W.C. Morse

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Visit Us
4270 Broadway,
Oakland, CA 94611
Open Hours
Every Day: 7am – 6pm

We stumbled upon Oakland’s historic W.C. Morse building in a paradoxically modern fashion. About a year ago, our production artist, Michelle Ott, was biking past the building with a friend. Awed by its architecture, she pulled over and snapped a photo on her phone. This photo begat a text, which begat several awed visits, which then begat a giddy lease signing. This all begat several hundred hours of permitting headaches, but we’ll soon look back on those and laugh. We’re sure of it.

The cafe is just 2.5 miles from our Oakland headquarters – a proximity that we’ve found has enabled quite a bit of dreaming and experimentation. In addition to our normal menu of drip coffee, iced coffee and espresso, our baristas craft a small clutch of drinks befitting the tinkering a workshop implies: a Shakerato, comprising espresso, ice and simple syrup; a Parisian-inspired Sowden Soft Brew Au Lait; and a Cascara Fizz, which includes cascara tea, sparkling water, simple syrup, and a wedge of lemon. Belgian-style street waffles are available, as are steel-cut oats, elegant cakes, and the usual goodies from our pastry kitchen.

In a nod to Morse’s blue-collar origins as the East Bay’s first-ever truck showroom, we’ve relocated our Tech department to the space and stocked it with an array of the best home machines on the market. Our techs are available to provide instruction, pointers and repairs to machines of all varieties.

All machines are purchased in-store, and available for pickup at W.C. Morse.
Got a question for a tech? Contact

Achille

$2,995 Quickmill Achille $2,995

A favorite of many of our left-brained employees and guests, the Achille allows for a delightful range of experimentation. Unlike automatic machines, whose water pressure ramps up and plateaus, the Achille's pressure fulcrum - a product of its manual lever - looks more like a bell curve. Such a dynamic extraction requires a bit of fussing, but it also results in unparalleled, buttery density in the cup. If you're a fan of our Roman Espresso at markets, this machine, which is essentially a mini-version of our market cart's Astoria, will produce a nearly identical experience. The only extra step is throwing on a poncho and lugging it out into the rain.
Gs3

$6,900 La Marzocco GS3 A/V $6,900

The GS/3 is the glittering standard to which all other home machines are compared. We use it in our training labs on both coasts, for special events, and at our Chelsea café's siphon bar. It includes an LCD display, a stainless steel body panel, a double boiler and an internal rotary pump. Before reaching your countertop (or your café, for that matter), it undergoes two sets of rigorous quality tests – first in Italy, where it’s manufactured; then in Seattle, where La Marzocco has its U.S. headquarters.
Rocket

$2,699 Rocket R58 $2,699

Compact and ultra-efficient, the Rocket R58 includes PID temperature control, a double boiler and a full commercial rotary pump. In a peculiar but lovely twist of engineering, it's classified as a "semi-automatic" machine: It occupies a unique zone between manual and automatic pressure functions. This means that its mini-"lever" allows for a bit of improvisation on the pre-infusion and extraction. Which, in turn, helps produce a balanced and delicious shot. An espresso machine to awaken the inner jazz musician.
Rancillio-silvia

$685 Rancilio Silvia $685

You've seen this machine before. Perhaps it was relegated to a dusty cabinet in your brother-in-law's kitchen? Or maybe tucked away, unplugged and espresso-stained, next to your college roommate's equally neglected sous-vide cooker? It's a ubiquitous machine, but don't let the modest price fool you; it's an impressive and reliable entrée to the world of espresso and milk. It includes a single boiler, a compact body and some impressive steam power. Will the Silvia make you work a bit for that perfect shot? Sure. But it's good, honest work.
Rocky

$380 Rancilio Rocky Grinder $380

This workhorse of a grinder features stainless steel burrs and 55 different grind settings. It provides an exceptional level of control at the finer end of things, which is crucial to a well-calibrated shot. Additional goodies include a thermal protection device, which stops the grinder when it's about to get too hot; a UV-protected hopper that helps ensure your beans' integrity; and a "stepped" adjustment system, which essentially locks a grind setting in place so it's perfectly consistent later on.
Mazzermini

$895 Mazzer Mini Grinder $895

The Mazzer Mini is essentially an identical (though slightly smaller) replica of the service grinders in all of our cafes. Which means that their impressive features are also the Mini's features: A "stepless" adjustment system yields an infinity of grind sizes, from French press to the finest espresso; a set of ultra-durable stainless steel burrs helps yield consistent extractions; and a powerful motor can mow through hundreds of pounds of coffee without so much as batting an eye. It may sound a bit macabre, but this grinder, if treated well, stands a good chance of outliving its owner.
Baratza

$140 Baratza Encore Grinder $140

The Encore is a superb first step for those hoping to extricate themselves from the vexing vicissitudes of the electronic blade. Thanks to its conical burrs, which remain sharp for several years and are capable of producing particle sizes anywhere from 250 to 1,200 microns, this grinder is excellent for all prep methods – from French press all the way down to espresso. Additional features include a “stepped” adjustment system, which helps ensure repeatable results; a “pulse” button, which lets you start and stop your grinder manually; and a DC motor, which keeps beans from heating up while they’re grinding.

Repairs

Is your home espresso machine leaking? Producing uneven shots? Emitting smoke and/or foreboding noises? Is your grinder on the fritz? Our team of technicians is here to help. You can schedule an appointment for repairs right here. We ask for a $20 diagnostic fee, which we'll waive if the machine needs substantial work. Our repairs rate is $65 per hour.