Something's brewing at Dripolator Coffee Bar: the menu boards, artwork and seating areas are all changing.
But perhaps the most noticeable difference will be the shop’s new name. Owner Jay Weatherly has embarked on a full-out branding metamorphosis. Dripolator will become High Five Coffee Bar.
The coffee house has evolved since he bought the business from the Black Mountain-based Dripolator Coffeehouse, Weatherly explains. He hopes the new name will reflect the changes he’s made, and distinguish his business from the unaffiliated Black Mountain shop.
“We are celebrating something that's been happening for a while,” he says. “The analogy for me is that I'm a different conductor on a train, and now I am changing tracks — and have changed tracks — and now we need to put a new sign up on the train because we're doing things differently.”
At the heart of the re-branding and renovations, the coffee will remain the same. The shop will continue to serve Counter Culture Coffee. Weatherly might add a few new drinks and specials the menu, but he says he feels good about the drinks the shop already serves.
Weatherly sees High Five (and Dripolator) as part of the “Third Wave” of coffee, a concept developed in the early-2000s by the folks now behind Wrecking Ball Coffee Roasters in San Francisco. In brief, Third Wave coffee shops focus on coffee as an artisanal product. “Third Wave is … just injecting integrity into every piece of the process of serving coffee, sourcing coffee, working with the whole process of getting coffee from a seed on a farm to a cup on your table,” Weatherly says.
He hopes High Five will feel fun, even as it keeps pace with the Third Wave movement. “There are a lot of coffee shops in this Third Wave spectrum, they have a real serious tone to them,” he says. “When you walk in, I want [High Five] to be a place that feels super-comfortable for whoever you are.”
In that same spirit of fun, Weatherly will celebrate the name change on Saturday, Dec. 15 with a party. He promises coffee, goodies from the Chop Shop, Short Street Cakes, Buchi and Dobrá Tea, plus music, door prizes and high fives. The event runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
High Five Coffee Bar (formerly Dripolator) is located at 190 Broadway Street.