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Modesto shop focuses on craft and community
Preservation Coffee & Tea in downtown Modesto is one of the few hand-crafted coffee houses left in a world dominated by corporate chains.

When Kody Moret wakes up every morning, he, like 83 percent of his fellow Americans, drinks a cup of joe.

Unlike most other Americans who are rushing out of their homes to drop off their kids or hurrying to a meeting, however, Kody makes another cup, and then another, and then another.

For Moret, it’s not just coffee, it’s an art form.

Moret, an employee at Preservation Coffee & Tea in Modesto, is one of the few craftsmen of coffee left in a world run by corporate chains who seem to have a stronghold on the popular morning beverage.

Moret said the philosophy at Preservation Coffee & Tea isn’t about pumping out as many cups as humanly possible, but about crafting a handmade beverage that allows customers to sit back, take a minute and enjoy their drink.

“We definitely believe in the angle of craftsmanship,” said Moret. ‘We want people to sit down, enjoy their drink, and really appreciate the moment they’re in.”

Technically, Preservation Coffee & Tea is still a newbie in the downtown Modesto scene. The shop opened this spring, but the store basically came as a continuation of Serranos Social Club, the longtime coffee shop that was the former occupant of the current establishment.

Serranos came to a close after long-time owner Tony Serrano landed a gig with Ecuador, a coffee roasting company based out of San Rafael.

The store was closed, but Modesto coffee lovers still wanted their brew.

Their salvation came last April, when Preservation Coffee & Tea opened up shop at the site of the previous Serranos.

“It was really about getting the shop opened as soon we could,” said Moret, who has worked at both establishments over the last four years.

Although under different names, the menu for at Preservation Coffee & Tea mimics that of its predecessor, with the store still using specialty roasters and high end teas as the tenets of their artisan style of coffee brewing.

The difference, Moret says, is the type of people who seem to be flocking to the new coffee house.

“We’ve definitely tried to be more inclusive,” said Moret. “The new ownership has really understood that they want people from all over the community.”

The difference between Preservation Coffee & Tea and larger, corporate stores, Moret said, is the amount of individual attention given to each order.

“We can always find something that will cater specifically towards someone,” said Moret. “We’re more than willing to throw something together.”

One of the store’s more  popular drinks, the Serrano Mocha, was a brainchild of former owner Tony Serrano. The beverage became so popular in fact, that it was featured in a nationally syndicated beverage magazine.

Along with Serrano Mocha, drinks like the “Havana” and the “Clubhouse,” have yielded more than favorable reviews from customers.

“If you’re passing through and need a coffee break, stop here because it’s worth it,” said squarespace reviewer Roberto A. “Try the ‘Havana Cuban’ coffee, take a seat and enjoy.”

Preservation Tea and Coffee is located at 1030 J St. (at 11th Street) in Modesto. The store is open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. open Monday through Friday.