The New York Times today published a piece on the Bay Area roaster land grab going on out East: West Coast Coffee Roasters Are Lengthening Their Reach – NYTimes.com. Ritual Coffee Roasters, Barefoot Coffee Roasters, Blue Bottle Coffee, and Four Barrel Coffee are each mentioned — lugging their roasting equipment over the Rocky Mountains and through the Great Plains of our nation’s mid-section, panning for retail gold as prospectors in the uncivilized coffee wilderness of our nation’s Atlantic Coast.

Blue Bottle Roasters crossing the Nevada desert, lugging their Probat roaster in search of richesWho knows what obstacles they might find among the savage tastes and customs of the local natives? But these brave men and women are taking our nation’s pioneer spirit to heart, from sea to shining sea, spreading our Manifest Destiny of good coffee for all.

Seems a lot like it, doesn’t it?

On a more serious note, we did learn something from the article — such as the word “java” was first coined on the coffee docks of San Francisco. Otherwise there’s Ritual’s Eileen Hassi mentioning the importance of green bean seasonality, Intelligentsia taking over Ecco Caffè and establishing a roaster in Potrero Hill, and of course some of the obligatory third wave gibberish.

UPDATE: April 10, 2010
It’s not just San Franciscans who see it as The Great Coffee Rush. The New York Times has also made reference to “the Australian coffee diaspora.” This and other Australian influences on the New York City coffee scene are described in tomorrow’s The Age (Melbourne, Australia): Our coffee boys full of beans in Brew York.

I particularly liked The Age‘s comments about the flat white — i.e., “they’re considered uncool back home” — and yet they’re appearing all over New York. Last night I had dinner with a friend living in London, and he says the coffee shops there are crawling with flat whites these days.