Mix a bit of Yiddish, Jewish wit, jokes, movies, and mensches, and you’ve got a great cup of coffee!
Allow us to introduce Art and Richard, founders of Hebrew Coffee. We collaborated with Hebrew Coffee on two gift boxes last year and thought our Candleschtick friends and family would enjoy learning more about their coffee and their ever-popular social media feeds. If you haven’t already, run to your phone and follow @hebrew.coffee. We’ll wait.
Back? Good…read on.
CS: Hello Art and Richard! We are excited to share your story on the Candleschtick blog. Tell us a little about how you started Hebrew Coffee.
Art: Richard and I have been friends for years. We met on a Habonim kibbutz in Israel after high school and have shared a common fondness for Jewish pride and humor, though maybe not for twelve-hour days working on a kibbutz.
Richard: So we decided to launch Hebrew Coffee in 2018.
Art: Hebrew Coffee is an opportunity for us to share our love of Jewish culture and humor with other Jews through our social media and coffee. As a brand, we thought that creating a product where our customers connect with their identity through the tradition of food would be something special.
CS: And how’s it going?
Richard: It’s been very cool so far, keynehora, people really seem to respond to the coffee and the content on social media. We even got a comment from PeeWee Herman on a post about his father! And the one from John Garfield’s daughter was pretty awesome.
Art: And what could be cooler than that?
CS: Hebrew Coffee has a fantastic social media presence. Tell us how that came about. How do you find the great stories, jokes, and Yiddish definitions?
Richard: Well, some of it was easy, like the jokes. We just stole them. Though we did change the wording, because every Jew believes that he tells the joke better than anyone else. Same goes with our Yiddish curses and sayings.
Art: Mensch posts do take more work. We’ll run across someone who has done wonderful or brave things and we’ll research and write up something short. Often, unfortunately, you run across these stories in obituaries, but that makes sense, as a lot of mensches fly under the radar.
Richard: Our Yiddish definitions were possibly the hardest at the beginning, as we struggled to find the right voice for them. Our first Yiddishisms were pretty bland, often having just the literal definition of the word and reference to coffee. But that’s just not what makes so much of Yiddish joyful. It took around two years until we were shepping naches from these posts.
CS: We love Kibbitz Blend! OK, we also love Chutzpah Blend. Tell us how you developed these flavor profiles.
Richard: It was kind of the tail wagging the dog.
CS: Meaning what?
Art: Well, we thought of the names of the blends first and then had to find the matching flavor.
Richard: It was important to have really excellent coffee, so that if someone just loved the brand and blend names they would try it and buy it again.
Art: So Kibbitz, to us, is all about sitting around with a cup of coffee and some cookies from a Jewish bakery and schmoozing. It had to be smooth and flavorful. And Chutzpah had to be really, really strong coffee, and it is.
CS: Lightning Round:
- Lokshen or potato? To say out loud? Lokshen. To eat, potato.
- Favorite Yiddish word? Shlemiel or any word that means fool or idiot. So many choices!
- Coffee and…? Conversation.
- Favorite holiday? Does St. Patrick’s Day count? If not, Tu B’shvat.
Visit Hebrew coffee: https://www.hebrew.coffee/