Sonoma County has some of the best small batch roastery and coffee houses in the state. Here is a short list of the elite.
I don’t consider myself a coffee expert, but I did co-own and operate a local coffee shop for 3 years. I feel that my tastes would be similar to an average coffee drinker (I prefer to add milk and sugar to my coffee).
Acre Coffee has five locations in Sonoma County. Their roastery is located in Petaluma. I’ve worked with one of their former managers who gave me a tour of their facility. Their operations are very clean and they roast some of the finest quality green beans.
Perhaps the best (and most pretentious) cup of coffee in Sonoma County. They make a great drink whether you want a latte, cappuccino, or hot chocolate. The staff are well trained but there may be a flair of arrogance. They serve a great cup of coffee and they know it (and they want you to know it too).
The perfect little shop! Located in Cloverdale, I usually gauge coffee shops on their cappuccino. Plank serves a mean cappuccino with the perfect ratio of espresso, milk, and foam. These ratios allow you to taste the espresso, evaluate the quality of the milk and how it was steamed. The shop is cute, the coffee is excellent, and the pastries are tasty. Plank is probably my favorite coffee shop in the area.
Formerly Taylor Maid Farms, Taylor Lane is located in the town of Sebastopol and has been roasting coffee in Sonoma County for 25 years. With new CEO Darleen Scherer taking over, expansion efforts are underway—Taylor Lane may not be a small batch roastery much longer.
Others worth mentioning
Located not too far away from Sonoma’s downtown square, Barking Dog has all the coffee options you’d expect. I enjoyed the large, clean space and seeing the roaster up close. They even have a blend dedicated to the Sonoma Stompers, the local minor league baseball team.
Disclaimer: I was a former co-owner of Blue Beagle Coffee.
My wife and I sold it after our daughter was born. The shop has a small Sonofresco air roaster that is used to roast two pound batches of green beans. The current coffee menu includes offerings from Cameroon, Laso, and Paupa New Guinea. The roast profiles were carefully curated from 10+ year industry veteran Tommy Smith. Tommy has worked in various cafes as a barista, trainer, and manager. He has since left Blue Beagle, but his roast profiles and methods are still in place.