Belfast Telegraph

High-end coffee roasting company Ristretto toasts fifth anniversary

A Co Down coffee roasting company is celebrating its fifth anniversary.

Ristretto in Banbridge supplies high-end restaurants across Northern Ireland. The company, which is based in Banbridge Enterprise Centre, was formed by Gregg Radcliffe and Mark Anderson after they left their careers in IT.

They had started roasting coffee in their garages years earlier.

"We thought it would be great to produce amazing coffee at home in Northern Ireland for others to enjoy," Mr Radcliffe said.

Ristretto's clients include many well-known restaurants - Michael Deane's restaurants in Belfast, Balloo House near Comber and Parsons Nose in Hillsborough, Uluru in Armagh, Merlot in Enniskillen and Tedfords, also in Belfast.

The company has won gold stars for its espresso and filter coffees at the Great Taste Awards.

Its founders said a lack of quality fresh coffee available locally led them to start the business.

"The coffee we buy in is the highest grade specialist coffee and is ethically sourced," said Mr Radcliffe.

"Coffee is a fresh product, like bread or fruit and it is only at its best for a few weeks after roasting. At the time there was nothing like that on the market so we did it ourselves," he added.

Mr Anderson said there were three factors to the success of a coffee business.

"There are three pieces to the 'great coffee' jigsaw puzzle - the finest beans, the best espresso machines and an intense barista training programme. At Ristretto we place a strong emphasis on each of these."