PEOPLE

Karl WILCOCK

Coffee shop owner

#3 Life goes on

On October 8th 2013 coffee shop Roaster Coaster officially opened its doors.
I must say that I am honoured now to call that group of volunteers my friends.

Roaster Coaster is a coffee shop and roasting house. Meaning that we roast all our own coffee on site. We buy in high quality, raw (green) coffee beans that come from various locations around the world including; Ethiopia, Tanzania, and Vietnam.

The goal has always been to provide the local people of Higashikawa and the surrounding areas with a great product at a reasonable price. I believe we do that.
You can choose from a good variety of blends and roasts and either sit in and soak up the atmosphere at Roaster Coaster or buy the beans and take them home for a delicious brew anytime you want.
All our coffees are made that bit more special when they are brewed using the natural spring water that bubbles up to every property in Higashikawa.

One of our top selling coffees is a dark but mellow roasted brew by the name of 'Higashikawa Blend' it is only on sale at the Michinoeki(Road station) just up the road from Roaster Coaster.
As well as having regular customers who ask us to send our coffee to them in both Hokkaido and Honshu, in the past 12 months the wholesale side of the business has really taken off and we now supply coffee to other cafes/coffee shops and hotels in and around Hokkaido. The plan now is to continue the expansion of coffee sales outside of the immediate area and to hopefully build up a strong and successful brand.

I'm often asked, 'isn't it difficult running a business in Japan?'
The answer is, it's not easy running a business anywhere but it's something I've grown up with and something that feels natural to me.

My childhood was spent in shops and businesses.
My grandfather was a successful business man in the textiles industry and my summer holidays were often spent hanging around the office or the warehouse. My Mum ran a small chain of flower shops, my father a fruit and vegetable shop and my brother runs a large horticultural nursery. I was serving behind the counter of most of these places from a very young age. I can remember counting out money on the living room floor at home and putting it into bags ready to take to the bank or reading out the figures on the receipts for my Mum when she was doing the accounts.

Almost all my weekends from the age of about 10 or 11 to the time I went to Australia were spent learning about the day to day running of shops. I've seen what works and what doesn't and I try to put as much of that knowledge into what I'm doing as possible. When you've done as much as you can to plan and prepare, after that it's 'fingers crossed'!

ROASTER COASTER

  • 1-1-13 Nishi Machi, Higashikawa, Kamikawa-gun, Hokkaido
  • 0166-73-7665
  • Tue. - Sat. 11:30 am - 6:00 pm Sun. 11:30 am - 4:30 pm