SM Boulevard — A Bay Area coffee shop with a cult following is now serving in the city by the sea.

Philz Coffee, founded by coffee connoisseur Phil Jaber in San Francisco, has opened its first Southern California location on Santa Monica Boulevard at Fifth Street.

After 25 years of coffee experimenting, Phil claims to have perfected 19 different blends, which he began by selling by the cup and beans by the bag. Philz prides itself in creating quality cups of customizable coffee, said Santa Monica store manager Nicole Scott.

A line went out the door on Thursday at the store’s soft opening, which invited the public to complimentary beverages, their most famous being the iced mint mojito coffee.

About 75 percent of visitors were returning Philz Coffee customers from the Bay Area, according to CEO Jacob Jaber.

“So many people have asked us for such a long time to open in SoCal, and we’re finally doing it,” Jacob said. “We are going to plan to do multiple stores.”

Philz Coffee customer Jantzn May visited the soft opening twice on Thursday and said that he has been to San Francisco locations many times. The Philz staff is always friendly and the store has a nontraditional, unique approach to the coffee business, he said.

Philz sets itself apart from other coffee shops by the staff’s dedication to making each customer happy and satisfied, according to Scott.

“Our mission is to better people’s day, connect with the community and really get involved,” Scott said. “Seeing the team happy and the guests happy, that’s really what it’s all about.”

Philz officially opens today.

“It’s a cup of love — it’s not just a cup of coffee,” Jacob said. “It’s art and every cup is personalized to your liking because our philosophy is the best coffee in the world is the one that comes to your taste. You don’t leave until you’re 100 percent satisfied.”


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