Press, a library cafe with a new look

The Press cafe features some creative lighting design elements. (Photo made in September 2017 during construction of the cafe. (Photo courtesy of Charles Payne/Gensler.)

There’s a new cafe on campus. 

Located on Moffitt Library’s fourth-floor patio, Press opened on Monday to provide coffee and other fuel to the approximately 10,000 visitors who enter the building every day.

“The cafe architecture is totally unique,” said Sukhjit Johal, head of Library Capital Projects and Facilities Management, which oversaw the recent renovation of Moffitt’s fourth and fifth floors.

Press, designed by the San Francisco-based global design firm Gensler, features exterior metal panels with square-shaped cutouts that allow light generated by LEDs to shine through.

“The full impact of the design (is) best viewed in the evening and at night, when the lights on all sides are turned on so the box glows like a jewel box,” Johal said. “When closed and lit, it takes on a bit of a mystery.”

Students visited the new Press cafe on opening day. (Photo by Jami Smith for the UC Berkeley University Library.)

The cafe also incorporates a door from an aircraft hangar to open and close the facility, and to provide some shade or protection from the rain for patrons waiting in line during its Monday-Friday operating hours.

“Because of the size and location as well as the beautiful aesthetics, I think this place is more of a fun ‘snack shack,’” said Daryl Ross, a UC Berkeley alumnus who operates Press, as well as the Free Speech Movement Café on the first floor of Moffitt, and eateries at the law and business schools.

The menu at Press reflects campus tastes, with such items as the Green Machine smoothie with kale, pineapple and ginger; soups like red lentil dal and spinach; paleo muffins; and roasted turkey wraps with honey garlic aioli. 

Read more about Press here