OR Espresso Bar, Ghent

Categories Café Hop

This was one café that seemed to be more people than coffee, which is a lovely thing, really. Located across the street from the celebrated Minard Theatre, OR Espresso Bar appears to be the meeting point for all coffee lovers in Ghent. Be it a slowly hand-crafted filter brew or a lusty ristretto, everyone is deep in coffee and conversation.

The people factor seems to be a happy by-product as the original intention was more geeky – to create a “live” coffee lab where founders Tom Janssen and Katrien Pauwels could learn from the coffee they served and further refine their roasts.

When the duo first met, they were both working in IT. Neither had any experience in coffee other than Janssen’s grandfather having been a roaster. So what spurred these two entrepreneurs on were only a passion for the bean and a desire to introduce specialty coffee to Belgium.

After a sabbatical year traveling around Asia, Janssen and Pauwels finally decided to start their own coffee roastery in 2001. Operating from a small shop in Aalst, a town near Brussels, they built a client base of wholesale customers, restaurants and cafés.

The next step, naturally, was to open their own coffee bar – OR Espresso Bar in Ghent – their very first one. The café was such a success that Janssen and Pauwels soon opened a second location in bustling Brussels. Today OR Coffee has a micro roastery, a coffee training center, and three espresso bars in Ghent and Brussels.

The ambience in the original shop in Ghent is bustling but comfortable too. A cosy place to curl up with a cuppa and people watch at the long bar running alongside the window. If this is how the Belgians enjoy their coffee, you can’t blame us for joining in happily.

OR是我們到根特遊玩時所拜訪的第二家咖啡館。
兩位老闆Tom Janssen 和Katrien Pauwels原本從事的是有關IT的行業,
唯一和咖啡有點淵源的是Janssen的祖父,他是一位烘豆師。
但兩人在經過一年到亞洲各地旅行后,本著對豆子和精品咖啡的喜愛,
決定于2001年在阿爾斯特,布魯塞爾附近的一個鎮上開設了一家烘豆坊。
并由這裡,兩人慢慢的建立起廣大的人脈和顧客群,
接著更於根特開設了第一家OR咖啡館。
到了今天,OR除了有自己的烘豆坊和培訓中心外,
還在根特和布魯塞爾開設了三家咖啡館。

對於OR,兩位老闆秉著的是開設一家有生命的咖啡館來經營,
想藉著和顧客的交流以及從人客們的迴響中,慢慢進一步完善其咖啡烘焙的過程。
也許因為這樣,OR是一家人味很濃的咖啡館。
一踏入館內就我們看到了這樣一幅景象;
站著買咖啡的,坐在館內的看報章的,倚在窗邊高談闊論的;
老的、少的、男的、女的;形形色色各種各樣的人都有,
當然還有我們兩個遊客。
我喜歡這樣一家咖啡館,雖然擁擠了些,但卻非常的自在,
一般在咖啡館里我都會避免拍攝其他顧客,
不過在OR,除了咖啡外,這裡的客人們更是一道獨特的景色,
讓我忍不住偷偷的拿起相機,將這美麗的一景捕捉、定格。


OR Espresso Bar
Walpoortstraat 26, 9000 Ghent, Belgium
Mon-Fri 7:30am-6pm / Sat 9am-6pm / Sun 10am-6pm
+32-9-223-6500
orcoffee.be

Kenny is a writer. CK is a photographer. Together they café-hop around the world and have contributed to The Malay Mail Online, Time Out, and other cool publications. Read more of Kenny’s stories at Life for Beginners and check out CK’s photography at Devil's Tales 胡思亂想.

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