Kaldi's director of marketing present at Catapult
Frank McGinty, director of marketing and culinary development for Kaldi’s Coffee, spoke at an event titled “Seed to Cup: The Life of Coffee.”
“You would think that cup of coffee you have would cost $40 instead of $4 when you take into consideration all that goes into the process of getting those beans to our coffee cups,” McGinty said as he held up his own Kaldi’s beverage for the crowd at Catapult Creative House Thursday morning.
The presentation featured more than just the process but the heart of Kaldi’s and its mission to create great experiences for customers and guests.
“When Mrs. Jones walks in we know what she wants, we call it in that she is on her way and it is there waiting for he when she sits down,” McGinty said. “Not only does it create a great experience but it creates brand loyalty.”
“The farmers we buy our beans from in Colombia — not Columbia, Missouri, either,” McGinty laughed, “but the country, they are such exceptional people.”
“We have grown relationships with the farmers, educated them on what we desire in our coffees. These farmers know what we want,” McGinty said. “The whole process from harvesting the bean to the cup is huge — the picking and de-pulping process and the creation of drying beds for the beans. There has even been a coffee color-coded bracelet created so the pickers know when the bean is at its best color for the greatest flavor availability.”
He said Kaldi’s also wholesales and supports its own shops with wholesalers’ products, such as cups and espresso equipment.
“We realized we use a lot of cups, and the more you buy the better deal you get, so we decided to wholesale cups to other coffee shops and sell the highest quality Italian roasting and espresso machines to businesses as well as our own,” McGinty said. “You have to have good people to get your product to customers, and dedication to quality and commitment to good customer service is key to creating the ultimate experience. Sometimes people work out and sometimes they don’t. We have all kinds of people from all different areas who help make Kaldi’s Coffee what it is.”
McGinty encouraged the students in attendance to pursue opportunities for adventure and experience outside the United States.
“To students and entrepreneurs, my advice to you is if you get the opportunity to get out of this country and travel the world, live somewhere else and only have the means to pay for room and board, do it,” McGinty said. “It will be the best experience of your life and you will learn so much. My best time in my life was my time I lived in Italy; it influenced who I am today.”
According to the Kaldi’s Coffee Company’s website, their vision is “To be recognized and respected as one of the leading specialty coffee companies in the nation by providing an exceptional coffee experience to our customers and guests.”
Fuel, the coffee bar inside Catapult Creative House, serves Kaldi’s coffee, along with baked goods, smoothies and other specialty creations like frappuccinos and blended coffees.