History


The Eureka Moment

It all began in 1988 when Roger Hillyard broke the glass insert of his French press and couldn’t find a store that sold replacement parts. Roger scoured San Francisco for a space to open a coffee and tea paraphernalia store and settled on 1315 18th Street on Potrero Hill. He named his new shop after his grandfather Jack Farley who disappeared without a trace in 1921.

Community in a Cup

When the Loma Prieta earthquake hit in San Francisco in 1989, Potrero Hill was one of the few neighborhoods with power and water. People were home from work, wondering how to fill their days and Roger decided to open early (he was open 2pm-10pm in the beginning) to provide a place for the community to gather. From that moment on, Farley’s started opening at 6:30am and firmly established itself as more than a place for a cup of joe. It became a place for the neighborhood to gather and be in relationship, a place for Community in a Cup.

Farley’s Goes East

In 2008, Roger’s son Chris and his wife Amy decided they wanted to carry on the Farley’s tradition and bring Community in a Cup to Oakland. They took a risk on the fringe neighborhood of Uptown and opened in June of 2009. Ten months after opening the café in Oakland, they opened another location in the up-and-coming town of Emeryville and now proudly steward the tradition of creating a human space where people can enjoy great coffee, food and conversation on both side of the Bay.

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