A cup of joe on the house right outside Humphreys

by ChiHon Kim
Stripes Korea

In a world of double espresso this and extra foam-no whip-extra caramel-venti-caramel macchiatos-shaken, not stirred, grabbing a cup of coffee has gotten complicated and expensive!

Near Camp Humphrey’s Anjeong-ri Gate, a new tiny coffee place is giving you the caffeine buzz without the annoying barista and is even giving it to you for free! Yes, for free!

Head to Free Café-Cannan, a little shop next to CANAAN HOUSING, a real estate company office. There is no staff manning this coffee joint and there is no charge to stop in for a cup of coffee, or even a Cup Noodles. It’s on the house!

This café is CANAAN HOUSING owner Sander Shim’s way of thanking the military community for its business.

“I created a small fortune through the realty business, providing real estate services to U.S. soldiers since 2002, and now I wanted to give something back to U.S. Army community,” he said.

The café is modest and looks like a breakroom you might find in your office. Simply walk in, make your own cup at the self-service station and hang out as long as you’d like. If you’re lucky, you might catch some tunes as volunteer musicians sometimes take to the café for impromptu performances.

Café Cannan will soon also feature travel books, a piano, darts and board games, Shim said. In addition, the café is also looking for volunteers to teach music, English or Korean, to be tour guides, and to hold craft classes. It is a great meeting spot and Shim’s way of giving thanks is community building at its best.

“I always thank you all your service, and this space is for you,” Shin said. “Just stop by and enjoy free coffee any time you like.”

kim.chihon@stripes.com

Things to know


Address: 33, Anjeongsunhwan-ro 89beon-gil, Paengseong-eup, Pyeongtaek-si
Hours: Mon – Sat:  noon – 9 p.m., Closed on Sunday
Mobile: 010-6248-3651, 031-691-0079
E-mail: realtycanaan@gmail.com
Note: The café offers free Wi-Fi and you’re not allowed to bring alcohol, smoke or vape inside.

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