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Say Hello to our Coffee Connoisseurs

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PHOTOS BY Kelly Smith

 

The United By Blue Flagship Coffeehouse & Clothier turns one year old this Friday, September 19th, and we're thinking there's no better way to celebrate (other than this little party we're throwing) than by introducing you to some of the greatest people you will ever meet: the United By Blue baristas.
Jesse K, Cecilia, Hannah, Jesse M and Jen hold down the front lines here at UBB and rumor has it that a cup of brew from one of these fine humans could change your life.

We'll be posting a new spotlight every day this week, so be sure to check back for more...and drop in to say hello if you find yourself in Philly! 


No. 1: Jesse Kennedy


Jesse Kennedy
Jesse Kennedy
Jesse Kennedy
Jesse Kennedy

 

How long have you been a Philadelphian?

9 years running (and walking and biking)

Your go-to cafe drink

Americano

 

Favorite UBB piece

It's a tie between the Derby Tier backpack and the trail socks. Ok the Derby.... wait no, trail socks!

 

Last dream you can remember

A derby tier and a pair of trail socks walk into a bar.....

 

If you were a character on any television show (present or past), who would you be?

I'm not that into TV shows but off the top of my head, Tracy Morgan's character from 30 Rock because he is everything I appreciate about fiction.

 

Your greatest talent (outside making a killer cappuccino)

I play music and am really into the collaborative creative process when it comes to writing and recording. I have the most fun doing that out of anything but at the same time it's always been a sincere effort of mine, so I think that causes me to keep improving. 

 


No. 2: Cecilia Miller


Cecilia Miller
Cecilia Miller
Cecilia Miller
Cecilia Miller

 

How long have you been a Philadelphian?

I came to Philly for school four years ago, fell in love with the city and never left!

Your go-to cafe drink

Pour over coffee, I know I’ve made a great cup of coffee when I don’t have to add any cream or sugar and I never have to add anything to a pour over. 

Favorite UBB piece

I really love any of our bags in nutmeg, I guess if I had to pick my absolute favorite, it would be the Sutter’s Mill Tool Bag….Although I will say I’m excited about our fall bags coming in shortly.
 

If you could sit down for coffee with any person in history, who would it be and why?

This is always a hard question for me but I think I’d like to have coffee with John Hughes. His movies pretty much defined my childhood. The Breakfast Club was the first R rated movie my mom let me watch and of course there’s Home Alone and Home Alone: Lost in New York, which are two of my favorite Christmas movies. And then there’s the not so obvious Hughes films that every 90s kid knows and loves like Flubber, Curly Sue, and Dennis the Menace. I guess I’d just like to hang out with the guy that is responsible for some of my favorite movies, maybe make him a nice cup of coffee as a small token of gratitude for giving me Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Pretty in Pink.

 

Weirdest thing you've ever eaten

I don’t think I’ve eaten anything particularly weird…I’ve been a vegetarian since I was nine and I think the weirdest thing about me are the foods I’ve never eaten; beef jerky, ribs, wings, pretty much every deli meat, and yes, I have never had cheesesteak…so I guess some might say I’m not a true Philadelphian.
 

Which Philly neighborhood do you live in and what’s the best part about it?

I just moved to Fishtown this summer and when we were looking at houses proximity to Pizza Brain/Lil Baby’s was a major factor into our decision. We only live two blocks away from them and so many of our other favorite restaurants and bars.

 


No. 3: Hannah Jordan


Hannah Jordan
Hannah Jordan
Hannah Jordan
Hannah Jordan

 

How long have you been a Philadelphian?

I've been living in Philly for 3 years now. I moved here the summer of 2011 after a pathetic attempt at becoming a Southern Californian.

Your go-to cafe drink

Usually just a black coffee or maybe a Chai Latte if I'm feelin' fancy.
 

Favorite UBB piece

This past week we brought in our new line of bags, and I've been really into the Hiker. I'm considering buying one myself, eventually. It has my favorite design, but all of our new bags are amazing. The designers put a lot of thought into the details.
Having said that, when it comes to what I buy the most, I take home one of our Rogue soaps and UBB Candles on a regular basis.
 

