Yousif Sabah is the guy behind the @saccoffeescene Instagram account with a passion for coffee and a love for Sacramento
Beside a tall window in Milka Coffee Roasters’ cozy Victorian turned cafe, Yousif Sabah contemplates his next @saccoffeescene Instagram post.
Sabah, 27, migrated to the United States from Iraq with his parents and three siblings in 2006. He was in the middle of eighth grade and in addition to starting high school, he was arriving in a foreign country where he didn’t speak the language. English is Sabah’s third spoken language after Arabic and Aramaic. At 13 years old, Sabah said it was at first a shock starting a new life, but Sacramento’s quirks grew on him over the years and into adulthood.
“I started exploring the town and I started falling for it,” Sabah said. “I’ve established myself here.”
Outside his job as an IT consultant, Sabah developed a creative eye for photography and an unquenchable fascination for coffee. One of the things that changed his view of Sacramento was working at Origin Coffee and Tea, a humanitarian-focused cafe in Rocklin that recently closed.
“Being on the other side of the coffee bar really opened my eyes,” Sabah recalled. “That sparked the coffee love for me.”
Sabah began learning about espresso, various brewing methods and just how much detail it requires to make a good cup of coffee.
In September 2018, Sabah created the @saccoffeescene Insta account with a post of a cappuccino from Fourscore Coffee House in Roseville. The goal was simple: support local coffee shops, build relationships with local cafe owners and roasters and continue stirring up his love of cof fee. Now, Sabah has more than 2,500 followers and counting.
A typical post on @saccoffeescene is an overhead shot of a coffee beverage, usually a cappuccino with latte art or seasonal drink on the corner of a table. The caption is a quip about coffee or more extensive details about a new cafe.
But Sabah has something else brewing.
While talking with his friend and co-worker, Will Adams, the two came up with the idea to start a podcast. Adams had the equipment and audio recording experience, and Sabah had the connections to the local coffee industry. The blend was perfect.
“We are two guys who can’t be without coffee,” Adams said.
Dirty Spoons Podcast will feature upcoming interviews with cafe owners, discuss the atmosphere of different shops and provide recommendations for listeners. The first episode, released Feb. 13, was on a new Vietnamese-inspired coffee shop in the Arden area called 18 Grams. As Sabah and Adams converse easily together, the vibe is relaxed with indie music in the background. Ideally, the podcast will one day be mobile so they can record with all the live spoon-clinking, steam wand-hissing and customer-welcoming sounds.
“Sacramento is a really good example of showcasing that no matter where you come from and what your background story is, you can fit into the community and have your own impact on the city,” Sabah said.