4703 SE Hawthorne Blvd
7 am – 8 pm, daily
The open house at Tin Man Coffee was a festive way for the four partners to introduce themselves to SE residents. They treated everyone to mimosas and snacks as well serving up their own Tin Man roast and special blends for the coffee lovers. The gathering was comfortable and friendly, setting the tone for the partners’ intentions for their niche in the community.
The partnership includes Matt Peter, Adam Schley, his sister Amber Schley Iragui and her husband Charles Iragui. Matt and Adam grew up here in SE and spent their time skateboarding the streets of Portland and drinking whatever coffee was available. They both starting working in the coffee industry about fifteen years ago, while the trend for more variety in the drinks and blends brought coffee drinks to an art in this country.
In 2002 Matt went to work at Kaladi Brothers Coffee in Denver and Adam got a job working there too. They learned the language of coffee in earnest while working here by doing every job from being baristas to roasting the beans, cupping and tasting. It was while they were living and working in New York that the idea to roast their own beans and open a coffee shop began to percolate.
Amber and Charles moved to Portland from New York to be near family and raise their two elementary school aged children. Charles’ grandfather, Leon Iragui, was a French pastry chef who immigrated to the US with his family and established a successful French restaurant in Hollywood in the 1950s called Foyer de France. He has worked primarily in financial research for the last 20 years.
Amber was the Art Director at a small New York publishing house before coming back to Portland. She is now a freelance book designer and was called upon to stretch these capabilities into interior design for the Tin Man ambiance. The name/logo – Tin Man with a big red heart – is a charming wink to the famous character we have all read about or seen in the movie. Her challenge was to combine the elements of metal and fire.
The inspiration to create the interior came from the unusual charred wood finish of the exterior. She had seen this finish incorporated into a lot of industrial chic Japanese designs and thought the aesthetic was a natural for this space. The whimsical wallpaper made by the local company Juju Papers lends both a modern and a vintage feeling, while the Japanese prints, minimal plant arrangements, metallic tables and chairs and the red heart rug are thoughtful touches that makes the atmosphere edgy but comfortable. An abundant Wi-Fi plug with no password is another feature included.
What are most important are the products they serve. According to lead roaster Adam, there aren’t just one or two great coffees served but a myriad of them. He and Matt spent days of research blind cupping over 72 samples before deciding on the three roasters they use at Tin Man. In addition to those, they roast their own blend using a bean grown in Mexico but similar in flavor and aroma to the more familiar Kona blend. Adam speculates it could be the same latitude that makes the beans alike.
When ordering a cup of coffee the barista asks if you want room, this is their cue as to what type of coffee to pour for you. Adam said that some coffees are best drunk with cream and sweeteners and others are best black. Even with the many coffee drinks they serve, they select different grinds to use because it makes a difference. The goal of Tin Man is to serve their customers a cup of coffee they will look forward to having time and again.
They shop locally for other supplies supporting the Bake Shop on Sandy, Ranger Chocolate Company, Tanglewood Chai and Bowery Bagels. Soon they will serve wine and beer with simple charcuterie plates of meat, cheese, fruit, vegetables and bread.
Tin Man is open daily until 8 pm and is prepared to offer you their own special brand of coffee, pastries and hospitality.