At first glance, Social Good Roasters looks like any other third-wave coffee shop in Japan. Tucked away on a side street in Tokyo's Kanda neighborhood, the space is a chic, minimalist affair in concrete, wood and shades of gray, with plenty of light streaming in through the floor-to-ceiling windows.
A bright red, cheeky-looking shoebill — the Social Good Roasters' logo — greets visitors at the door. It's quiet inside: The music is muted, and the main noise is the gentle rasp of green coffee beans being sorted by the half-dozen people seated around a central table.
Given the location, atmosphere and even industry, it might surprise first-time visitors to learn that Social Good Roasters is a social welfare organization that specifically employs people with disabilities such as Down syndrome and autism and teaches them everything from how to sort unroasted coffee beans to the process of brewing and roasting.