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Member Spotlight: Kestrel Coffee Roasters

Our VSFA Member Spotlight features a member each month highlighting their business, products and experience in the industry. For this spotlight we asked Kestrel Coffee Roasters a series of questions.

Answers provided by: Charlotte Steverson, Co-Owner, Kestrel Coffee Roasters

Q. Tell us a little bit about your company’s background and what you produce.
A. Kestrel Coffee Roasters is making coffee better. We source and roast specialty coffee from all over the world and sell wholesale and retail to restaurants, cafes and groceries. We have two (soon to be three!) café locations in Burlington and South Burlington, Vermont. In addition to amazing coffee drinks, our cafes feature all of our homemade food -- from sandwiches and soups to muffins, scones, and cookies.

Q. What do you find most rewarding about owning your own business?
A. We started Kestrel with the hopes of improving people’s lives with amazing coffee and amazing service and hospitality. So, when people tell us (or share with others) what a great experience they had at one of our cafes, or how awesome our coffee is, or how we--in some way-- turned their day around, it’s just the absolute best feeling.

Q. What is your proudest accomplishment as a business owner?
A. We are really proud of (and humbled by) our relatively quick growth. We went from one café in 2018, to 2 cafés in 2019, and soon-to-be three cafes by the end of 2021. Our entire team has been working hard to make sure all locations offer the same high level of service and quality. The fact that each café “feels like Kestrel” is really something special, and we don’t take it for granted.

Q. How has COVID-19 changed your approach to business?
A. We are grateful for having been able to survive the pandemic storm. The pandemic has reminded us all to be just a little more understanding of others-- from shipping delays, to supply chain issues, to staffing challenges-- there are so many things that are out of our control. No sense in letting them slow you down! 

Q. Why did you choose to become a member of the VSFA? How have you benefited from being a VSFA member?
A. We joined VSFA nearly right after we started because we wanted to be a part of the incredible specialty food community in Vermont. There are endless opportunities for collaborations and cross-marketing, not to mention potential introductions to wholesalers and retailers. It’s been an incredibly supportive and helpful group. We especially love asking questions (and reading answers) via the listserv-- super helpful!

Q. What do you most enjoy doing in your spare time? Do you have a hobby/favorite pastime?
A. We love hiking and looking for cool mushrooms! We are very lucky to have so many great hiking options nearby -- we often take tea (yes, tea, not coffee!) with us to brew mid-hike.

Q. Any additional information or news you would like to share?
A. Kestrel Coffee Roasters is excited to announce that they will be opening a third location at 77 Pine Street in Burlington this December!

Learn more about Kestrel Coffee Roasters' by visiting their website: kestrelcoffess.com