It’s Tuesday morning and Nick Edmundson of Heartwood Coffee Roastery is making his rounds. He’s delivering our custom ‘Purpose Fuel’ coffee blend. Heartwood roasts their organic fair trade beans on Monday and Thursday, and delivers it the next day to ensure their superior quality coffee is ultra fresh. This in-person connection is unique and part of the reason we love Heartwood Roastery.
Nearly two years ago, Nick didn’t know the difference between quality coffee and store-bought K-cups. But, his coffee-loving friend, Jim Sanders, expanded his horizons. As a wedding photographer, Nick brought entrepreneurial spirit to the table while Jim—a plumber for most of his life—brought his love of coffee and can-do attitude to their partnership. The two decided they could start a business.
Originally, Nick and Jim wanted to start a cafe, but with the cost of overhead so high they decided the time wasn’t quite right. So, they started roasting their coffee in Jim’s garage in Burton, Ohio. Once they got their name and heavenly coffee out there the company blew up. By attending events in Cleveland and interacting with the community, the loyalty to and demand for Heartwood Roastery coffee grew so much that Nick and Jim are opening a bricks and mortar store in Hudson, Ohio.
We asked Nick why they decided on the name Heartwood Roastery.
“Honestly, we were just throwing a bunch of different names around. Somehow Heartwood came up and we both liked it. Jim and I both love the outdoors and love the name. After researching what Heartwood is (the part of a tree that delivers all the nutrients to the rest of the tree) we loved it even more and it really fit what we were going for. We really had a vision of community and just a fun environment for everyone when we started the company. When we came up with the business name and our slogan, “Grow Together,” it fit right in with the name Heartwood, sticking to the whole nature/tree vibe. Oh, and coffee grows on a tree, too!”
Heartwood consistently sources the best coffee from around the globe, roasting beans from Ethiopia to Columbia—anywhere on the equator where coffee is grown. All coffee is handpicked at the perfect time, to ensure the standards of high quality they have come to produce, and roasted specifically to achieve the desired flavor. Even the highest quality coffee can be compromised if roasted incorrectly. This is why Heartwood Roastery puts so much love and effort into roasting their coffee.
Heartwood launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to help open their new shop. With a few days left to go they have already surpassed their goal. They are looking to make the cafe a comfortable, fun destination. Whether it’s for a date, a study session, or just to spend some time sipping good coffee, they want the shop to be a place for customers to stop by and enjoy.
Nick knows that serving good coffee is one thing, but creating a great atmosphere and educating people about their coffee is another ball game. And they are up for the challenge.
The History of Coffee
According to the National Coffee Association, coffee has a complex history with no clear understanding of its exact origin. An Ethiopian legend says that a goat herder named Kaldi first discovered the potential of coffee beans in the ancient coffee forests on the Ethiopian plateau. “By the 15th century, coffee was being grown in the Yemeni district of Arabia and by the 16th century it was known in Persia, Egypt, Syria, and Turkey.” This resulted in the creation of public coffee houses.
The Coffee House
Coffee houses were started as a space for collaboration and conversation. Originally called qahveh khaneh, coffee houses began to appear in cities across the Near East. “Coffee houses quickly became such an important center for the exchange of information that they were often referred to as ‘Schools of the Wise.’ Coffee houses were quickly becoming centers of social activity and communication in the major cities of England, Austria, France, Germany, and Holland.”
One of our favorite TED Talks, Steven Johnson’s “Where good ideas come from,” says that coffee houses were a place where people would gather to share and discuss ideas. Many great inventions have coffee houses to thank as the place of origin for some of their early ideas.
We at Prosper like to think of our office as a coffee house. It’s a place where we come every day to collaborate with one another, with our clients, and with others in the community. We share ideas, brainstorm solutions and invent creative strategies. Thus, we thought it was important to have our own stock of delicious, invigorating coffee.
Our Crafted Coffee
As deep as our devotion to coffee is, we recently realized we still have a few things to learn. Did you know that the lighter the coffee the stronger it is? A few weeks ago we had a coffee tasting at our office to sample all of Heartwood Coffee Roastery’s heavenly varieties. Co-Founder Nick Edmundson broke the news that our beloved dark coffee is nothing more than burnt beans that have been overly roasted. Lighter blends here we come!
We asked Heartwood to create a special Prosper blend for us and voilà – Purpose Fuel was born. Co-Founder Jim Sanders told us a few more details about our new coffee:
“The Prosper for Purpose coffee is a Single-Origin coffee, meaning it comes from one single country, from several really great farms in Colombia actually. Purpose Fuel is roasted a little darker to bring out some really nice chocolaty notes and a great smooth body. The coffee itself is from a small group of producers in the Tolima and Huila regions of Colombia and is selected because of each farmer’s commitment to high quality hand-picked coffee. It’s really cool to see that these producers get rewarded for their insistence on only the finest crops. We, of course, are the beneficiaries of their hard work!”
We invite you to stop by our coffee house any time! Conversation and coffee are our fuel and we’d love to share them with you.