It was all a dream! Hailing from Sunset Park, Brooklyn- Dane Demchak, his wife Lindsay, and their three year old son and CEO Omri have been successfully running City League Coffee, and serving their community in more ways than one. Dane graciously took the time to sit down & chat with us to discuss everything from his leap into entrepreneurship, his love for his wife & son, to our mutual fascination in all things hip hop. One thing is for sure, this guy has an insatiable desire to build & create and his personality is as bold & energizing as the coffee he brews.
Breakthrough Marketing Group: Dane, thanks for taking the time out to chat, really excited to share your story.
Dane Demchak: Absolutely, and thank you for recognizing and showing love, we really appreciate it.
BMG: So, you & your wife run City League Coffee & you kicked things off at the top of this year. Could you talk about what inspired you to venture off and start this business?
Dane: Definitely, so it is my wife and I and our three old son Omri who is our little helper. I was working for a few years for a non-profit, primarily doing career guidance for residents in our neighborhood. It was a super rewarding job in that it was great to have an impact, but I felt myself getting complacent.
BMG: That’s great that your son helps out and can be involved, getting him started early. So career wise you were looking for a something a little more challenging as far as personal development?
Dane: Right, exactly. I wanted to grow and try new things. I always am seeking to learn and grow. Well, that and I get bored very quickly. I always knew I had exciting ideas and I needed a way to get them out and reach people. I wanted to be able to contribute.
BMG: Totally understand that. Definitely can tell your efforts and energy are going to good use at City League. Could you talk about the name City League and the color palette you used on the logo, how did that come about? I really enjoy the vibrant colors you chose.
Dane: Well thank you very much, means a lot to hear you say that. The City League name comes from a nostalgic place. It comes from those days growing up playing sports with your friends, I think everyone can relate to that, and it also has a strong aspect of community embedded in the name which is very important to us. As far as colors, I’m glad you enjoy them, we actually started with more of neutral colors to begin with but switched to the bright colors to represent our coffee.
BMG: I love that, and like you said its relatable, everyone has those stories of playing baseball in the backyard with their group of friends. The details are personal, but the theme is universal.
Dane: Exactly, that’s what we’re going for. We want every coffee we provide to be personalized & intentional while also being accessible to anyone.
Verses From The Abstract
BMG: That’s a good point. Could you talk about the brewing guide you created and what the intentions of that are. I love how you guys are providing value and knowledge to people through the work you’re doing.
Dane: Well that’s just it. As my wife and I learned more and more about coffee throughout the years we realized just how much the general public was unaware of, so we really made the brewing guide as a way to educate and help with a customer’s brewing experience at home.
BMG: It’s extremely informative, I learned a lot by reading through it. As a side note, the copy on your site is so clearly intentional, there’s no filler or fluff it all serves a purpose & the descriptive language used is powerful. I love the nods to 90’s hip hop like the ‘til infinity line from Souls of Mischief & some others scattered in there, it’s done so tastefully. The writing as a whole is so powerful- for instance, this sentence “We meticulously micro-roast every batch to bring out the brightest and most vibrant characteristics of each coffee, allowing the natural flavor and tasting profile to shine through.” I mean c’mon man.
Dane: This is actually crazy hearing you say that, you have no idea how long those type of sentences took. I have a tendency to obsess over the details, because I feel like they make such a difference. 99% of people wouldn’t consciously pick up or notice or comment on those things that you are but, we have always felt it makes a difference and matters even more to the 1% that do get it. It is moments like this where I’m proud we take the extra time.
BMG: It absolutely makes a difference; you can tell your brand is thoughtful & that shows in every last detail.
Dane: I’m glad. All of these things that are starting to come to life were once just thoughts in a notepad, but I knew they would be put towards something bigger.
BMG: You guys are manifesting them through your actions. You mentioned the importance of giving back to the community, what are some of the ways City League has been getting involved in your area?
Dane: We try to be like you said as intentional as possible & keep things in the community & help other organizations grow just as they help us. Whether that’s partnering and collaborating with other startups through our subscription service and working with local businesses. Right now we work with a local Mexican restaurant and together we use their horchata to make our special and popular Horchata Cold Brew.
It Was All A Dream
BMG: Wow, that sounds amazing! I’m going to need to try that. That must’ve been a hit this summer. I saw that you guys had been doing pop-up events this summer- how did those go?
Dane: You need to for sure, they are a fan favorite. Yes, so we were primarily at the Lower East Side at the Hester Street Fair on Saturdays this summer. It was really a great venue to get the brand out there. We actually brought Omri a few times and he was our salesman.
BMG: Those must be pretty incredible moments, getting to see something you had imagined once come to life & experience it as a family.
Dane: It’s so special. That’s what my wife and I have always wanted is something that we can build for him and that he can experience with us. Really had an epiphany moment standing there in Manhattan with my wife and my son, selling coffee that we made, it’s just, it’s a dream.
BMG: It seems like you guys are laying such a solid foundation to build something long term and sustainable with City League. What is next on tap for the company?
Dane: Well, we really are excited about continuing to grow. Long term we would like to start hosting events & workshops in the community. We’d love a spot where we could host Open Mic nights, or use some of my previous experience and offer free career services such as resume building workshops, things like that.
BMG: Those are admirable goals, and ones that I’m sure you will reach the way you guys are operating. I’m looking forward to seeing what’s next & I’m going to need to make my way to Brooklyn to try that Horchata Cold brew.
Dane: You’re always welcome here; we’ll see you soon!