Dream duo Mat & Chrissy are bringing fresh, aromatic coffee to your Whistler doorstep every week.
Twenty years ago, the stars aligned when Mat Peake and Chrissy Hay met in a little hippie café in Whistler. The pair took a quick 13 year jaunt around Australia and B.C before deciding to return to Whistler, where they now form two halves of Hammer Coffee Roasting. Their business ethos reflects their philosophy on life in general: to be ethical, support the community, and protect the environment.
To this end, they roast sustainably sourced beans in micro-batches, each pound roasted to order to minimize waste and ensure that each bag is as fresh possible. Influenced by their travels, the two now wear many hats in their sustainable, independent craft roasting business. Chrissy is the roastess with the mostess, whose expertise and precision brings out the best in every bean. Mat handles the business side of things, using his background in tech startups to develop Hammer - his first business with a tangible product. After years of relying on a small group of long-suffering friends for feedback on their roasting technique, their first official coffee delivery was in January 2017.
It all started in a Whirley-Pop popcorn maker over a camping stove. Mat describes how his father cut down the handle so that Chrissy could attach a cordless drill. This formed the turning mechanism to create a makeshift roaster - craft roasting in its simplest form. This story is all the more unbelievable when you try your first cup of Hammer Coffee, which seems light years away from its modest roots.
The ability to read the bean and make decisions with split second timing is acquired over years of trial and error. It takes an excellent roaster to ensure that the beans reach the peak of perfection, and no further. And we can vouch - Chrissy’s beans are darn near perfection. We were treated to a bag of their Brazil blend - full-bodied, chocolatey, holding a smooth caramel finish. These days, using their professional roaster out in Function Junction, every pound of coffee is expertly roasted to order, with love, by Chrissy.
Their ethos is community-centric, with a commitment to sustainable business practice and remaining independent. You won’t find these beautiful bags of brown on the shelves in IGA, they will arrive on your doorstep in Chrissy’s weekly delivery. They currently source from ethical farms with sustainable agricultural practices in Central and South America. Their aspirations for growth are a deepening of their roots within Whistler community groups, not global supermarket domination. Mat tells us of his future plans: "Right now, we’re moving to a larger production space in Function Junction. This will allow us to expand our product range and provide better service to our customers. We believe in sustainable business and staying independent. And we’re still as stoked as ever!"
The caffeinated couple remain happy with their small-scale approach of selling exclusively to locals. “People working hard to live and stay in Whistler deserve yummy coffee at an affordable price” says Chrissy. This commitment to supporting the Whistler community doesn’t come without sacrifice - small business ownership (especially with your partner) can become stressful. “Stress can get out of control if it goes unchecked. Luckily, we support each other when one person goes loco! And we ride our bikes... a lot”.
For Mat, this is just part of the fun. And his drive remains to support Whistler - a town which is all about the people. “
"The people that live here are amazing. They’re world changers, improving lives and positively influencing big, big issues. Roasting coffee for these people is a pure pleasure. Also, the mountain biking is okay…”
You can order Hammer Coffee direct from their website or Facebook page. Place your order before 12 noon on Friday for guaranteed delivery on Saturday. Every pound will be roasted to order and delivered 24 hours later. It doesn't get much fresher than that. A full pound bag costs $20 ($15 for locals - quote this article).