LANSDALE — A coffee connoisseur doesn't have to go very far to get a cup, can or keg of java at Backyard Beans Coffee Company.

Co-owners Matt and Laura Adams have dominated the local coffee scene in Lansdale, bringing a variety of new blends to town since starting the business in their backyard in 2013.

"We live in the neighborhood that our coffee shop’s in,” Matt said. “So it helps build that sense of community and customer loyalty.”

Matt has had a long love affair with coffee. He initially discovered this working at The Cyber Café at Penn State’s Berks campus.

"I just started pursuing my knowledge of coffee through internet research and working at the on campus shop, and then I started home roasting coffees, similar to how people brew their own brew, home-brewed beer, there’s a small community of home roasters," Matt said.

Matt and Laura attended Penn State. He graduated in 2010, and she graduated in 2011. After leaving the university, they moved to Philadelphia and the couple’s passion for coffee continued to evolve.

“I would go out into our alley or off our front porch and roast coffee in a popcorn popper,” he said.

Once they relocated to Lansdale, the couple began selling their coffee and coffee beans at the local farmers market. They saw an opportunity to do something more. Matt noted several downtown coffee shops had closed.

“So essentially, we said, ‘if we don’t start a coffee shop as the roaster in Lansdale, somebody else will, and they may not use our coffee,’” Matt said.

The couple launched their business, complete with a roaster and grill, after receiving the necessary certifications from Lansdale Borough and the state.

At the couple’s downtown coffee shop, which opened in 2017 on 408 W. Main St. in Lansdale, patrons can purchase beverages from a full espresso bar as well as breakfast and lunch foods from the kitchen.

They’ll often see their friends and neighbors in their coffee shop.

“It’s been going extraordinarily well,” Matt said. “The community seems to enjoy it.”

Backyard Beans Coffee Company has coffee beans as well as kegs and cans of cold brew available for purchase at a variety of retailers on the East Coast from New England to Washington, D.C.

“We’ve been very fortunate with the timing of our growth into wholesale and have been able to grow into a regional presence with Whole Foods, both with our bagged coffee and our canned cold brew,” he said.

However, running a small business doesn’t come without its obstacles.

“We’ve had the challenges that every business owner experiences,” he said. “Everything from staffing to dealing with employees.”

Matt acknowledged the importance of “being adaptive and agile” in business.

“With opening a kitchen there was a lot of trial and error and … we made some changes pretty rapidly,” he said. “We made some mistakes early that we adjusted pretty quickly,” he said.

As small businesses owners and area residents, the Adams’ strived to look out for their 23 employees.

“We've always said our goal is to have a business where people can make a career out of it, which means we need to pay in a way that lets people be able to afford to live in this community,” Matt said.

They recently raised their prices in the downtown Lansdale store by “50 cents across the board.” Matt added there was a sign in the cafe last month informing customers of the upcoming change.

“We raised our prices because we are paying our employees more and providing benefits. That’s the reason,” Matt said. “We’re very transparent with our customers.” 

He mentioned that the company also makes an effort to work with coffee bean suppliers who support growers and cultivate sustainable relationships.

“We’re working with … importing partners that are making it a point to buy from the same producers year over year,” he said.

“We’re working towards this coming year being more transparent  ... so that our customers know where we’re getting our coffee from and what lengths we’re taking to give back to the growers,” Laura said. 

That aspect of transparency also applies to the Good Food Award that the company received last month. Backyard Beans Coffee Company won the 2020 Good Food Award for its Ethiopia Basa roast, which has “notes of blueberry, lavender, grape taffy and ruby chocolate,” according to a statement from the company.

The award features high quality and sustainable items, according to the Good Food Award website.

“We do have phenomenal quality because the competition is based on taste, but if you can’t provide the sustainable aspect of your coffee, then it’s disqualified from the competition,” Matt said. “So it’s twofold: We’re sourcing great coffee, but we’re also roasting great coffee, and it’s really validation that that’s happening.”

Matt attributed the success to Head Roaster Bobby Wrigley, who “has done a phenomenal job of continually improving our coffee roasts and how we’re roasting our coffee.”

Backyard Beans Coffee Company roasts and distributes its coffee out of a warehouse on West Fifth Street in Lansdale.

What’s next for the dynamic coffee duo? The couple is getting ready to open a second store in Ambler.

“That’s been a long time coming,” Laura said.

Matt added they’ve been selling their coffee at the farmers markets in Ambler since 2015 and have wanted to open another coffee shop in the borough for several years, but they couldn’t find their dream store.

“The right spot kind of found us, really,” he said. “The new owner of the building reached out to us because he had our coffee at the farmers market, and the space is perfect for our needs.”

The new coffee shop is expected to open within the next few months in downtown Ambler.

“It’ll be similar. It’ll have a full kitchen just like Lansdale,” Matt said. “I think there’s a couple of areas to expand. One would be in the retail sector, but we’re also growing in wholesale.”

As small business owners, Matt offered some guidance to aspiring entrepreneurs.

“The simple advice is that you have to get comfortable with the daily hustle of running a business,” he said.

Overall, he said it’s also about understanding the market and staying ahead of the curve without getting complacent.

“What’s preventing somebody from opening a shop right down the road from us in Lansdale? Nothing,” Matt said. “So it’s like continually understanding and driving to adapt to the change. That’s just what we try to do."

For more information, visit the company's website at

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