Cambro Featured Business of the Week

Cambro’s Business of the Week: Red Whale Coffee

red whale coffee on tap

Everyone can agree that 2020 has been a whale of year, but Red Whale Coffee has stayed afloat despite all of its challenges. Headquartered in San Rafael, Calif., Red Whale Coffee is preparing to open their newest location, a state-of-the-art coffee bar, very soon. After 17 years in business, Red Whale Coffee has amassed a loyal following of “Podsters” thanks to their high quality and consistent coffees. Master Roaster and CEO, Sean Boyd, explains what inspired him to create Red Whale Coffee and what he loves about the coffee business:

What inspired you to get into foodservice?

“Being slightly crazy? No, seriously, I started out in foodservice hospitality back when I was about 14. I’ve done pretty much all aspects of foodservice and hospitality. Currently at Red Whale Coffee we are setting trends as it relates on how we design, build and service our community. Stay outside the “box.” I have been influenced by my mom and dad and my grandparents for sure, and people like Julia Child, Jacques Pépin, Anthony Bourdain, Alice Waters, Martin Yan, Steve Jobs, Nolan Bushnell and Sammy Hagar—just to name a few!”

What do you love about your business?

“The coffee for sure! The community around coffee. Coffee geeks and geeking out about coffee. I’m most proud of Red Whale Coffee’s progress, even as slow and methodical as it has been, and the reputation that we have founded Red Whale Coffee on: “Quality and delivering an exceptional experience.”

What’s the most interesting thing to happen to your business?

“There literally have been so many cool things that have happened over the last 17 years with Red Whale Coffee. One in particular is working with Sammy Hagar and his family with our community. Plus, opening up a new Red Whale Coffee Bar in these crazy and uncertain times!”

red whale coffee bar

What is the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome?

“2020 has been massive. Covid, fires, economy, politics, societal stresses, keeping our Red Whale Crew employed and opening a new state of the art coffee bar during these times…all brutal.”

What Cambro products help make your business work?

“The 5-gallon Camtainers are a staple in our business. We use the red ones for primarily transporting coffee to different locations almost daily to our first responders, evacuation shelters, farmer’s markets and to other various locations. We also use the black ones for handwashing stations on various remote locations. Life savers indeed!!”

Links for Red Whale Coffee

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