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Breakout Brands

LA coffee chain Go Get Em Tiger wants to elevate consumers’ daily caffeine fix

Third-wave coffee concept plans growth with through new locations and coffee subscription service

Is stopping by the local coffee shop one of the best parts of your day?

Go Get Em Tiger thinks it should be.

The eight-unit chain based in Los Angeles was co-founded in 2013 former Intelligentsia Coffee workers Kyle Glanville and Charles Babinski with the purpose of transforming the daily grind of picking up a dose of caffeine into enjoyable part of a person’s day.

Improving that experience starts with a different way to order. Go Get Em Tiger locations are designed to resemble a bar where customers can place their orders and can sit for long or short periods of time.

“We don’t do lines,” said Glanville. “Once you get used to the notion that at a coffee shop you don’t have to find a warm body and stand behind it until your name is called is just way easier and way nicer,” said Glanville.

Most customers take their coffee to-go, and each member of the staff has tablets that enable ordering throughout the store as well.

About 60% of orders at the chain are coffee only, but the menu also features a variety of food items available for dine-in or take-out.

The chain’s signature order is a flight: a double shot of espresso followed by a fizzy and hoppy tea and finished by a cappuccino with house-made almond macadamia milk.

Seasonal specialty drinks showcase the chain’s quirky and consumer-facing brand identity that was founded by two men who came from, in their words, the “fringey, most mad scientist part of the coffee world.”

Breakfast and lunch foods are served daily including a yeast raised waffle with either maple syrup and butter or berries, ricotta and honey and Cured Lox Toast with salmon, chimichurri, seeded granola, pickled mustard seed, fried capers on rustic sourdough.

Educating customers about quality coffee is a priority for the brand.

“There’s a big difference in price between fine champagne and cheap champagne, but cheap coffee and artisanal coffee may only have a $1-$2 price difference” said co-founder Kyle Glanville.

The chain, which has its own roastery, offers a mail-order coffee subscription and features educational videos about home-coffee preparation on its website.

Go Get Em Tiger plans to have over 30 units by the end of 2021 and over 70 within the next five years, potentially even moving beyond Los Angeles. But for now, the chain is comfortable with its L.A. roots and hopes to take over the coffee scene there.

“We love LA and we just want to serve it,” said Glanville.

Editor's note: The 2020 Breakout Brands — emerging innovative restaurant chains with fewer than 10 units that have proven growth potential — were selected and interviewed before the coronavirus pandemic hit the restaurant industry. Nation's Restaurant News has chosen to highlight these innovative brands as planned, but their growth plans may have been impacted by recent events. For our most up-to-date coverage, visit the coronavirus homepage.

Contact Holly at [email protected]

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