Profiled in the WSJ, Blue Bottle founder James Freeman brings a laid-back, West Coast philosophy to his budding bean-roasting empire. He’s turned a lifetime fascination with coffee into a business after working as a musician (he played clarinet in regional symphonies in Northern California) and ecscaping the dot-com startup boom. Each cup of coffee at his freestanding stores is individually brewed, to produce the freshest coffee experience possible, and waiting in line at their cafes is actually part of the experience. Customers don’t need to choose a size (there’s only one) or between specialty flavors (there are none).

Blue Bottle Coffee is served at Gramercy Tavern in Coi in New York, and there are currently two freestanding Blue Bottle cafes: one in San Francisco and New York, with an additional NYC location coming to the Highline soon. Apparently New Yorkers aren’t totally incapable of waiting—the company expects sales to reach around $20 million this year.

Read the full article to discover how Japanese coffee culture influenced Freeman and how what isn’t there at Blue Bottle makes all the difference.

[via The Wall Street Journal]