Welcome to our newest addition: Brandon Riggs!
Brandon joins us from Stockton Graham & Co, where he has been the Roastmaster and Coffee Buyer
Brandon started his career in coffee in 1999 when he joined the team of The Roasterie in Kansas City. He was trained and worked closely with the roaster there, who had been in the industry for 35 years. This is where he acquired his skills in quality control, cupping, and buying. He began taking origin trips which had a profound impact on his perception of coffee. In 2002 he moved to Raleigh, NC to become Roastmaster and Coffee Buyer for his current position. Over his 14 years at Stockton Graham & Co., he began forging long term relationships with customers. He has made numerous origin trips with brokers to solidify relationships with farmers and importers. He created and implemented a series of training programs at the roasting facility. These programs include cupping protocol, blend and roast development, and blending science with sensory tools to evaluate and maintain quality. He has a history of melding technology with his hands on skills to produce consistent high quality results. Also during this time, he began to develop a specific quality control system to maintain consistent standards for customers’ coffee selections.
Brandon co-founded the SERC (South Eastern Roaster Consortium) in 2006, and is a member of MARRG (Mid-Atlantic Regional Roaster Group), both of which were created for regional roasters of any size to come together to hone their skills, talk about roasting, and discuss challenges industry experts face. He has been a member of the Roasters Guild and SCAA since 1999, and has volunteered both at SCAA conferences and barista competitions, the latter of which he has served as a sensory judge. During his tenure in the specialty coffee industry, he has seen many changes; from roast level preferences, choices for espresso, more education both to the general public and inside the industry, and the general passion for what great coffee is all about. His desire and purpose is to show respect to each coffee varietal, by choosing carefully how it is bought and roasted, but also show respect to his clientele. “By bringing out the best of each bean, and listening to and educating customers, we show respect to the individuals who produced the coffee at origin,” Brandon states, “and this is the most rewarding part of what I do.”
We are proud to announce his addition to our team and are excited to see what he can do with this position. We look forward to the future and hope to introduce Brandon to everyone as soon as possible.