Off-Grid, Artisan Coffee Roaster
Let Vast Mountain elevate your cup.
Past the end of the pavement, off the grid, at the southeastern end of the South Chilcotin mountain range, Vast Mountain stands.
Overlooking the confluence of the Bridge and Yalakom Rivers, scarred by fire, scoured by wind, and sculpted by the slow advance and retreat of glacial ice, Vast Mountain stands.
On its lower slopes, the scent of Ponderosa pine is mingled with the fragrance of the Douglas firs. The sound of flowing water underscores the looping trills of Townsend's solitaires, the drumming of the grouse. And if you lift your gaze to where Vast Mountain's two peaks touch the sky, you cannot help but feel your heart lift, too. It's this place, and the feeling it inspires, that informs the way we roast our coffee.
The State of Mind
Here at our homestead roastery, we've come to understand that an exceptional cup of coffee, like the mountain, is more than just the sum of its sensory pleasures; it's a state of mind.
Like sitting on the front porch in the waking light of spring, while hummingbirds and honey bees make music in the clouds of blossom on the cherry tree.
Lazing in the shade, half-dreaming, with the lake a perfect mirror of the mountains, rippled now and then by rising trout.
Mid-afternoon, mid-winter, gazing from the warmth of the kitchen window onto the smooth white contours of the snowy yard, while light begins to leave the sky.
Or gathered around a table with a group of friends, as rain sheets down the autumn glass and conversation starts to sparkle, like an antidote to grey.
Good coffee. It's our purpose, and our passion.
When the nearest town is nearly 40 clicks away on a pot-holed, mostly unpaved mountain road, you learn to do a lot of things for yourself. Like grow your own food, produce your own power, build your own house, cut your own wood. Or, if coffee is your passion, roast your own beans.
In our case, that meant starting on our quest for good, fresh coffee, with a cast-iron pan, a wooden spoon, and a wood-fired cook-stove in the kitchen of our straw bale house. Which works just fine, if you like the smell of roasting smoke, and you only want a couple of cups. But since providing for the rest of the community is something folks out here in the Yalakom Valley have long believed in, we quickly had to graduate to a hand-cranked popcorn maker on the back porch barbeque. From there, we made the leap to an actual roasting machine, all shiny brass and matte black steel.
Throughout our evolution, batch by batch, our Quest has always stayed the same:
just really good, fresh coffee.
Love of coffee, Love of place.
For us, that means not just the place where we've been fortunate enough to find our roots, at the foot of Vast Mountain, but also the places where the coffee that we love is grown, around the world. Which means we choose to roast only beans that have been grown and processed organically, and traded fairly.
It means that water, flowing freely down the mountainside,provides the micro-hydro electricity that lights our home, and spins the fans and turns the drum of our roaster.
Because, when you stop and think about it, there's really only one place after all: this planet that has given life to all of us, and that we share with every other living thing.