Black Coffee, Green Thinking

July 18, 2019

Balzac’s Coffee is promoting Sustainability, One Sip at a Time

From the time the first Balzac’s café opened in Stratford, Ont. in 1996, founder Diana Olsen knew she wanted to create something unique for the North American coffee scene.

After graduating with a degree in French Literature, Olsen spent a year and a half in France. Passing many pleasant afternoons immersed in the grand cafés of Paris, she found a kindred spirit in the novelist Honoré de Balzac –– a famed coffee-lover himself who declared that “the café is the people’s parliament.” Taking this sentiment to heart, she travelled to San Francisco in 1993, where she expanded her java knowledge by studying the craft of coffee-bean roasting and selection at the West Coast Specialty Coffee Training Institute.

Drawing on her experience abroad, Olsen had a clear vision of what she wanted to create with her own coffee business. “The inspiration for Balzac’s was from the cafés in Paris where ‘takeout’ and ‘fast-food’ are not the driving forces,” she explains. “We have always considered the health, the quality, the source and sustainability amongst our founding values.” Click here to continue reading.