MEET ALEX FROM NEIGHBOURHOOD COFFEE ROASTERS
Let us introduce you to Alex Ridgway, the owner of Brisbane’s Neighbourhood Coffee Roasters - and our super star coffee roasting partner for our fleet of mobile coffee carts. Working alongside his wife Steph, this duo had a beautiful vision to create a community drawing people together through quality products and sustainable practices.
Their coffee storey started in 2015 when they began roasting in Sumner Park, not long before opening their flagship coffee store, Rainworth General in Bardon. Not stopping there, they then found a super-cool industrial warehouse space at the new Albion Fine Trades precinct which is now home to their coffee roasting and production operations, as well as their second Brisbane café.
Their award-winning blend ‘Golden Ticket’ coffee blend is what you will find at our events and being used by our barista's and mobile coffee carts, and involves a blend of Indian, Sumatran and Ethiopian beans. You also need to try their turmeric latte’s, house-bottled Japanese iced coffee, nitro coffee (on tap), filter coffee and the cafe’s own cold-pressed juices.
As the team at Gathering Events receive A LOT of questions about who we partner with for the delicious coffee beans for our mobile coffee carts, we wanted you to get to know Alex a little better...
What draws you to the wonderful world of coffee?
I had a unique upbringing, living above a silver service French Restaurant in Brisbane. It had a brew bar for 30 plungers, which serviced the 80 seat restaurant, that’s my first memory of coffee. So the smell of coffee has a special place for me.
I should have been a chef, I don’t use recipes and love to work with my senses so working in some area of food/beverage production was a natural decision.
Tell us about Neighbourhood Coffee Roasters’ beginnings.
Some simple ideas have always been with me.
When you truly appreciate great food, you always come back to the origin of what you're cooking, how it was grown or how was it raised.
Coffee is no different and after opening a 40m2 cafe in 2009 under a office tower, I turned a roaster on under my house and started buying from coffee farms not wholesalers in the first year and never looked back.
What makes Neighbourhood Coffee Roasters so darn great?
Firstly, we only buy great quality coffee, when we work on creating blends, we work hard to understand our individual coffees and their strengths and then have clear ideas about what we want/ can achieve.
Our Bardon Store, a restoration of a character general store from the 50’s and a 400m2 NE facing kitchen garden creates a space where people relax and connect.
The kitchen garden brings a new dimension to our family life and to our staff. We bring a community together through a business which encourages people to engage and eat local and source ethically.
The roastery is designed with the purpose of engaging and immersing the customer in the process of what we do.
Tell us about the beans?
Well, we source beans from pretty much all over the world and there delicious.
Any special story inspire your branding?
Neighbourhood Coffee Roasters was born with the love of good coffee and a unique idea. An idea of encouraging customers, the community and neighbours to rethink and value the relationship of not only the farms, but the communities of where our coffee comes from. A concept of connecting neighbourhoods.
What do you love about Brisbane?
The climate and beaches are fantastic as is Moreton Bay.
When do you have your first coffee, and your last coffee of the day?
At home, I have stocked up with our Golden Ticket coffee bean and I’m good for filter coffee or a short long black around 9am.
What kind of coffee do you have?
I drink most brewing methods to be honest.
What is the day in the life of a roaster?
Usually wake up next to my 4 & 6 year old kids.
I recently finished training someone to roast coffee so I’m working back at Bardon a few days a week and enjoying the garden after so much rain.
Do you dream about coffee?
What’s next for Neighbourhood?
More of the same, we would like to build more relationship between our garden and kitchen this year.
I’l like to drink more coffees from other parts of the world and travel to origin soon.
Albion Fine Trades, 97 Sandgate Road, Albion
Rainworth General Store, 58 Rainworth Road, Bardon