A haven for coffee lovers with a penchant for refined roasts, Vancouver boasts a handful of coffee micro-roasters providing connoisseurs with an array of delectable beans roasted and brewed locally
If Vancouver can be defined by anything other than its majestic natural beauty, it would be coffee. With a shop on just about every corner of every commercial street, there is no shortage of options for java fans.
But while great cafés are a dime a dozen, a great cuppa joe brewed in a shop that not only brews but also roasts its own beans locally is a rare gem. Here are five Vancouver favourites.
Milano Coffee Roasters
Boasting one of the city’s coolest views from its W. 8th Avenue café and roasting facility, Milano Coffee Roasters has a long and illustrious history with coffee, rooting back to an Italian roasting technique known as 'torrefazione.'
Brewing and roasting on B.C.’s west coast for nearly 30 years, Milano was founded by an Italian coffee aficionado and passed on to protégés Brian and Linda Turko and Barry and Colleen Henry in 2003. Continuing in the Italian coffee tradition, Milano specializes in quality blends of premium espresso, as well as drip and French press varieties.
Milano Coffee Lounge & Roasting Facility – 156 West 8th Ave.
Turk’s on the Drive – 1276 Commercial St.
Milano Espresso Lounge – 36 Powell St.
Milano Espresso Bar & Gelato – 849 Denman St.
JJ Bean Coffee Roasters
A true family business, JJ Bean’s roasting expertise dates back to the '20s, when owner John Neate’s grandfather took up the trade. After his grandfather started his own roastery, Neates Coffee, in 1945, Neate’s father and then Neate himself joined the business. Looking to venture out on his own years later, Neate took over several existing coffee businesses, eventually rebranding to JJ Bean Coffee Roasters.
Today, JJ Bean roasts its coffee locally five days a week to provide fresh product to its dozen locations throughout the Lower Mainland.
12 locations in Vancouver, North Vancouver, and Port Moody
Trees Organic Coffee & Roasting House
A supporter of the Cafe Femenino Program, a social program that provides access to socio-economic resources for women coffee growers in rural areas, Trees Coffee prides itself on its commitment to importing organic and fair trade beans from around the world.
Roasting beans in small batches daily from its Granville Street café, Trees Coffee supports five locations in Vancouver and Richmond with high quality, organic coffee blends, as well as its house-made gourmet cheesecakes.
5 locations in Vancouver and Richmond
49th Parallel Coffee Roasters
A born and raised Vancouverite, owner Vince Piccolo enjoyed the art of coffee so much, roasting was the obvious next step in his café career. Launching 49th Parallel in 2004, Piccolo views the business as a labour of love. Shipping his buyer off for 10 months of the year, Vince stays behind to fine-tune the roast on each variety of coffee to achieve its fullest potential.
In addition to serving a committed clientele at both its original Kitsilano and fledgling Mount Pleasant locations, 49th Parallel also supplies its specialty roasts to cafes across North America.
Kitsilano Café – 2152 West 4th Ave.
Mount Pleasant Café – 2902 Main St.
Rocanini Coffee Roasters
With a flagship café located in the heart of Richmond’s Steveston neighbourhood, Rocanini Coffee Roasters also serves its freshly roasted coffee out of its roastery tucked away on quiet W. 5th Ave. With plans for expansion throughout the city, Rocanini sells beans wholesale, as well as coffee-related gourmet items such as brewing equipment, kettles, and grinders.
Steveston Café, 115-3900 Moncton St.
Vancouver Roastery, 127 West 5th Ave.