Dilworth Event Recap

Last month, Stockton Graham & Co. held a “meet & greet” event with former Dilworth Customers in Charlotte, NC. The main purpose of the event was to bring Dilworth Coffee customers together with their roaster and vendors. At Stockton Graham & Co., we believe that face to face interaction is an essential part of understanding customer needs, and that interaction is not always convenient for busy cafe owners. For that reason, Torani, Big Train, Two Leaves & a Bud, Bunn, Vitamix, Taylor Freezer, Dade Paper and Carolina Espresso Services all came to Charlotte, NC. Representatives for these vendors contributed information and ideas to attendees, who in turn were able to communicate their needs directly to vendors. Don Keen and others from Just Coffee Inc. allowed us to meet at the old Dilworth Roastery.

The event was a complete success in that the cafe owners were able to meet with the Stockton Graham & Co. team and vendors. New promotions for 2011 were unveiled, cutting edge equipment was showcased, and recipes were swapped. With the amount of information and experience in the room, everyone seemed to benefit from the event.

In an effort to promote coffee education in the cafe community, Stockton Graham & Co. has made PowerPoint presentations from the event available on our website. Hopefully, this information will help to further build relationships between vendors and cafe owners, while promoting a deeper understanding of the potential versatility their products possess.

Reid Jackson
Stockton Graham & Co.

The LA Coffee Business School & SGC Partnership

January 17, 2011 – Raleigh, NC – Stockton Graham & Co. is proud to announce its continued support of The Los Angeles Coffee Business School. Stockton Graham & Co.® is a coffee roaster as well as a wholesale specialty beverage, equipment and accessory supply company. With over fifteen years of experience in the coffee business, Stockton Graham & Co. finds an additional niche in industry education. The team at Stockton Graham & Co. makes a strong effort to share their knowledge through outreach programs such as “Barista Certification” and “Coffee College.” These programs ultimately introduce students to the fundamentals of café operation, but there is always a strong emphasis on business education. The Los Angeles Coffee School also teaches basic barista skills, but they place an even larger weight on business operation fundamentals. The common goal of both organizations proves to be the same, promote business education. For this reason, Stockton Graham will continue to show its support through sponsorship for 2011.

The Los Angeles Coffee School is an innovative institute dedicated to the promotion of business principles specifically developed for coffee shops. Students who attend are coached by Ed Arvidson, a well-respected member of the coffee industry for more than thirty years.

Arvidson, who is also a leader in café consulting, is unlike most of the café professionals I have come in contact with. Upon listening to his lectures at “Coffee Fest” in October, it is clear that Ed is a businessman first and a coffee enthusiast second. His ability to show highly skilled people how best to showcase their talents has enabled hundreds of new cafés to succeed. CEO and founder of Stockton Graham & Co. Jeff Vojta comments, “We have worked with Ed on a number of our accounts over the years and his insight and assistance have consistently enabled those accounts to perform at levels higher than they would have otherwise. His instruction is based on his first-hand knowledge and observations tested and proven time and time again. We consider it an honor to be involved with his operation.”

With such a common outlook on the industry, the cooperation between Stockton Graham & Co. and The LA Coffee Business School is a no-brainer. The positive results are beneficial for everyone in the industry.

Reid Jackson
Stockton Graham & Co.

 

Coffee as an Education

Do you ever find that the passionate curiosity of your customers is difficult to match? Perhaps your guests want to know more about the origin of your top seller, or they may wish to know more about the flavor of their favorite coffee. Do your baristas even know how to describe your house blend? As a coffee shop owner or manager, it is important that you and your employees stay knowledgeable about your product. Customers can sense genuine knowledge and experience, and they will react to that knowledge with trust. In addition to selling great coffee, any good coffee shop needs to portray a sense of authority on all things coffee. This principle applies to all business, but it is often overlooked. You certainly wouldn’t trust a sommelier who did not know their way around a vineyard, and most consumers find comfort in the fact that their barista knows the difference between Indonesian and Central American coffee.

Hopefully the image of your café already includes expertise as an element, but learning in any form is a constant process, not a final destination. You and your baristas need to constantly update yourselves on the latest trends and information that your customers secretly desire. Even if your customers do not ask for a little history on their cappuccino, they would appreciate a morsel of knowledge to share with their friends.

This week, Stockton Graham & Co. has released updated information on all single origin coffee and we are working to bring you more information in an accessible manor. Although Stockton Graham & Co. offers hundreds of blends, espresso roasts and flavored coffee, each of these trace their roots to only sixteen single origin coffee varietals. These single origin coffees are blended and roasted at various levels to create different options that help your coffee shop stand out. The updated information regarding our single origin coffee varietals can be found here, and each description includes a printable flyer which can be used around your shop to help inform your customers. This sort of information is invaluable to your business, and your customers will build confidence in your expertise as your baristas exhibit their knowledge. Continue to explore and learn as much as possible in any way you can, and check our website periodically for more educational materials. Also, feel free to contact our customer care associates at (919) 881-8271 to find out information regarding specific blend and espresso details.

Reid Jackson
Stockton Graham & Co.