A blast of hot air conveys through an open doorway bringing along aromas of earthy warmth and anticipation. Burlap bags full of coffee beans in their green state lay stacked on pallets, almost waiting their turn, almost eager. Roasted beans make a skittering sound as they pour into bags to be distributed all over this city. There’s laughter, too, from the busy bodies of Hold Fast Coffee, a Colorado Springs Coffee roaster; they laugh as they work, big smiles and a room full of joy. “Serving others brings us joy” one of them says, and they mean it.
The ambition to start a coffee roastery from scratch in six weeks’ time is intimidating. Hold Fast is all that ambition minus any of that conceit, the aspiration to dream mixed perfectly with the tenacity to realize that dream. These contradictions find their meeting place in one of the core values of the roastery: they are approachable.
Sunlight waltzes into the multi-roomed roastery, somehow finding its way into every corner, adorning the whole space, as warm as the personalities of the team at work. The rooms are alive with a kind of creative chaos: here is the feeling of an environment that runs not on rigidity but on deeply committed relationships, both among the team and with their clients. Here and there are elements of the craft, lovingly left where they were last used, but ready still. In large format in bold black and white are icons of the whole coffee story: from plant to portafilter to this place in and for which Hold Fast engages their craft.
The coffee, too, is approachable. “Our customer is my dad” says Grace Harrison, owner and dreamer, to describe the Hold Fast Coffee ethos. The heartbeat of the roastery is to make great coffee for real people to drink—at first pass almost too simple, but it is everything coffee is about, distilled to elemental forms. “Drink Great Coffee” is emblazoned on the bottom of every Hold Fast bag, at once a protest against over-complicating things and an invitation to this most human of moments—drinking great coffee.
One of those elemental forms drives everything for Hold Fast—“Its the people” says Vinnie Snyder, general manager. Hold Fast Coffee is open by appointment only, but when your appointment comes, their whole world circles around you. The bustle of the operations in the roastery, the constant smiles and happiness, the creative energy zooming through the space: its all for the people that Hold Fast gets to serve. “Serving others brings us joy” they say, and they mean it.