We've been fans of Pilot's coffees for a long time.
So, when the time came to choose our first partner in this area, we did not hesitate for too long.
Who is Pilot?
The roaster, founded by Andy and Jessie Wilkin and based in Toronto, has been burning beans for 12 years now. “The operations were pretty traditional then,” says Tyler Mastantuono, who joined the team after its first anniversary, before leaving to open his own café in Montreal, then returning home. “We have an artisanal burner that only roasts a few kilos of coffee at a time, we quickly had to evolve.”
The business, originally called Te Aro (a nod to the neighborhood of the same name in Wellington, New Zealand, where Andy grew up), is growing along with the specialty coffee scene. In 2014, as its market expanded, it won the Roaster of the Year Award for the best microroaster. Since then, Pilot has increased its branches in Toronto and its points of sale in Canada to become a reference.
We could have chosen from several excellent roasters to begin our adventure. But Pilot is a step ahead of many producers, both in terms of controlling the quality of its products and in its service and commitment to offering its bean suppliers a price and support that makes the coffee trade more sustainable. .
“Most of our suppliers have been with us for a very long time,” Tyler explains. It helped us a lot to have a consistent and good quality product in times of crisis linked to the pandemic. But it is also a relationship that we develop in both directions, to the extent that their knowledge of our methods and our ability to fully understand their cultivation techniques allow us to jointly adjust our ways of doing things to obtain the best final product. possible."
Also, Pilot undertakes to pay its coffee suppliers 25% more than the current direct trade price.
Our main motivation for choosing this Toronto partner: its products. His range is impressive and the consistency of his blends is absolutely astonishing.
On the one hand, the Heritage and Monument labels are famous classic blends. The first: our choice for lattes, cortados and other milky pairings. The second combines its chocolate side with a touch of acidity. The Academy is the perfect match between acidity, fruit and a caramelized side which gives it its richness.
Then, a world of discoveries opens up to you. Products of single origin with destabilizing properties (like the Ethiopian Ana Sora and its marked strawberry aroma) or comforting properties (like the Peruvian El Eucalipto and its scent of cocoa and orange), impeccable blends that lend themselves to all types of infusion (like the rich Community): Pilot never takes a wrong step.
“Specialty coffees have multiplied over the years, but so has demand,” explains Tyler. It did not threaten us, on the contrary, but we had to stick to our basic values so as not to rest on our laurels. Innovating and constantly looking for ways to improve our methods and our products is part of our entrepreneurial spirit.”
Modbar: face to face
Among the new features at Faux Mouvement, we have adopted a Modbar system. You quickly notice: most of the coffee machine hardware has disappeared under the counter or in the basement.
All that remains in view is a highly sophisticated service module into which the basket is inserted using the handle.
“I have worked with Modbar for a long time,” says Tyler, “and I love this type of installation. There, the barista faces the customer. The latter can see the entire operation, the coffee flowing, he can chat with the person operating the machine. In terms of product quality, we lose absolutely nothing. But on a human level, in the relationship you establish with the people in front of you and the possibility of talking about the product, the difference is major.”
Not to mention that, from an aesthetic point of view, even if we like big machines and their gleaming hardware, the simplicity that the Modbar allows has something refreshing and soothing in our decor.