Located on Main Street in SLC, Three Pines Coffee is espresso, and the like, done with the utmost attention to detail. From the ratio of grounds to water to the background of the beans themselves, everything here is fastidiously selected, the result of which is a small but solid menu of stand-out drinks.
The brainchild of Meg Frampton and Nick Price, Three Pines came about when Meg’s mother presciently suggested that Salt Lake could use a couple more locally-owned coffee shops. Safe to say, the statement struck a cord with Meg and Nick, as a week later they had left their home in LA behind and were busy piecing together the necessary parts with which to start their own coffee-making cart.
Turns out, This city’s populace was indeed pining for high-quality joe.
In a bid to keep growing the business, Three Pines transitioned into a new brick and mortar spot just this past year. The current menu is fairly basic, consisting solely of brew-based staples, chai, and a newly-added matcha tea latte, however, this austerity aptly reflects the “less is more mindset” that Meg and Nick have adopted in order to ensure every cup they dole out is of the highest quality. In their own words, “If you're trying to do too many things, the quality will suffer. We have less than 500 square feet in our shop, so that really forces us to keep things simple, streamlined, and straightforward”.
We recently sat down with Meg and Nick to learn a bit more about how one of SLC’s favorite spots came to be…
First off, why coffee? What sparked that interest in you? We moved to LA a few years back and Nick just kind of fell into a job at Handsome Coffee as a handyman initially, but then began to learn the intricacies of good coffee. Handsome was unfortunately acquired by Blue Bottle Coffee. Nick was part of the transition from a bustling, local, specialty coffee roaster, into a mainstream, ordinary, corporate shop that immediately lost its luster and charm, that's when Nick really started forming ideas for how his own coffee shop would be.
Three Pines has grown pretty substantially since the original cart opened. Is there a specific part of that process that has been particularly exciting for you guys?
Building out our current space on Main Street has been the most fun and rewarding. Also the most difficult. It took about 3 months but we did almost everything ourselves. We built the coffee bar, hung the lights, tiled some walls, ran the water lines, and installed the equipment. It was a great learning experience and hugely rewarding.
Can you tell us a little more about the name? It was a combination of a scene from the Back To The Future movies and the original Twin Peaks TV show. Both are classic, and both have had a unique impact on our lives. The name also captured the vibe that we set out to create, which is outdoorsy, airy, vibrant, and a little quirky.
Any upcoming plans you can dish the skinny on? We are just trying to keep this shop functioning at maximum efficiency and having as much fun while doing it as possible. It's a small shop, but it's mighty. We hope people will venture away from their usual coffee routine, especially if it involves a lot of sugar, whipped cream, and artificial flavors, to come in and try some beautifully roasted coffee, brewed by people who love a pure and delicious cup. Come and taste how great coffee can be.
Three Pines Coffee | 165 S Main Street