Wednesday, April 23, 2014 · 7:28 a.m.
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Atlanta-based importer and roaster of international coffee Brash Coffee will be opening its first Chattanooga shop in Warehouse Row in February. 

Brash Coffee has been available only through select restaurants and boutique retailers or to those who sought out owner Matt Ludwikowski at his Peachtree Street office in Atlanta, according to a news release. 

But early next year, Ludwikowski will open in Warehouse Row's North Building, and the owner said he is excited about becoming a part of Chattanooga's coffee culture. 

"Coffee should be approachable, not pretentious, and the concept here is about sharing," Ludwikowski said in a prepared statement. "I’ve noticed coffee tends to bring folks from many walks of life together who all share a common passion—good coffee and good times with one another."

The new shop will create about 10 jobs. 

Ludwikowski is a barista whose craft-brewed coffee won the Southeast Regional Brewers Cup in 2012 and scored in the top six in the National Brewers Cup competition, also according to the release. 

He got the idea for Brash Coffee while visiting Laguneta, El Salvador, two years ago in search of the perfect coffee. He was aiming to understand how coffee is farmed and, while on that quest, found both an education and a business concept. 

Since then, he has been back to El Salvador more than a dozen times to negotiate fair terms for land and water, collaborate and work with farmers to grow and harvest coffee, and provide them with the tools to make a livable wage, according to the news release. 

The 1,089-square-foot space will be accessible through both a Market Street storefront and an interior entrance.

The shop won't have a traditional sale counter and instead will be built around a large, standing community table where all brewing and interaction will take place. 

At the 12-foot table, Ludwikowski and his team of baristas will hand-brew coffee, espresso beverages and coffee cherry tea (a tea brewed from the dried berries of coffee plants). The shop will also sell locally made sweet, savory and vegan pastries.

Ludwikowski will offer area residents a chance to taste his products this weekend through a pop-up shop at Warehouse Row from 7 a.m. until 2 p.m. Friday through Monday. 

"Brash Coffee has an accessible, approachable take on the traditional coffee shop," said George Krauth, vice president of Jamestown, which owns and manages Warehouse Row. "Their style is very fitting for Chattanooga and a welcome addition to Warehouse." 

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