By Richard L. Gaw
For those in southern Chester County who've craved a Sumatra Sima Lungun, or perhaps fancied a Guatemala San Jose Oceana coffee, their wish has finally been granted. The long-awaited opening of Philter in Kennett Square has arrived.
After a sneak preview on Dec. 6, the cafe officially opened on Dec. 9, and in the short span of a week, the customers who've flocked to Kennett Square's first dedicated coffee shop have voiced their approval. The cafe specializes in distinct, hand-poured coffees from Latin America, East Africa and Indonesia, as well as espresso drinks and batch- and individually made coffee. Bagels, pastries, and breakfast sandwiches are served in the morning and soup, salads, and sandwiches in the afternoon, and all are made on site.
The store’s new facade was designed by Dennis Melton of Melton Architects in Kennett Square, and its interior features locally handcrafted tables made of reclaimed wood and farm machinery, as well as restored workbenches and cabinetry, bathrooms with changing tables, and dedicated wall outlets for customers looking to do computer work while they enjoy their visit.
“Our customers really appreciate the overall aesthetics of the space, and we've been getting great reviews on our batch brews and selling a lot of individual brews as well,” said owner Chris Thompson. For an eclectic touch, the framed work of area photographers Jim Graham, Alessandra Manzotti and Karen Gowen graces the gray walls of the cafe, with many of the photographs celebrating the scenery of Chester County.
“I've always been a big fan of photography and wanted feature it because I feel it doesn't get the credit it deserves as a fine art,” Thompson said. “I wanted to show people what great photography looks like.”
Thompson said that he was looking forward to Philter's first weekend in Kennett Square, which puts the cafe right in the middle of holiday shopping on State Street.