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Friday, September 29, 2023
Sept. 29, 2023

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Working in Clark County: Corey Schmidt, 9 Bar Espresso

By , Columbian news assistant

Whether it’s running his own small business or brewing his daily cup of joe, Corey Schmidt is no stranger to the daily grind.

Corey Schmidt is the owner and founder of 9 Bar Espresso at 5305 N.E. 121st Ave. in Vancouver.

9 Bar Espresso stands out as a unique family-owned coffee roasting business, partnering with farms to create ethically sourced coffees bursting with flavor.

Schmidt’s signature products include an organic elemental espresso, which features notes of toasted nuts and caramel, and a rich yet slightly sweet union blend.

Like other food and drink purveyors, Schmidt said he is experiencing increased wholesale costs for his products.

“High costs are something that a lot of small businesses are struggling with right now,” Schmidt explained. “Coffee prices are not something we try to negotiate down because we believe in supporting small family farms by paying fair prices. Quality sourced ingredients are part of our brand, and we’ll do everything we can to keep it that way while being fair to everyone.”

Schmidt works daily to keep all aspects of the business running. Tasks include maintaining inventory, roasting and filling orders, delivery, vending at local farmers markets and training new baristas.

While primarily a solo operation, Schmidt also partners with his wife Nicole’s small business of Sprout Partners to create marketing and graphics for 9 Bar Espresso.

Coffee roasting was not originally in Schmidt’s plans when he graduated from culinary school. His first introduction to the world of coffee started as a part-time job working as a barista at a local coffee house to help pay off his student loans.

What started out as just a job quickly turned into a passion, thanks to a mentor at that coffee shop who helped Schmidt learn the trade and develop a greater knowledge of the coffee industry.

After five years of serving coffee, Schmidt was ready to take the plunge and start creating his own unique roasts and blends. Now, with nearly 18 years of coffee roasting research and experience under his belt, Schmidt is excited to be able to share his work with all the fellow coffee lovers in Clark County.

“I love talking to people about coffee,” Schmidt said, “whether it’s asking questions so I can recommend a blend, discussing their favorite brewing method, or sharing my knowledge and experiences with someone who loves coffee as much as I do.”

Schmidt hopes to continue to share his product and passion with even more people, with goals to expand 9 Bar Espresso’s sales to additional Clark County locations. Currently beans are available at the roastery from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturdays, by appointment, or online.

“I would like to sincerely thank all those who have bought coffee from us no matter the amount,” Schmidt said. “I am especially humbled by those special customers who stumbled upon us when we were brand new and continue to order from us years later. There are so many places to purchase coffee from and I so appreciate every single person who chooses 9 Bar Espresso.”

For those interested in brewing 9 Bar Espresso for themselves, orders can be made on their website at www.9barespresso.com.