Our final stop of The Rider House Road Trip tour we met up with Josh from The Coffee Ride. We knew after meeting with Josh earlier in the year that a collaboration had to happen. Josh partnered with Angry Bovine to help design The Coffee Ride kits. The design was based on how you enjoy your coffee, from black, to mega creme, it doesn't matter how you like to drink your coffee. If it's good coffee, you can drink it how ever you like and the experience is what you make of it. It's an all inclusive acceptance of how you like to start your morning. Learn more about Josh and The Coffee Ride and click here to pre-order new kit day!
The Coffee Ride was founded in Boulder Colorado back in 2013 with the simple goal to make others happy by delivering the freshest coffee by bicycle.
The story really began back in 2006 with a personal struggle to find my own identity and place in life. Not satisfied with the current direction I was headed in Wisconsin, I packed up the car and moved to the mountains of Colorado where I began the long road to satisfy a deep inner desire to help improve the quality of life of others by becoming a medical doctor.
During the six year process of working three jobs at a time, attending school, and volunteering in hospitals; coffee became as much a treat as much as it was a necessity. Long hours studying for medical school entrance exams meant a constant quest for finding new cafes, which of course means trying new coffees. Along the way I developed an affinity to certain types of coffees, which were unfortunately tough to come by at the time. My curious and compulsive personality lead me to dive in and begin researching coffee and the coffee roasting process like a mad scientist, where unlike most scientific experiments, with roasting you get to consume the end result.
Simultaneously, the long quest for becoming a doctor slowly faded as the rejection from the application process became tiresome, and I began focusing on the next chapter. Confused and defeated, I turned to my old therapeutic friend the bicycle for advice. In a complete new direction, I began working in the cycling industry where the intent was to have a flexible schedule with the hope of being able to ride more. The result was finding a great group of friends and an office with unbearably bad coffee. Having been roasting coffee for a few years at home, I began perfecting the product with the help of the picky audience of my coffee-centric cycling coworkers. The best part of my day quickly turned into my 20 minute bicycle commute to the office and the 10 minutes of making a Chemex of my latest freshly roasted coffee. After a few months of seeing the increased level of self worth my co-workers experienced from the results of taking a moment to care for someone with coffee, I was hooked. While always having been nostalgic for my grandfathers career as a milk man, I decided to take the two best parts of my day, riding bikes and sharing coffee, and turn them into a business by delivering fresh roasted coffee by bicycle.
The next stage began with selling our subaru and purchasing our first commercial coffee roaster and setting up shop in our garage. While most fairytales would end at that, living happily ever after with great success… The reality is that just like life and riding bikes, business is really difficult. I barely could afford a 5LB bag of coffee to roast for the first couple of friends that purchased coffee. I printed out 5,000 door flyers, which was a massive financial stretch at the time, and went door to door offering our bicycle delivered coffee service; sadly I think only 2 people signed up. Business has been a consistent series of failures and learning from those mistakes to make improvements. Being comfortable with being uncomfortable. Considering giving up every single week, but never giving up. For me, what made all the difference was that one connection to a customer. That one person that tells you that they look forward to every delivery day when a bag of fresh roasted coffee shows up on their front doorstep. That every time they make a cup of our coffee, every sip reminds them of their favorite group ride or outdoor family adventure.
These days we have moved into our new roastery, upgraded to a larger roaster, and have a few other talented individuals helping with deliveries and to help spread the good word. We’re currently working on building a network across the nation to help build a community around great coffee and getting more people on bikes. Through sharing our inspirational story we aim to motivate others whether it’s locally bike delivered coffee here in Boulder to brewing up some of our coffee to initiate your own neighborhood coffee ride anywhere in the nation. Although things are a little different these days, the end goal is and always will be to make others happy by delivering coffee by bicycle.