...and two strangers meeting on an airplane.
Graham was a full-time coffee connoisseur, working as a barista at a hip Northern California coffee shop and developing beverages for brands on the side. Immersed in the world of coffee, he started learning about the stark inequities within commodity coffee trading – even as specialty coffee grows in popularity, many farmers are struggling to stay in business.
Graham felt he could create an ethical coffee company that supported farmers through direct trade and delighted customers with uniquely satisfying flavors. He met Guillermo Moran, a Bay Area coffee roaster with a unique tie to origin, and knew he’d found the right coffee partner. (Learn more about our direct trade relationship here.) Graham had the mission and the coffee, and now he needed the product. He’d been experimenting with a carbonated root beer cold brew, but he needed help creating new flavors and bringing the product to market.
Twenty miles away, Louis was also looking to turn his love of coffee into a company. As head chef of Sonoma’s Glen Ellen Star, he spent countless hours trying to stay cool and caffeinated in a hot kitchen. His take on an espresso tonic – espresso, sparkling water, and a squeeze of lemon for balance – produced a refreshing burst of energy without the sugary weight of most cold coffee drinks, and he knew that nothing in stores replicated that experience. Taking what he’d learned about the power of high-quality real ingredients from fine dining, Louis wanted to bring his chef-crafted flavors to the world of coffee.
Fate stepped in, via an airline seating assignment that sat Graham’s partner next to Louis’s father-in law. 90 days later, VIVIC was born. Together, Graham and Louis developed the three original flavors and learned how to take their products from the kitchen to store shelves. Now, they’re excited to share these products with coffee lovers everywhere.