After well over a year since our last local spotlight, we were beyond excited to get back on the road to showcase more of the amazing local vendors we partner with. Without hesitation, we hopped in the car and headed up to Bridgewater to visit Mike Shea at his coffee shop and roasting facility. Mike Shea’s coffee has been a customer-favorite at all three of our locations since day one, so we couldn’t think of a better fit to kick things off again.
Upon arrival, it was like seeing old friends, as Mike and his dad, John, have been regulars at many of our in-store sampling events over the years. Our initial conversation centered around the various roasts that Mike Shea’s Coffee produces and the painstaking attention to detail that goes into every step. Responsible sourcing of the finest beans possible is the name of the game for Mike. He cheerfully recalled stories of dealing directly (and even visiting) some of the farms that produce the beans for his micro lot coffees. His passion for coffee was immediately inspiring.
We then ventured into the roasting area. Mike talked about the trials and tribulations of running a growing company. He showed us his two original roasting units. These had to be operated manually and only allowed them to roast very small batches at a time. As production continued to increase, it became clear that they needed to upgrade to something larger.
With a smile on his face, Mike took us over to this absolutely massive contraption—the new roaster. After numerous setbacks and installation hiccups, they are finally up-and-running with a huge roaster that allows them to produce more coffee with greater consistency than ever before. With a few touch-screen moves, the machine began to whir and a glow. It was amazing to see.
Our next stop was to check out the amazing beans that Mike imports from across the globe. Brazil, Hawaii, Rwanda, you name it… Mike is always on the lookout for the best. When he opened the bag of un-roasted coffee from Brazil, the aroma was absolutely divine.
He spoke about the quality that he looks for in every bean he brings in. Never settling for anything less than outstanding, consistent coffee.
Mike Shea’s Coffee is a hands-on operation in every sense of the word. From sourcing the raw materials, to roasting, to packaging. Labels were being hand-applied to bags by members of Mike’s team as we were walking by.
For the final stop on our trip, we made our way back out to the coffee shop. Mike opened a bag of one of his expertly-roasted creations. “Smell it”, he said. Our noses were immediately met with the most wonderful aroma of perfectly roasted coffee beans. A quick pass through the grinder and Mike was ready to brew. As he began the pour-over brewing process, he spoke about his technique for crafting a perfectly nuanced cup of coffee. We cannot describe how amazing this coffee was. The culmination of years of passion and experience.
We love getting to tell you the stories of great local companies like Mike Shea’s Coffee. The passion behind the products they produce is inspiring and it’s why we love having their coffee on our shelves. Pick up a bag of Mike Shea’s coffee on your next visit and you’ll get to experience it first hand.
Until next time!
-Matt @ Lees/Clements’