At 27 years old, Sumi Ali talks about coffee with the kind of calm specificity that could turn a non-believer into a missionary. I tell him I’m a coffee noob, someone who’s barely dabbled, is underwhelmed by the taste, and overwhelmed by the breadth of “choice.” Hip artisanal shops? Corner bodegas? Chain stores? All out to get me, all waiting impatiently while I meander through a menu the size of the Hall of Faces in Game of Thrones.
So when I tell this to Ali, the co-founder of direct-to-consumer coffee company Yes Plz, he perks up a bit over the phone. Maybe his company’s plan — to get a $15 bag of a hand-picked blend into the homes of anyone who wants it — is for someone like me?