LINCOLN PARK — The on-site coffee roaster sits center stage in Lincoln Park's newest Clark Street coffee shop, Fuel Station.
Fuel Station at 2465 N. Clark St. is one of the few independent coffee shops in the city that will be roasting its own beans.
The giant yellow roaster is housed behind glass walls inside the shop. And when Fuel Station's 21-year-old roaster Justin Beavers fires it up to more than 400 degrees, customers will be able to watch.
"A lot of the time when you go to the bigger places like Starbucks, you don't get the freshest coffee," Beavers said. "You don't know when it was roasted."
Fuel Station's owner Sean Tehrani partnered with Uncommon Coffee Roasters, of Saugatuck, Mich., which will be the only coffee served at Fuel Station.
"You can't just be another coffee shop," Tehrani said.
Another offering that Tehrani hopes sets his first coffee shop apart will be a "roaster for a day," program that will let customers come in a roast their own choice batches.
Customers will be able to roast up to 16 pounds in a day, according to Beavers.
"It's going to be a very educational shop," he said.
Beavers left Uncommon Coffee Roaster's Michigan location and moved to Chicago to head up the roasting effort.
"This guy eats, sleep and thinks coffee," Tehrani said.
Fuel Station will also be serving sandwiches, salads, fresh juices and smoothies.
Three local bakeries will be delivering pastries to the shop each morning.
Fuel Station will be hosting a grand opening Saturday and will be roasting coffee on-site and offering samples all day, according to Tehrani.
The shop, which also features a large outdoor patio space, took over the former Caribou Coffee location that shut down in April.
Since the closing of Caribou, a nearby Starbucks has seen a boost in business, according to Tehrani, and Fuel Station hopes to grab those customers back.
While the coffee shop has only been open a week, Tehrani has taken a liking to the coffee business and has big plans.
"I'm hoping to expand and have more of these Fuel Stations around the city," he said.