Vigilante Coffee Company was started by Christopher Vigilante on his back porch in Trinidad, Washington D.C. in the Atlas District in January of 2012.
However, Chris's passion for coffee really began a few years earlier, while living and working in the Hawaiian Islands. Hawaii is the only coffee-producing state and has, in turn, produced some of the world’s finest coffee professionals. While in Hawaii, Chris worked directly with these professionals and developed direct relationships with farms on Maui, Oahu, Kauai, and the Big Island. While working with local Hawaiian producers, Chris went on to help establish the award winning farm of Manoa Valley (best in Oahu, 2010). In 2011, Chris was given the opportunity to present the Manoa Valley coffee as a gift to the President of the United States.
Washington D.C. and the H Street Corridor
A few years after returning to the mainland, while working in a few cafes and roasting on the side, Chris decided that DC was the perfect place to start his own coffee roasting company - Vigilante Coffee Co. With the help of friends and family, Chris began forming a team of other passionate coffee-loving individuals to help lead Vigilante Coffee Co. on a path to become DC's premier specialty micro-roaster, specializing in direct-source coffee.
While Hawaiian coffees are still a specialty for Vigilante Coffee Co., the company has gradually grown from it's roots and now offers high-quality, unique coffees from each of the major coffee-growing regions around the world. The company took its first non-Hawaiian "sourcing" trip in April of 2012, traveling on a mission to
Medellin, Colombia. The mission was to source coffee directly from the “Taza de Excellencia” or “Cup of Excellence” farms. After spending ten days traveling to farms and meeting with producers, the team was amazed by the sights, smells, and tastes of Colombian coffee. Upon their return, they began purchasing directly from two different farms. These coffees, San Sebastian and Las Mingas, are still available at the company's Roastery and Vigilante Coffee Co.'s retailers throughout Washington DC.
These days, the Vigilante team is hard at work roasting, serving their wholesale customers, and operating a roastery and cafe in Hyattsville, MD. They are also preparing for the Grand Opening of Maketto, which opens on H Street NE this spring. Maketto is a unique project which will feature offerings from four of DC's finest companies and chefs: Erik Bruner Yang, Will Sharp's Durkl, Frenchies DC Artisan Bakery, and Vigilante Coffee Co.
Vigilante Coffee Co. is proud to educate, prepare and serve quality coffee and is looking forward to growing and impacting the specialty coffee industry. Public coffee cuppings, brewing classes, and educational series are all offered at the Roastery and are aimed at strengthening and increasing the understanding of specialty coffee, the hard work that goes into each bean before we even see it, and all of the wonderful ways to enjoy this unique product.