Williamsburg’s first Yemeni coffee shop is now open on Bedford Avenue near the L train. Qahwah House (162 Bedford Ave.) opened with a ribbon cutting ceremony last Sunday, making it the second coffee shop for owner Ibrahim Alhasbani, who also runs a Qahwah House in Dearborn, MI.
Alhasbani moved to the U.S. in 2011 and identifies as an eighth generation coffee maker who always dreamed of owning his own NYC shop.
“It takes me first almost a year to prepare for everything…to ship the coffee from Yemen, to practice, to do also the ingredients for each drink,” he told News 12 Brooklyn.
While Alhasbani acknowledges the challenges of opening a new brick-and-mortar shop in NYC during a pandemic when many small businesses are struggling, he is adapting with a curbside seating area on Bedford Avenue and offers his signature roasts for sale online.
The storefront on the corner of N. 8 Street and Bedford Avenue was most-recently occupied by the clothing retailer Brooklyn Industries, and is neighbors with Oasis falafel shop, which recently relocated to 168 Bedford Ave.
The interior of the new Williamsburg location of Qahwah House features a large wooden world map and photographs telling the story of Yemeni coffee farmers. Coffee options include the Sana’ani (medium roast with cardamom) and qishr (coffeee husks with ginger and cardamom) along with Yemeni and chai teas. Pastries such as the khaliat alnahl, or buttery cheese-filled rolls drizzled with honey, are also available.
Qahwah House is open Monday – Saturday from 7 a.m. – 11 p.m. and Sunday 9 a.m. – 11 p.m.