If all the stars align, a new Andytown Coffee location will open at 800 Great Highway by early November. The owner and co-founder of the Outer Sunset coffee business, Lauren Crabbe, says their fifth location — and first in the Richmond District — will be an ode to the historic Playland at the Beach. The old amusement park was housed at the westernmost edge of Golden Gate Park, right where the new shop will take up residence. Importantly, the park was the birthplace of San Francisco’s major contribution to frozen treats, the It’s-It, and Crabbe says Andytown will be paying homage to that dessert in a big way: an It’s-It affogato. “It’s basically the best thing ever,” Crabbe says.
The original sandwich comes from the mind of George Whitney who thought to place two oatmeal cookies on either side of a scoop of ice cream in 1928; once the park was demolished in 1970, the sandwich was made and sold out of a shop in SoMa before going wholesale. Andytown’s riff splits the It’s-It in twain, with coffee poured on top. The new shop will be the only Andytown to serve the new item, which has no set price yet. The team is testing a variety of versions, starting with the classic vanilla It’s-It, but are looking forward to different combinations. “What if we pair a single origin natural processed Ethiopian coffee with a strawberry It’s-It? I bet it’s hella delicious,” Crabbe says. Otherwise, fans of the local business can anticipate a fairly similar menu (and, yes, Snowy Plovers will be on deck). Andytown will also open a sixth location in Menlo Park as a part of the 6.4-acre mixed-use development Springline.
Before the big opening, Crabbe invites fans to swing by the new location on Saturday, October 15 as the business introduces itself to the other side of the park. To celebrate “Edge Fest Community Day,” the Andytown coffee truck will pop up in conjunction with the Surfrider Foundation, the Refuse Refuse clean-up crew, and neighbors throughout the Avenues, to provide family fun and activities from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The event will be hosted by Ocean Plant, the primary tenants of the 800 Great Highway building. Crabbe is looking forward to introducing the business to the neighborhood, offering tours of the new cafe, and, of course, dishing up It’s-It affogatos.