A coffee shop that only serves caffeine-free, “100% chemical-free” coffee opened in Manhattan over the weekend. The Swiss Water Decaffeinated Coffee Company, makers of the Swiss Water Process method of decaffeination, opened a pop-up studio that features a “sensory experience that includes espresso, hand crafted manually brewed coffee and cold brew options.”
Most decaf coffees use carbon dioxide as a solvent to remove caffeine from unroasted, green coffee beans. The Swiss Water Process uses water. Because its a longer, more costly process, is used almost exclusively on expensive organic coffee.
The method itself was developed in 1933 and you can already purchase Swiss Water decaf coffees at coffee shops and grocery stores in the United States, as well as online. So why open a shop now? Swiss Water could be attempting to raise its profile during the current third wave of coffee, during which artisanal shops (and Swiss Water users) such as Blue Bottle have found overwhelming success.
One thing is certain: A 2014 Zagat survey suggests that 90% of coffee lovers prefer a fully-caffeinated cup of joe, and New Yorkers seem to agree: