Equator Coffee Roasters is a small-scale coffee roaster with two locations, one in Ottawa and their main headquarters in Almonte, Ontario. Equator Coffee Roasters set up shop in Almonte and not only do they have a cafe there, but they also roast all of their 100% organic specialty coffee there. Here they roast the coffee and supply it to local restaurants and cafes in the Ottawa Valley. There is also a "Cupping Lab", where the coffees are tested and customers can be taught about quality, freshness and proper brewing technique.
"We source directly from small-scale producer cooperatives through our own roaster-member co-op, Cooperative Coffees. Co-op Coffees is a green coffee importing co-op made up of 23 like-minded roasters throughout North America. Through the co-op, we are privileged to have direct, transparent, and sustainable relationships with our trading partners."
Are you sitting down? Are you ready? I've got some ground shaking, world changing news to share with you.
I have never had a cup of coffee.
"What?" "How do you even survive?" "You are not living!" Yeah, yeah, yeah - I have heard them all. Relax. It's not that big of a deal. I've tried a sip of a half coffee / half steamed milk beverage a few times...but, coffee just isn't my cup of tea. (See what I did there?)
So, when a tour of Equator Coffee Roasters was included on my 24-hour itinerary in Almonte, I was stumped momentarily. Then it hit me - Michelle, who was joining me for this trip - is a HUGE coffee lover! Bingo - bango - I had a plan! So, after we got back to Toronto the next day - I asked her to send me her thoughts on the experience.
"The next stop on our 24 hour escape was at Equator Coffee Roasters. Being a coffee lover myself, I was instantly enticed by the inviting smell of freshly roasted coffee! I couldn’t wait to get my hands on one. It is a one of a kind, sophisticated cafe that you can enjoy a hot cup o’ Joe in a comfortable calming environment. We were drawn in by everything on display from fair trade to local made items, maple syrup to hand crafted jewelry, this cafe isn’t your typical java joint. We learned that Equator Coffee Roasters actually, in fact, is completely fair trade coffee which is always appealing. Equator offers tours to the public and we were lucky enough to get a private mini-tour, even on our tight schedule. On our way to the back I noticed that coffee-inspired art covered the walls, which is also pretty admirable. We learned that the beans were certified organic. They are carefully picked and roasted in small batches to ensure high quality. We saw a few big machines back there and the aroma was marvelous! The beans come in from different regions like Africa and
South America. At the end of the tour I tried a few samples and I must say that Freakin' Good coffee was my favorite. The eh!spresso came in close second. I would have had some dessert that was displayed and looked mighty tasty but I didn’t want to spoil my dinner! I would definitely go back there when I visit Almonte again!"
As I have mentioned - I love supporting local businesses, especially when I'm on a trip visiting a small town. It was really great seeing the passion that the employees showed. They truly loved what they did and appreciated working for such a conscious company. As Michelle mentioned, the tasty offering available at Equator Coffee looked scrumptious, but we didn't want to ruin our dinner appetites so we had to pass. They had a variety of sandwiches, soups and mouth watering baked goods available though!
Disclaimer: The tour and tasting were complimentary as part of the Press Trip, however my views are, as always - entirely my own.