By Bob Coller
“Taste Our Passion!”
Yes…it’s their slogan…but it’s much more than that…it is the truth. Truth in advertising, what a concept! After meeting with the folks from Joffrey’s Coffee & Tea Company on my latest Disney trip, I have found that they truly do have a passion for coffee & tea. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Once inside we were greeted by our friend Marilyn Coffey (yes that is her name!) and taken into what most people would consider a “break” room. This “break” room was filled with every type of coffee maker imaginable & even some that were unimaginable, and it is where the employees get to give their opinions on new blends! On the walls were photos of some of the places Joffrey’s gets its coffee and the process to get it to Tampa. It is amazing that a bag of coffee doesn’t cost $600, for all of the work involved!
Marilyn introduced us to Randy Erwin, Joffrey’s Plant Manager, and our tour began. Randy (with a great deal of passion for what they do there) explained the roasting procedure and showed us one of the large roasters. They look like steam locomotives! It was at one of the roasters that we met Miguel Feliciano, Roast Master. Miguel (as well as any of their Roast Masters) is never far from this area because as the coffee is nearing the end of the roasting cycle, Joffrey’s Roast Masters must visually check the beans to make sure they are perfect! This is done several times for each individual roast! Again, it is their Passion!
As we continued the tour, it was obvious to me these people love what they do! And as I looked around, I thought about how, in a fraction of the space they now occupy, Chris DeMezzo received that phone call from Disney saying they’d like to meet with him to see if Joffrey’s & Disney would be a good fit. I’d say it’s been a fantastic fit & we, fans of Disney & of great coffee, are the beneficiaries! Taste Their Passion . . . you won’t be disappointed!