It was like walking into a scene from a television show.
When the Fire Dept. Coffee team dropped in for a visit to the Chicago Fire Department’s Engine 18, it all looked so familiar.
Engine 18 is where NBC films its hit drama “Chicago Fire.” It just so happens that Fire Dept. Coffee is the coffee that fuels Engine 18.
They have a subscription for regular delivery, so they never run out of coffee. The visit was our way of saying thank you for your service and thank you for supporting Fire Dept. Coffee.
Because they are regular customers, we knew what their favorite was. You won’t be surprised to hear that the original “Chicago Fire” heroes get a regular delivery of Fire Dept. Coffee’s Original Blend.
We brought them some more fresh roasted coffee on our visit. And we delivered a Fire Dept. Coffee mug to every firefighter in the house.
Located in Chicago’s University Village neighborhood, Engine 18 has become a tourist attraction for fans of the show.
The men and women at Engine 18 have earned a reputation as friendly hosts, welcoming fans of the show — when time allows — and showing them around. They even sell the occasional hat or T-shirt, with proceeds supporting firefighter charities.
Fans are constantly coming by the firehouse just to see it in real life and maybe catch a glimpse of Taylor Kinney, who plays Lt. Kelly Severide, or Jesse Spencer, who plays Capt. Matt Casey.
Of course, like any firehouse, “Chicago Fire” is an ensemble cast and everyone has a role to play. Everyone gets their turn in the spotlight.
But we weren’t there to see the actors. We were there to see the real deal. People like Firefighter Sanchez and Driver Engineer Hermann.
The firefighters of Engine 18 are even better than advertised. They gave us a warm welcome and a full tour.
“Firehouse 51” — its name on the show — appears on signs both outside and inside the station. From the truck bays to the hallways, it’s all just as you’ve seen on TV.
As firefighters in one of the nation’s largest cities, they stay busy, so we were grateful for the opportunity to spend some time with them.
And we’re grateful that they are fans of Fire Dept. Coffee. To bring them bags of their favorite coffee and hand out mugs was such a rewarding experience.
Men and women like them in firehouses (and police stations and construction sites and office buildings) everywhere are the reason we do what we do. It’s an honor to know that the coffee we roast can help them stay alert and focused, to push through those long shifts and get the job done when the call comes in.
We visit firehouses and other customers all over the country, and the experience never gets old. So thank you to Engine 18 and Fire Dept. Coffee fans everywhere.
Keep drinking that coffee. We’ll keep roasting it!