ones for intimate conversations.

Illy caffè coffee bars’ baristas are trained by the Trieste, Italy-based company’s University of Coffee faculty, led in the US by Master Barista Giorgio Milos. The training spans coffee preparation from traditional espresso, latte and cappuccino, to brewed coffee and original specialty drinks crafted with botanicals such as the illy Lavender Mint Latte. Illy’s single origin coffees, which are purchased directly from farmers, are available for espresso and pour over methods, and in a variety of cold preparations including air-infused cold brew.

Coffee offerings are enhanced by a wide menu of chef-made sweet and savoury selections that are locally sourced and prepared daily on the premises, to go and for catering to local businesses. Food items include: freshly-made soups and salads; paninos, sandwiches and wraps; freshly baked bread and pastries; and desserts such as classic Italian bomboloni and the illymisu, tiramisu made with a shot of illy espresso.

The new coffee bar also has a retail shop within, which offers an array of products, such as illy espresso and drip coffee machines, limited edition illy art collection cups and illy’s 100 percent Arabica blend and single-origin line, both of which are suited to a range of preparation styles. There is also an assortment of products from companies with Gruppo Illy, the Illy family’s holding company, including Domori Criollo chocolates and Dammann Frères Teas.

In addition to the San Francisco locations, illy caffè coffee bars can be found in select cities in North America such as Chicago, Washington DC, Detroit, Denver, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, and Toronto.

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