Back to list

Growing Businesses Join Forces to Provide Unique Shopping Experience

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

What started out as a passion-fueled kitchen experiment for friends and family grew into Red Lantern Coffee Co., a small batch artisanal coffee roaster located in Kingsville, Ont.

Red Lantern Coffee Co. provides a unique experience roasting the fresh beans on site, while providing brewed coffee by the cup and other retail accessories for purchase. 

Owner Craig Marentette always knew he was going to be an entrepreneur one day. “I had been working for an environmental consulting firm but had always hoped and planned to get into the food industry … I started to get into coffee and the idea of roasting my own,” stated Marentette, adding, “I think I always knew I was going to start a business of some sort, I just didn’t know what it would be until the coffee roasting idea developed.”

Red Lantern Coffee Co. started as just a wholesale coffee roaster with retail pop-ups at local markets and festivals. In March 2019, Red Lantern expanded into a permanent space, allowing for coffee roasting and a retail shop. “We now have the ability to produce and retail our coffee in the same location and better connect with our customers,” said Marentette.

As with most small businesses, financing was an obstacle to overcome. “Coffee roasters are not the cheapest things and most commercial coffee equipment has a fairly steep price tag” stated Marentette, who was also very surprised by how many different skills are required to run one business. “You have to produce the product, sell it, clean, keep the finances and a seemingly endless list of other tasks that need to be completed to keep the business running.”

Red Lantern Coffee Co. is co-located with the Urban Art Market, an upscale boutique where local artists and artisans can display and sell their products to the community. The store is made up of over 20 artists from Essex County and carries an array of specialty hand crafted goods including pottery, specialty teas, women's accessories, pet treats, baby gifts and more.

Owner Anissa Noakes stresses the importance of shopping local. “Knowing exactly where your product is being made and how it’s being made is important to people as we become more conscious about the choices we make on where we shop. Supporting small local businesses will only help our community thrive.”

The shared space is advantageous for both businesses because it allows them to offer more to each of their customers. “People can grab a coffee while they shop or shop while waiting for the coffee to be made. The businesses are very complimentary and do not take from each other but add something extra to customer visits” said Noakes.


This unique partnership began long before the opening their co-location in Kinsgville. Urban Art Market’s first location in Walkerville also sells Red Lantern coffee on-site. As Red Lantern Coffee Co. sales continued to grow Marentette began looking for a café in Kingsville and Noakes immediately saw the potential. “I had heard so many great things about Kingsville and how its growing … I liked the idea of joining a small county town with a local roaster,” stated Noakes, adding “the collaboration and joining with another business can only grow each other network and makes good business for everyone."

 

Red Lantern Coffee Co. will be a vendor at our Shop Local Show on October 24th (5-9 pm) at the Fogolar Furlan Club of Windsor. Featuring locally-made, independent products and services including food and beverages,artisans, and more!