High Grounds Coffee Roasters is a beautiful new coffee shop and entertainment space coming to an awesome location in Glassboro NJ… a prominent High Street corner directly across from Glassboro’s Town Square at Rowan Boulevard.
The Grand Opening is set for Monday September 18th, and owner Chuck Garrity invited me in yesterday to get a preview tour of his new coffee shop and roastery… so that I can share the experience with 42Freeway readers!
High Grounds Coffee Roasters is Chuck’s second business location, the first being the Death of the Fox Brewery and Coffee Shop in Clarksboro NJ
To be clear, the new Glassboro location does NOT have a brewery… but that comes with other pluses in that by focusing on the coffee shop aspect for Glassboro, Chuck was able to add a performance stage and offer food!
Honestly, I am very impressed with the High Grounds buildout. And of course I’ve had the coffee in both Clarksboro and the new Glassboro shop… delicious!
Freshness and quality is so important to Chuck, that to achieve maximum freshness they buy their beans directly from the New York shipyards soon after the beans have arrived in this country!
High Grounds Glassboro will also offer a variety of non-alcohol drinks and mocktails, which he says a fast growing category in the beverage industry.
Chuck and his team have a way of designing a space that is not only functional and smart, but it’s also a beautiful space just “brewing” with character and eye pleasing elements… which is sometimes difficult to achieve with a brand new buildout.
He carried over a lot of the design elements from the Clarksboro location including the signature rustic wood ceiling beams and the color scheme on the walls; light tan and a darker red on opposite walls… but at the same time the experience in Glassboro is also very unique with different design elements, a wall of large glass windows and a dedicated stage area!
And sure they are more than happy to be a “grab-and-go” go coffee stop for those rushing off to work or class… Both High Grounds Glassboro and the Clarksboro location are succeeding in offering more of a full “just hanging out” coffee shop experience.
Everyone loves watching the Friends TV show where the cast would hang out at the coffee shop, laugh and cry.. or even play guitar and sing “smelly Cat!”. Well Glassboro now has their own style Central Perk style coffee shop and it’s called High Grounds!
Keep reading for more on High Grounds! Chuck and I also filmed a video interview while I was there and I hope to have that online in a few days.
High Grounds Coffee Roasters – Glassboro
High Grounds Glassboro has actually been in the works for several years, facing some delays related to construction impacts from the pandemic.
But the process actually started even before that… as Chuck and the team took time researching locations in several South Jersey towns, making sure his next business venture had all the right elements for him to bring all his goals together
He found the perfect spot in Glassboro.
Technically High Grounds is not within the Rowan Boulevard complex, but the coffee shop’s prominent corner location directly across from the open Glassboro Town Square Plaza… may actually be a better situation as the coffee shop and signage can be seen for a long distance across the Plaza.
In fact the new High Grounds signage went up this week on the corner of the building, and as Chuck and I were inside his new coffee shop days ahead of the opening, several young people walked over from Rowan Boulevard and came up to the front doors… clearly hoping to come in for a fresh cup of coffee… lured in by the recently placed signage.
The corner location features a front wall of tall glass windows which helps connect the coffee shop with the outdoors and the Glassboro town square across the street. During the day it lets in plenty of sunshine!
And at night the High Grounds interior lighting should be noticeable to folks in the area!
High Grounds carries a lot of the same design aesthetics of the Clarksboro (Death of the Fox) location with a balance of wood grain features, black steel accents, and wall coloring alternating between tan and red.
Overhead rustic wood ceiling beams in two locations adds to the character and coziness of the space.
And while we’re all focused on helping out supporting small businesses, something people may not know about Chuck is… he takes it to another level by having high level roles with organizations such as the Gloucester County Chamber of Commerce, the National Federation of independent business, the Entrepreneurship Advisory Committee at Rowan College, Board Chair at the Two Bridges Wine, Beer and Spirits Trail… and also is a leading voice in supporting breweries in South Jersey.
I bring this up now because he really “walks the talk” when it comes to supporting South Jersey businesses!
