Vida Sharp and Thomas Emanuel

The Full Story

THIRD WHEEL COFFEE

In March of 2020, Vida Sharp and Thomas Emanuel returned to San Francisco from Davidson College and San Diego State University, respectively. They were wildly unaware of what the next two years would bring about, as was the rest of the world. 

In June of 2020, Vida and Thomas met for the first time when Noe Cafe opened its doors to the public. Quickly, they were inspired by the way in which the cafe became a neighborhood hub on which the community heavily relied for socialization. The two developed a fondness for their work as their relationships with customers evolved into something more meaningful; in experiencing coffee's ability to bring people together, their love for coffee blossomed.

In awe of the power of coffee, the two began fantasizing about opening their own cafe. They had already begun writing down every idea that came to mind and reflecting on the values of their future business. One day, while browsing eBay, they came across an offer that was too good to pass up: an eleven foot long coffee cart powered by an electric bike. This was the beginning of Third Wheel Coffee. 

 

Navigating San Francisco’s overly bureaucratic permitting process with an oversized tricycle, however, was not easy. After spending months trying to make it work, they realized it was time to rethink their plan. So they went and bought an antique liquor cabinet, modified it, learned a bit about electricity and plumbing and voilà — a mobile espresso bar that fits in the Prius V.