Before March of 2017, the only thing Jacob Hurrell-Zitelman knew about coffee was that it woke him up before swim practice. Now he runs Quick Sip Cold Brew, an artisan coffee company with goals of becoming “the Starbucks of today.”
The sophomore business analytics and technology and business marketing major stumbled into the coffee industry by accident, while pursuing his goal of owning a business on North St. Mary’s Street that operates as a coffee shop by day and a bar by night.
Hurrell-Zitelman has since learned a lot about the up-and-coming cold brew. Cold brew can be designed in many different ways, whether it be through the place, temperature, farmer, elevation, roast process, or the beans chosen for the brew.
In researching for the potential bar, however, the coffee half of the business began to fascinate Hurrell-Zitelman.
“I met a lot of people in coffee. Learning that coffee was an art, as opposed to something that we consume for caffeine every day, really intrigued me,” Hurrell-Zitelman said.
Before long, Hurrell-Zitelman was pouring himself into coffee research. He learned that the way people get their coffee has changed drastically in recent years.
Hurrell-Zitelman decided he had to learn to make the best coffee in the best way. As a purist, he wanted to find coffee that appealed to traditional drinkers as well as those who prefer pumpkin spice
“Basically, there are three ways to get coffee. There’s quick service, which comes in a big can, and in the fifties everyone loved that. Then, it became about the experience, which is when Starbucks took over. Now, we’re moving into caring about actual bean quality and artisanal value in coffee,” Hurrell-Zitelman said.
“You can’t take specialty coffee home unless you’re buying all sorts of equipment, and spending a lot of time grinding and brewing this coffee,” Hurrell-Zitelman said.
Quick Sip was born to solve this problem. The company started humbly in a Trinity entrepreneurship classroom, and expanded into a serious, successful business.
Hurrell-Zitelman began to work with a business partner he met in his bar research days. The pair have been brewing since.
“We spent months, me and my partner, trying the same coffee over and over again,” Hurrell-Zitelman said.
Finally, they found the right time, roaster and all those little details that come together in order to make a delicious, unique cup of coffee.
Quick Sip beans come from a single woman who farms in a high-elevation zone of Ethiopia, and are roasted by an award-winning, local roaster.
The coffee features bright, floral tones. Hurrell-Zitelman designed two flavors, original and Texican, for two distinct tastes; the former is geared toward “coffee purists,” while the latter is for those who prefer sweeter, Starbucks-like drinks.
There are also reasons for choosing cold brew as opposed to hot coffee. Hurrell-Zitelman claims that cold brew is less acidic in the way it affects the digestive system.
“With cold brew, since it steeps over time instead of over heat, a lot of the acid is dissipated,” Hurrell-Zitelman said.
This process is less harmful to the environment because no heat is required. In brewing the coffee, no electricity is used and no coal is burned.
Only a few Trinity students have purchased Hurrell-Zitelman’s product so far, but of those interviewed.
“I think Quick Sip is fantastic! I’ve had it a few times since Jacob started producing it last year and have always been very impressed with the quality and the pretty unique packaging for a coffee,” said senior Charles Clark.
Junior Ivy Claflin likes that the Texican coffee has a great flavor, is not very acidic and can be enjoyed with or without cream.
“Quick Sip is absolutely the best cold brew I have ever had. I just bought a tub of it for $15 because I am obsessed,” Claflin said.
Quick Sip is now sold in several quick service restaurants, including The Growler Exchange, Fratello’s Italian Market & Deli and both locations of Jugo Juicery. The cold brew coffee has also been featured on the local TV show, “SA Live.”
When asked what advice he would offer to aspiring entrepreneurs, Hurrell-Zitelman stressed the importance of tenacity.
“This game is very long and very lonely. But don’t give up, and don’t let other people tell you you can’t do this,” Hurrell-Zitelman said.
In the future, Hurrell-Zitelman hopes to get his product on the shelves of the both campus PODs.
Until then, like Quick Sip on Facebook. He is happy to deliver coffee directly to individual students’ dorms when they order it on his website at quicksipcoffee.com.