Type: Café

Produces: Pitas & Hummus

Location: Iowa City, IA

Miles from Coop: 1

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Yochai Harel is the owner and operator of Cortado, an italian-style espresso bar and cafe that offers a variety of warm caffeinated beverages, fresh baked goods, and Mediterranean-style sandwiches and salads in downtown Iowa City. It's a favorite among coffee connoisseurs and students from the university.

Yochai began working in coffee shops in Tel Aviv, Israel before moving to New York and later to the Iowa City area with his growing family. He dreamed of opening his own shop with a European influence and within a few years he and co-owner Ryan O'Leary did just that. In 2017, they opened Cortados across from the Old Capitol dome off of Clinton Street and quickly established a following in the area.

As for the name?

It's one of Yochai's favorite coffee drinks.

“The cortado was how I used to get jobs,” Harel said.

“People would say, ‘Show me what you can do,’ and I would make them a cortado. The balance of it is great.” 

Cortado has since expanded, offering their house-made hummus taïm -that's delicious hummus in Hebrew - and fresh pitas at the Co-op and we're excited to have them.

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New Pi's Grocery Team Lead says about the partnership,

"Working with small businesses like Cortado is what New Pioneer is all about. Helping take a vision these local vendors have and turn them into a reality is something we take great pride in. It's been a pleasure working with Yochai and you certainly can't beat snacking on some warm Cortado pita and fresh hummus he makes."

Write-up abridged and adapted from The Gazette.

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