When you visit High Grounds Glassboro, take a moment to appreciate the beautiful woodwork, the table tops, the bar area and the overhead rustic ceiling beams.
Chuck worked with Cobbs Mill in Salem County to have them provide and create the beautiful table tops, signature woodwork design pieces, and even the really cool bark at the front of the coffee bar area.
Chuck was explaining to me that the trees actually come from South Jersey… Cobbs Mill is able to acquire trees right in the region, and bring them right to the shop for milling and design.
When you rest your coffee cup, laptop or phone on the table tops at High Grounds… they are resting on wood that came from trees in South Jersey, milled and designed in Salem County!
The High Grounds space can accommodate 85 people. There’s a variety of high top tables, perimeter counter seating with great views out to the Glassboro sidewalks and Plaza, a bar counter area and of course the leather couch nook!
Chuck even installed the privacy curtains to lounge area.
It’s one large open space but it provides a variety of experiences whether you’re looking to converse with friends on the sofas, meet new people while sitting at the counter bar area, or quietly working with your laptop on one of the counters in front of the large glass windows.
High Grounds Performance Stage
Music is a big part of Chuck’s life and with High Grounds he really wanted to make that a core aspect of the experience.
So in a front corner of the room he has developed a dedicated raised stage area which could easily accommodate several performers.
While he’s still working out the full plans and schedule for performances and other art uses, he hopes to have entertainment at least three nights a week, some with scheduled performers and also open mics.
A the ceiling above the stage is the rustic wood ceiling beams, and tucked in between those beams are a variety of stage lighting.
The stage location is smart in that it’s a great position to have full exposure to the coffee shop of course.
But it’s also along the front High Street windows so that in the evenings when performances are taking place and the lights are shining on the stage… folks outside will see what’s happening and hopefully pop in.
High Grounds: Coffee and Food
In the opposite corner of the room (from the stage) is a dedicated coffee bean roastery. Yes they are roasting their own beans inside the Glassboro location! Carrying on an idea from the beer brewery industry, there’s a glass window so that as you’re looking at the menu (which is painted on a wall), you can look in and see the staff roasting fresh coffee beans
All this talk about design and music.. but the star of the show is coffee!
And High Grounds Glassboro takes their coffee seriously,
In my prior chat with Chuck he tells me they source their coffee beans directly from the suppliers in New York… meaning they are getting their beans directly from the shipyard where the coffee beans are first being delivered to America!
It’s literally the fastest way that coffee beans can be purchased right from where they were grown in other countries, and High Grounds has streamlined the process to get them to their South Jersey locations and into your fresh cup of coffee… As fast as possible.
As you would expect they offer a full coffee menu including coffee, tea, espresso and cappuccino, specialty lattes… and even a variety of flights and non alcoholic drinks.
All of the coffees are delicious and fresh. I’ve tried both traditional cups of coffee and their iced coffee, and honestly the flavor is one of my favorites.
Things also get interesting with the specialty lattes where they infuse interesting flavors such as funnel cake, banana Nutella, Twix, cinnamon bun and more!
The food items lean more towards a traditional coffee shop offering, such as croissants, danish, bagels, muffins, cinnamon rolls and more.
They also offer daily soups and breakfast sandwiches!
The kitchen area does not include a full overhead range hood which would be required for hot food preparation such as a grill or fryer… but I don’t believe that was ever in Chuck’s plans, although he will likely expand the menu over time once the High Grounds Coffee Roasters shop settles in.
They open Monday September 18th
And as I mentioned, I recorded a video interview with Chuck while I was at High Grounds and I hope to have that online over the weekend. We talk about the new Glassboro location, his Clarksboro Death of the Fox brewery and Coffee Shop, and even delve into the challenges of small businesses and the brewery industry in New Jersey
Links and Locations
High Ground Coffee Roasters (Opening September 18th)
100 West High Street
Glassboro NJ 08028
Death of the Fox Brewery and Coffee Shop
119 Berkely Road – Suite B