Specialty Coffee Roaster, Stockton Graham & Co., Turns 20

STG513-ID-stickerJeff Vojta, co-founder and President of Stockton Graham & Co., a specialty coffee roaster and wholesale beverage, equipment and accessory distributor located in Raleigh, NC, announced that the company will celebrate 20 years in the business of coffee on May 12, 2014.

Stockton Graham & Co. started as a coffee shop, Classic Coffees, on Six Forks Road in 1994. The single store grew to include roasting and the business evolved into Classic Coffee Roasting Company. As the wholesale and distribution business grew, the business moved to the current 4320 Delta Lake Drive, Raleigh address in 1999.

To better reflect the wholesale mission and values, the name of the company was changed to Stockton Graham & Co. Today, their mission of roasting great coffee and helping customers succeed in the business of coffee is still a reality.

“Our success has been built upon helping our customers succeed in serving exceptional coffees and handcrafted beverages, while providing outstanding customer service,” said Vojta. “Our team of dedicated coffee professionals is committed, not only to expanding our knowledge of coffee, but to help our industry further develop and promote specialty coffee standards; thus ensuring our industry and company’s continued growth and enabling 20 more years of coffee excellence.”

Stockton Graham & Co. is committed to helping specialty retailers build superior and successful coffee businesses. For more information about Stockton Graham & Co. and its products, or to place an order, call 800-835-5943 or visit www.stocktongraham.com.

About Stockton Graham & Co.:

Founded in 1994, Stockton Graham & Co. is nationally known for roasting great coffee, developing customized specialty coffee and beverage programs, providing operators the keys to building enduring specialty coffee businesses, creating and promoting coffee industry standards and trends, and offering customers unsurpassed knowledge and tools to serve quality coffees and other hand-crafted specialty drinks. For more information, visit www.stocktongraham.com.

Celebrating May Anniversaries

In honor of Stockton Graham & Co.’s 20th year in business, we have been celebrating important dates for the company. This May, we are celebrating two pivotal Stockton Graham & Co. team members’ anniversaries, Jeff Vojta and Robbie Oakley.

polaroid-jeffJeff Vojta is celebrating 20 years in the coffee industry! Being a part of this business since 1994, Jeff has served in many roles including, barista, coffee shop owner, roaster, delivery driver, green coffee buyer and trainer. His love for coffee lead him to start a coffee shop, “Classic Coffees” and the rest is Stockton Graham & Co. history. He started roasting his own coffees and selling to the local area and now serves as our CEO.

 

Jeff has traveled the world looking for great coffee and speaking on specialty coffee, including a trip to Dubai and Nicaragua. He loves learning about the different cultures involved in coffee growing as he travels and trying all the local cuisine along the way.

“This month represents twenty years of our company being in existence, and I have had the privilege of being present twelve of those years.  I first met Jeff on a buying trip in Costa Rica, and could see the passion and excitement he had not only for his company, but also for the relationships that connected his business to specialty coffee. There are far too many examples to relate as to what I have learned from Jeff, but perhaps the biggest thing is that one should never stop learning in this industry.  Specialty coffee is his passion, and while I was not here during our company’s infancy with the retail locations, the success of Stockton Graham & Co. is a testament to what Jeff built in those early days.  Here is to twenty more years, Jeff!  We are all honored to be part of this amazing team of professionals.” – Brandon Riggs, Director of Coffee

“I’ve had the pleasure of working with Jeff since we designed the logo and corporate identity for Classic Coffees Roasting Company in 1997. He’s helped me through a lot both professionally and personally throughout the years, and has given me and my staff a lot of great opportunities to do fun, creative work from helping to name the company in the early days, to the new positioning and branding with cut paper graphics. I am thankful to have Stockton Graham & Co. as a client and Jeff as a friend, and I admire his big heart and big ideas!” – Wendy Coulter, CEO – Hummingbird Creative Group

 

Robbie OakleyThis May marks Robbie Oakley’s 2nd year at Stockton Graham & Co.! Starting with us in 2012, Robbie handles many tasks in the warehouse throughout the day. He considers himself responsible for accurately picking and packing each customer’s order and ensuring that it arrives in a timely and intact manner. His genuine concern for the customer makes Robbie a great member of our team. Robbie is a great worker and leader and we are glad to have him as part of our team!

