Short Street Coffee Roasters is built on the foundation of friendship, history, family connection and the passion to provide that great cup of coffee. Scott Jones and Kevin Crouse have never been neighbours, but they have discussed moving into the same suburb often. They come from opposite sides of the bridge (rather than tracks). They both believe in community and that is revealed in this newest project of theirs, they say, “everyone knows each other in a short street.” Coffee is all about relationship and connecting friends as well as strangers around a common table. Scott has been in the Sydney coffee scene for the past 35 years and Kevin was born in the coffee capital of the United States, Seattle Washington.
They first met when Kevin became a customer of Scott’s acclaimed Australian Independent Roasters (AIR Coffee) to supply the widely known and missed Mars Hill café in Parramatta. In 2012 they joined company and rebranded Scott’s successful project as Black Drum Roasters. During this it became clear to café customers that they were committed to relationship and great coffee. Never ones to stand still or be satisfied with the status quo they have chosen to focus on what they do best, build a family of people who love coffee. Whether you provide coffee for others, make it at home (or on the road), or grow it at origin, they want to be part of your neighbourhood and want you to be part of their family. Short Street Coffee Roasters, -Welcome Home!
Founder, master roaster and CEO Scott Jones has worn a few hats. While working in accounting for a large multinational, Scott gave into a friend’s suggestion that he move into coffee and hasn’t looked back since. Having worked as a packer, roaster, delivery driver and book-keeper what drew him to coffee initially was the relationships that form over coffee and that’s what inspires Scott at Short Street Coffee Roasters. This journey has taken him from Sydney to Vancouver, Seoul as well various coffee growing regions.
During his time, Scott has been able to develop relationships with farmers and the supporters and distributors of the green bean, bring new people into the roasting industry while building their skills and knowledge and refine the tastes of customers. Having been in the industry since 1986, Scott has seen Australia move from tea to filter coffee, to espresso and now to specialty coffee with an attention to unique origins and flavour profiles. Scott is now developing this further, experimenting with cold brew techniques that remove the need for one of coffee’s until now fundamental ingredients, hot water.
What makes this dedication payoff is the light that Scott sees go on when people discover the flavour profiles in their coffee, what Scott describes as “taking them on a journey to understand what they’re tasting.” For as much as coffee has been drunk for centuries it is this experimentation with the cutting edge of technology together with relationships that keep Short Street Coffee Roasters being a part of the neighbourhood.
“What we’re experiencing with trying different crafts and technologies is unlocking the flavours that are there”
Directing the journey from bean to cup.
Our head trainer Kevin is a bit of a romantic, especially when you get him talking about coffee. Kevin’s first dates with his wife were over coffee at small cafes playing backgammon and since then he has opened his own cafe that saw love and inspiration flourish between its walls. Whether that has been a space for exhibiting artists, performing musicians or passing on a passion for coffee through barista training, Kevin’s dedication to the power of coffee is infectious.
While you might have seen him behind the machine in Parramatta in Western Sydney, Kevin has also been able to take his approach world-wide, training students in Michigan about social enterprise and speaking with people in Kenya and Tanzania in Swahili, unlocking relationships through coffee. He’s even taken his passion to the stratosphere, making kalita, espresso and aeropress on planes, always adjusting for the perfect brew.
Dialogue is his chosen method of business, training and relationship. “It’s about the conversation, whether it is a bit of small talk, which won’t last long with me, or a chat about brewing methods; I really want to talk about deep things, personal or global,” Kevin will say with a faraway look in his eye. He is quick to reference what he calls his dark past, he will rarely shy away from any topic except for sport, he just doesn’t no much except for those he has played. Things usually come back to one of the beverages he loves, first coffee, then whisky and also craft beer. It is often much easier to have that conversation with a drink in your hand, and it goes pretty personal quite quickly.
As Kevin himself says “I want to make a difference in people’s lives, and coffee has been my platform”.