Coffee is one of those things in life that makes everything feel better. A simple pleasure that makes us pause – even on the busiest of days – to ponder and put things in perspective. It wakes us up, brings us together, enhances a brunch and finishes a great dinner. And for anyone that’s enjoyed a Tofino beach walk with a coffee and the sound of the surf, it can be a religious experience.
But as local roaster Tofino Coffee Co. will attest, there’s a science to good coffee.
Michael Farrow is almost as passionate about coffee as he is about Tofino. Captivated by the area over 20 years ago, he never left. But he eventually got tired of having so-so coffee and two years ago, decided to do something about it. He talked to java experts, educated himself on the fine art of coffee roasting and 500+ pounds of beans later, he felt he got it just right. Tofino Coffee Co.’s roasting operation was launched on Industrial Way with Old Growth Dark Roast; a blend of beans from four regions: Central America, South America, Indonesia and Ethiopia.
Besides fresh roasting the beans to perfection, Michael says the secret to Tofino Coffee Co.’s delicious blends is letting them sit for a couple of days. In coffee-tech terms, it’s called “gassing the beans.”
When asked about Tofino Coffee Co.’s philosophy, Michael declared, “There’s a sense of ceremony and joy in coffee and I want to celebrate that.”
(Juan Valdez would approve.)
After successful uptake from local grocers, hotels and resorts (including yours truly) along with rave reviews from coffee fans, Tofino Coffee Co. has now expanded to a café located at Campbell and Gibson, next to Shelter restaurant. There’s outdoor seating, plenty of parking for cars and bikes, and lots of yummy edibles from RedCan Gourmet and Six Hundred Degrees Bakery. They’re also blending organic fruit smoothies and serving soft ice cream that you can enjoy straight up or as part of an Italian treat called an Affagato; hot espresso poured over ice cream (mmmm).
As part of the café launch, you can look forward to trying the new Pacifica blend which is made of mostly beans from South America (which Michael says gives it chocolaty undertones), then beans from Africa to round out the flavour, followed by Central America to add a brightness. You can try both Tofino Coffee Co. blends by the cup at the café, or purchase them in one-pound bags to make at home. These bags can be used in Welcome Gift Bags for your guests or as Favours on your tables at your wedding reception.