“While Robbie has only been with Stockton Graham & Co. for two years, he has become an indispensable member of our team. Not only does he work hard to ensure customer orders are sent out on time and correct, he helps to build team work and spirit in the back with creative team building events.” – Jeff Vojta, CEO

“Robbie’s dedication to our customers is evident in how he has transformed our shipping/receiving department.  He has implemented several new ideas to ensure customer orders are processed and shipped correctly, and is an integral part of our warehouse team as the leader.  His vast background knowledge of deadlines and time sensitive projects has added new dimensions to our capabilities.  His creative nature and leadership inspire everyone here at Stockton Graham & Co.” -Brandon Riggs, Director of Coffee

Thank you both for your hard work!

Twenty Years Tells Us… Keep It Fresh!

Spring CleaningIt’s that time of year again when we start our Spring cleaning and begin looking ahead at the warmer months. While keeping a neat and tidy business is important, so is changing things up a little. This can be done a number of easy and inexpensive ways.

Start by moving furniture and fixtures around. This can change the vibe of the store and can even highlight certain products. When we owned retail outlets this technique was especially helpful when certain retail items weren’t moving as quickly we liked. Older items began to sell better, and we didn’t even have to mark them down!

Spring CleaningYou can keep it fresh by adding new items to your menu. Offer seasonal or limited time only options. Customers really respond to new and interesting choices and will often spend more for them.  One of our customer’s introduced a cupcake latte once and sold more of those than mochas during the promotion period.

We’re keeping it fresh too. You can expect to see several new products this Spring (like Sweet Heat from Torani). So, be sure to call us at 800-835-5943 and ask our Customer Care Associates for ideas on what’s new, and what’s old that can be made new again.

Twenty Years Tell Us… Training Never Ends!

Coffee CollegeThe industry is not the same as it was in 1994. Starbucks was not a household name, “cappuccinos” came from machines at the gas stations, and espresso was something only serious coffee drinkers would attempt. Today, you can get reasonable facsimiles of true espresso beverages almost anywhere. Even novices say “espresso” without an “x.” As the industry has changed, so have the standards and the trends.

Staying on top of the newest trends, and training your staff accordingly, helps keep you relevant and up-to-date. Anticipating customer desires before they ask is one of the highest levels of customer service you can provide. Use your new found knowledge to educate your customers, thus raising the bar for your competition who may not be so savvy. For example, do you offer a featured espresso such as a single-origin option? Do you offer single-cup brews? Does your menu include tea lattes? Your Stockton Graham & Co. support team is a great resource for suggestions and guidance on these and many other topics.

Stockton Graham & Co. Coffee CollegeWhile trends are important, updating and ensuring consistent standards is paramount.  Staff calibration, or “retraining,” is a great way to ensure that your customers enjoy the same drink no matter who makes it. We found this to be a particular problem for a client with several locations. After some intensive “Train the Trainer” sessions, followed by in-store recalibrations, this client reported a substantial growth in beverage sales at the end of the fiscal year. Consider sending your trainer to our Coffee College to get updated, recalibrated and refreshed. Coffee College is offered several times a year and is conducted by our own industry professionals who bring many decades of combined experience to the table for you.

STG513-ID-stickerOur industry continues to grow and evolve with new innovations emerging all the time. To remain on the cutting edge, know that you can rely on Stockton Graham & Co. keeping up with the newest products and keeping your staff well-trained is just aspect to ensuring great customer service and the vitality of your business.

Give us a call at 800.835.5943 today to schedule your staff recalibration or click here to view our Coffee College event calendar!