OUR STORY

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CELEBRATING 10 YEARS

With a passion for great coffee, Andy and Jessie Wilkin founded Pilot Coffee Roasters under the name Te Aro Coffee Roasters in 2009. Located in Toronto’s Leslieville neighbourhood, the name was inspired from Andy’s upbringing in Te Aro - an area of downtown Wellington, New Zealand - and was built to establish our core values of sourcing ethical, Direct Trade coffee and building transparency in the process from farm to cup. Te Aro operated as a specialty cafe and micro roastery, supplying coffee, equipment, training, technical support and consulting services for new cafe owners across the city.

Two years later, a second cafe was opened on the Ossington strip in Toronto’s west end, and by 2013 we rebranded to Pilot Coffee Roasters, moving roastery operations to our current headquarters at 50 Wagstaff Drive. Our dedication to quality, education and state-of-the-art facilities propelled us to earn 2014 Micro Roaster of the Year by Roast Magazine. With the international acclaim from the award and a growing presence in Toronto’s specialty coffee scene came new and exciting opportunities. More cafes were opened downtown, new Direct Trade partnerships were developed and a cold brew production department was introduced, quickly establishing Pilot Cold Brew™ as a leader in the category. 

Today Pilot Coffee Roasters is a full-service roastery, cold brewery, training provider and cafe operator with seven locations across Toronto and wholesale accounts from coast to coast. Our passion for great coffee and commitment to quality remains at the heart of everything we do. 

OUR MISSION

We want to roast great coffee, and work with great people to do it.

But it is more than just 'great coffee'… every bag of Pilot Coffee Roasters beans represents a global community of dedicated professionals, specialized skill and a lot of hard work. What drives us is our passion. What guides us is our commitment to quality, innovation and exceptional service.  

DIRECT TRADE

The perfect roast is only possible if it begins with the perfect green bean.

The first step to realizing our mission is finding the most amazing green beans this world has to offer. Beans that have the depth of flavour that tells the story of where they come from. We track down and source exceptional coffee by working closely with our trusted partners on the ground and travelling to the coffee’s origin. The truth is, we would be nowhere without the skilled effort of the farmers and the workers producing high quality specialty coffees to share through the roastery. To honour this indispensable effort, we are always expanding our Direct Trade model. This involves regular trips to origin, building strong relationships with producers, touring their farms, and purchasing coffees directly from the growers as often as possible. Through Direct Trade, we can be sure that the premium prices we pay go straight into the hands of our producer partners.

OUR WORKPLACE CULTURE

Great people come from all walks of life with unique identities and lived experiences.

Pilot Coffee Roasters is committed to creating a safe and welcoming environment where all are free to live their truth. This approach to diversity and inclusion applies to every customer, colleague, business partner and every interaction throughout our business. It is our responsibility to create spaces for all to enjoy, and we encourage you to join us in this commitment.