Valor Coffee, located in Alpharetta, is the vision of three friends (Riley Westbrook, Ross Walters, and Ethan Rivers) who decided to open up a coffee “pop-up” shop that caters to small businesses, weddings, parties, or any other event that desires great coffee. As they explain on their Kickstarter page (successfully funded!) and accompanying video, they created Valor Coffee to bring the community around good coffee.
I visited Valor Coffee in late 2018 and had a nice conversation with Ross and Ethan. They were very welcoming and explained the concept behind their pop-up coffee stand (technically, one could also call it a cart, because it is on wheels) and their future plans. Right now, the business is located inside the Thrive Coworking space in Alpharetta; however, the founders of Valor plan to move to a more permanent brick-and-mortar location somewhere in Alpharetta later this year. (UPDATE: a couple of days after publishing this post, Valor Coffee announced that they have secured a lease in front of the building in which they currently reside at 44 Milton Street with an opening sometime in the summer of 2019).
As I chatted with Ross and Ethan, I was struck about their deliberate message and their core set of values. For instance, one of the values is “Listen and Respond,” where the Valor employees will cater the coffee to a customer’s preferences:
This value is all about adjusting to fit what a customer wants. Customer needs are golden opportunities that, when creatively addressed, build trust and brand loyalty. By intentionally listening, we pursue opportunities to ‘wow’ our people in personal, unique, and unexpected ways.
Scroll through the rest of this post to read about other values espoused by Valor Coffee.
Photos from my visit are below.
An interesting perspective from Valor Coffee is their emphasis on transparency:
We are an open book. In order to build and maintain healthy relationships with our associates and customers, we maintain a high level of communication about our business. Internally, we share our financials with our associates, we’re honest about areas that need improvement, and we show our weaknesses. Transparency breeds trust. We are open about the quality and production of our ingredients, we share our ideas and methods with anyone (no trade secrets), and we personally open up to customers in order to build relationships.
The coffee crafted at Valor is excellent. Which brings us to another core value at Valor: Excellence & Empathy:
This core value is about crafting products at the highest level while prioritizing approachability and empathetic service. This is especially relevant in specialty coffee. We are passionate and knowledgeable about our product, but not in a snobbish, unapproachable way. People are the priority, whether they know about specialty coffee or not!
Excellent and down-to-earth.
Speaking of Excellence & Empathy: if you are a podcast fan, you can learn a lot more about Valor Coffee on the Cat & Cloud Coffee Podcast (here’s the link to the podcast on Apple Podcasts); the subtitle of the episode is “Excellence and Empathy,” which is one of the core values that Valor Coffee espouses.
Another core value at Valor Coffee is “Put on a Show,” as explained here:
This core value revolves around the “stage” (any place where we are interacting with a customer). When we step on stage, we recognize that we are performing a very intentional and curated customer service experience. Just as a band plays in sync with each other, we work as a team to put on a show that blesses everyone we come in contact with. When we are on stage, we are “always on”— proactive, professional, and focused.
By the way, Valor Coffee has a great Instagram account. Here’s one of my favorite photos:
If you’re in Alpharetta, pay a visit to Valor Coffee for some delicious brews. And if you’re a small business, consider hiring these guys to cater at your event.
Watch this page for updates as Valor Coffee expands and moves to a more permanent brick-and-mortar location later this year!
UPDATE: a couple of days after publishing this post, Valor Coffee announced that they have secured a lease in front of the building in which they currently reside at 44 Milton Street to open up a full cafe (complete with food offerings). The opening is set for summer 2019.