On the corner of 9th Street and W. Markham Avenue in Durham, sits a hidden gem: George's Java. This quaint, peaceful coffee shop was opened this past February by owner Terry Metts, who handles all the sourcing and roasting of coffee beans for the shop. After speaking with Terry, one thing immediately stood out – he lives and breathes coffee.
Terry previously owned another coffee shop in Charlotte, but sold it in order to master the art of coffee roasting. After years of honing his skills and fine tuning how to extract the most natural flavor from each type of bean, Terry opened George's Java as a tribute to his ancestor George Metts, one of the original settlers of New Bern, NC.
In doing so, all aspects of the shop (not just the coffee) are as organic and natural as possible, even down to the smallest details. The wood planks that line the walls and make up the bar are all reclaimed wood from old barns, and the building's original floorboards were reused as a part of the ceiling.
As charming as the shop may be, the star is – and always will be – the coffee. Terry roasts his beans every morning to ensure peak freshness. He blends combinations of organic, hand-picked beans from Guatemala, Peru and Brazil, among others, for his unique in house roasts.
For those that like to live on the sweeter side with their morning Joe, George's Java offers a selection of naturally flavored coffees including Blueberry Cream, Chocolate Almond and Tiramisu. When we opened the bags of coffee just to smell the beans, the sweet aromas emanating from the beans alone was enough to get me craving a cup of coffee.
And on that note, owner Terry served us some espresso to satiate our visibly growing coffee craving. The incredible rich and buttery quality of the espresso was almost breath-taking. We sampled a few drinks, all with a smoothness and natural flavor that only impeccable roasting and the best coffee beans can achieve.I even took home a bag of dark roast for my french press to treat myself every morning. George's Java serves the full range of brewed coffee and espresso drinks, and also a handful of owner Terry's creations, including Coffee Cremes, a spin on a Frappucino featuring their cold brew coffee.
The combination of a relaxed, easy environment and outstanding coffee makes George's Java the ideal place to go when you just need to leave the real world for a while. When asked why the shop is closed on Sundays, owner Terry quickly responded, "It's because my employees – no, everyone – needs a day off." And that pretty much sums up what George's Java is all about.
The next time you're looking to unwind with an exceptional cup of coffee (which, if you're like me is every hour of every day), head on down to George's Java.