It was an open secret at first. A few friends gathered in Casey Goch’s backyard in Venice for weekend, pay-what-you-will coffee parties. Musicians came, and artists; friends of friends and then those friends’ friends. Word got out, and soon the line was stretching down the block. The locally roasted pour-over was a draw, of course, but crowds also came for the community. Goch called the project “Shreebs” — a term of endearment she had invented as a child. Relationships formed, collaborations sparked.
A desire for connection is the wind in Goch’s sails, and it has carried her and friend (now business partner) Ren Fuller-Wasserman through all manner of coffee-centric endeavors — a baby shower gig here, a pop-up in a Hollywood laundromat there, a seven-month stint in H.D. Buttercup. Since August, they’ve operated full time out of a spruced-up shipping container in the Arts District. They’ll be there, well, for a while at least — until the next interesting opportunity presents itself.
Goch and Fuller-Wasserman are a cheery, easygoing duo, and more often than not, one or both of them is manning the Shreebs counter, chatting up their “coffee friends.”
“We’re two women in coffee,” Goch says, “which is something we wanted to represent, but not in a #girlboss kind of way. We definitely wanted to create a brand that felt somewhat feminine in a coffee space that’s often very masculine and industrial and intense.”
Foregoing the oft-intimidating machismo of the ‘third wave’ world, they bring the spunk back to coffee. Situated on a triangle of artificial turf, their digs are done up in a pattern of orange, teal, salmon, and bougainvillea pink, an aesthetic lifted from the work of Mexican architect Luis Barragán and executed by muralist Priscilla Witte. Their beverage menu is also south-of-theborder- inspired, starting with the organic coffee they source from Miravalles. At the heart of the menu is a trio of frothy-topped cold brew lattes: horchata, choco chili, and salted dulce, each flavor crafted by chef Daniel Benhaim.
“He created these flavors that complement the coffee, rather than take over,” Goch says. That their coffee is up to snob-worthy standards (it certainly is) is of secondary importance to Goch and Fuller-Wasserman. It’s accessibility they care about. All are accepted here — even, perhaps especially, those who take their coffee a mite froofy. Kids are welcome, dogs too. Your grandma would totally dig it.
What started as a backyard business has morphed over the years, but as much as Shreebs has changed, it has remained centered around camaraderie. If you’re in the neighborhood, swing by for an iced latte, Saturday morning yoga, or a tete-a-tete under an umbrella. You may as well be hanging out — Shreebin’ if you will — in Casey and Ren’s backyard.