Favorite band, book and movie:

I honestly, can't say what my favorite band is, but a few of the bands listen to a lot are Cloud Nothings, Porches, Land of Talk, Creepoid, Black Moth Super Rainbow, Built to Spill, and all of David Bazan's projects. David Bazan is probably the closest thing I have to a favorite. I've been following him since I was in Middle School.
Dark comedy, Apocalyptic fiction, and Sci-Fi. That's mainly all I read. Recently, I've been reading the MaddAddam Trilogy by Margaret Atwood and it's amazing. It's a dystopian/post apocalyptic series that's realistic in the sense that there's nothing in the books that doesn't or couldn't exist which makes the story seem like it could actually happen sometime in the future. I recommend it to everybody, but be warned, it finds itself in some really dark places.
My favorite movie is definitely Chef. I saw this about a month ago at the Ritz on one of the best days I've had in a long time. Watching it really solidified how incredible the day was. It's a movie that just makes you happy to be alive. It's fun, about family/food, and inspires you to get invested in a craft.

 

What does a typical weekend in the life of Hannah look like?

My days off I try to spend accomplishing all of my adult things, like doctors appointments, budgeting, laundry etc. I usually get half way and then end up doing whatever the most fun activity is at the time. House shows, bonfires, open mics, bike rides, coffee with good friends, creative projects, and video games all tend to be the most common. I have a lot of close family members that still live in California, so I like to take an hour or two and catch up with them over the phone. 

 


No. 4: Jesse Moore


Jesse Moore<
Jesse Moore<
Jesse Moore<
Jesse Moore<

 

How long have you been a Philadelphian?

I've been living in Philadelphia for 8 years but I grew up surrounded by the ocean on Aquidneck Island, Rhode Island. 

Your go-to cafe drink

While my go-to cafe drink is definitely the Cortado (think of it as a tiny cappuccino) lately I also find myself opting for our chai latte. We carry an all-natural chai concentrate from The Random Tea Room (a local tea shop) and it is out of this world good! 
 

Favorite UBB piece

It's a tie between the Trafford Weekender and the Hudderton backpack because I rarely travel without both. Most of the traveling I do during the year is along the east coast and throughout New England. These two bags allow me to bring everything I might need while still managing to travel light.
 

Choose a superpower:

As a musician I'd like to have the ability to play any instrument and to immediately read any piece of sheet music. I don't know though... if this weren't a hypothetical question I'd probably choose something with a broader scope, a power that would help others. Maybe I'd be able produce pure spring water from my finger tips. That'd be pretty great, right?

 

Theme song! Pick one:

Theme song is too hard. There is, however, an album that has been on heavy rotation this summer and that is Angel Olsen's 'Burn Your Fire for No Witness'. I first saw Olsen perform at the Hopscotch Music Festival in Raleigh, NC last year and have been a big fan ever since.

You're known for your strong hat game. How many hats do you own, what makes a good hat, and any more you've got your eye on?

I never thought of myself as being somebody with a strong hat game but rather a strong bed-head game. Hats have always been an easy way for me to cover up my sometimes unruly hair. I suppose, as a result, my hat collection has grown considerably. I probably own a dozen hats... but I really only wear 3 or 4 of them. In terms of what makes a good hat I think the most important thing is that you're comfortable in your hat. I wore the United By Blue 5 panel cap in green all summer. Now that it's getting cooler I'm starting to wear a green wool Pendleton fedora more often. A friend of mine gave it to me as a gift when they moved out of Philadelphia. Since then it's acquired a goose feather from my sister's farm in NH so that hat has sentimental value to me now. I've got my eye on the Brixton Wesley Fedora.... although I'm really not sure I need any more in my collection. For now.

 


No. 5: Jen Singley


Jen Singley
Jen Singley
Jen Singley
Jen Singley

 

How long have you been a Philadelphian?

5 years. I went to Temple University in North Philly and decided this city was where I wanted to stay for a while.

Your go-to cafe drink

Hot black coffee in the morning and a London Fog in the afternoon.

Favorite UBB piece

Our new soy candles! Not only are they made of all natural ingredients that smell delicious, but they are also beautifully branded and packaged.

Best advice you've ever been given

My gram once told me "be good to others and they will be good to you." This has gone pretty well for me so far!
 

Something most people don't know about coffee:

The lighter the roast, the more caffeine! Darker roasts will burn the caffeine (and flavor) right out of the coffee bean.

 

Best concert (or performance) you've seen this year:

Avett Brothers at Musikfest in Bethlehem, PA. It was a spur of the moment trip on a Thursday night to drive an hour from Philadelphia just to see the concert. Oh, and it was free thanks to my roommate's parents who were volunteering at the festival grounds that night!


Come meet our baristas (and a ton of other cool people) at our 1 Year Anniversary Party this Friday!

RSVP HERE

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