Roasters Series #2 - Interview with Alex Cocke, Head Roaster, Java Pura
Interview by Marlen Mendoza
Photos by Rory James
The origin of many roasters start off with a single idea. An idea to produce a quality product and to share that with others. The origin of Java Pura doesn’t steer off that story, as told by Head Roaster Alex Cocke, the beginning of Java Pura Coffee Roasters.
The momentum started back in 2006 when co-owners Fielding Cocke and Richard Colt had paired up to create such company. This was just two years after Katz Coffee had begun their roasting empire along with Lola Savannah and Fontana Roasters. At the time, the specialty coffee scene hadn't grown into it what it is now. There was no blueprint, no guide, not even a reference. For most. these local roasting companies had based their inspiration off of the Seattle coffee scene.
When Alex came back from college he began roasting during his summers and then transitioning to full time after he graduated. Although the shift was abrupt, Alex had always felt natural to it. He has now been roasting for 7 years, and over the course of this time he had been learning how to roast new profiles as well as learning how to work on a newer Giesen Roaster.
Although Java Pura has been producing specialty coffee for more than a decade the business hasn't opened a store front yet. The company has dwelled on the idea of putting their name on a building and calling it a coffee shop but other plans have been brewing in the background. The majority of their coffee is found at farmers markets, Central Market's all over Texas, and local cafes.
"People who go to grocery stores are part of a different crowd." Explain’s Alex. "Maybe to some people going to craft coffee shops isn’t their scene. Java Pura as a coffee company, we provided a solution to a crowd that just wants really great cup of coffee at a local and relatable level."
Because there isn’t a shop to refer to, marketing for Java Pura has to be efficient yet creative. When we spoke to Rory, the social media photographer and content creator he had given us some insight on how exactly he does his job.
"It's hard. The coffee shop pictures would be ideal but that isn’t the case." Explains Rory. "It's then that we focus on the roasting side of Java Pura, to highlight what is important here. Trying to capture the quality and dedication that Java Pura exudes is prominent. The network that we have built, and the relationships built with the customers is something we always want to focus on."
To pull the imagery to appeal to different communities is the focus for Rory, the challenge of keeping up with new roasters and shops is something he constantly works on.
Marketing to people who wouldn’t buy specialty coffee is something that directs their entrepreneurial path. They ask themselves, what new coffee can Java Pura bring from the roasting side and put that into people's homes everyday? Although taking notes on the current coffee trends, the company has been expanding in different avenues such as supplying cold brew and cold brew kegerators to offices in downtown, as well as partnering with Saint Arnold Brewery in creating coffee porters with their espresso.
When we asked Alex what was next for Java Pura, he simply put it as "to keep doing what we are doing and to perfect at it." Java Pura is that connection to the specialty coffee scene and those who might be intimidated by it. A middle ground with coffee origins that taste exceptional to the average coffee buyer and the coffee specialist.