Sponsor Feature: Ellwood Thompson's Local Market
Ellwood Thompson Local Market has been serving the Richmond community as a hub for local, wholesome food since 1989. Their commitment to quality, sustainability, and local partnerships has established them as a trusted community resource over the years, and they have played an integral role in the successful launch and growth of countless local brands and producers.
Blanchard’s Coffee Roasting Co. began its partnership with Ellwood Thompson Local Market in 2008, when they took a chance on a young coffee roasting company and placed a few bags of our coffee on the shelf. Over the next decade or more, we continued to grow with Ellwood Thompson’s, expanding our retail offerings as well as supplying the cafe with coffee for brewing and espresso. We’ve launched exciting new coffees with Ellwoods, connected customers to coffee farmers, and most recently, launched The Small Coffee Project - a Farm-To-Cup driven collaboration featuring coffees from one of our closest farm partners and the Ellwood Thompson’s team designed to better tell the story of how coffee gets into our morning cup, shortening that distance and feedback loop.
When we learned we would be hosting Coffee Championships Prelims this year, we knew we would need the help of a number of local and national sponsors to make the event the best it could be. One crucial item needed for the success of the event is food for the judges and staff that ultimately make the event run smoothly. We wanted to provide food for these staffers that spoke to our own values - not just stacks of lukewarm take out pizza. We wanted to provide fresh, delicious, healthful food that could be enjoyed by all those participating equally. With that in mind, Ellwood Thompson was a natural fit. We approached the Ellwoods team to see if they were interested in being a part of the event, and they stepped up far beyond our hopes and expectations. Out of the gates, the Ellwoods team was excited about the opportunity to promote healthy, local food to a regional audience, and after a short brainstorming session, we decided on a fully vegan menu of fresh, healthful, wholesome meals and snacks for the staff, so all could enjoy and be nourished without worrying about dietary restrictions.
We couldn’t ask for a better food partner for this event, but beyond that, we couldn’t ask for a better partner in general. Since 2008, Ellwood Thompson Local Market and its staff has supported Blanchard’s Coffee Roasting Co. along with the broader Richmond, Virginia coffee community as a whole. Strong local partnerships like this allow companies like ours to grow and thrive within our community, while also preparing us to grow beyond our home town. We couldn’t be more proud of our retail presence at Ellwood Thompson’s, both in bags of coffee beans, and by the cup in The Beet Cafe. We’re excited to work with the Ellwoods team to make a memorable food experience for our staff and guests at Coffee Championships Prelims, and we’re excited for many more years of partnership with this great local brand.