Reviewed by 16 people
Rascals started with four friends back in 2011, after they had met and worked together in a café. After working for others for so long, the group wanted to try it for themselves.
Now, Rascals is continually learning new ways to brew coffee. Their goal isn’t to just emulate everyone else, but work with customers – both wholesale and retail – to find the best solution for them.
There’s a lot of noise in the coffee industry.
How can you possibly rise above it?
For Four Rascals, the answer seems to be – don’t. Embrace the fact that the industry is in overload, then just try to service your customers as best as possible.
“We don’t want to just emulate the other roasters out there, but rather, we aim to find our own approach that benefits not just ourselves but all our customers whether wholesale or retail.”
“Sounds basic, but we find most are taken a by surprise, asking what’s the catch? We work with the customer to find the best solution for them and their tastes and situation,” says Richard Askin, one of the roasters at Four Rascals.
Four Rascals started when four friends working in the industry felt they could go on their own. With experience in every aspect of brewing – from engineering to service - they started making coffee, sourced from quality importers and wholesalers. With such a wide range of beans available in Melbourne, that wasn’t a challenge!
Four Rascals doesn’t take a one-size-fits-all approach to making coffee. They fully admit they’re always learning, and when it comes to beans? It all depends on the desired outcome.
“We know a bit when it comes to coffee, but we’re constantly learning. I’m excited about what’s coming next, about the new coffee variety for us to roast, about the latest espresso machine to be released.”
So what does that mean for their coffee? Well, it all depends on what you’re looking for.
“For blends we look for overall consistency regardless of season. For singles we want to do something a bit different from what seems to be trending with other roasters.”
“A cafe needs a consistent house blend - customers come back time and time when they can rely on a great cup every time. With all the variables that can occur on the barista level, we want our coffee to not be one of them.”
Something that sets Four Rascals apart – they use a fluid air bed roaster. Clean hot air heats the beans, then airs out, continuously. The idea is that coffee is heated with no smoke build, no charring – so it’s more aromatic and sweet. So what’s next for Four Rascals?
They won’t tell us!
“Shhhh - secrets! Currently we’re predominantly a wholesaler with only a small amount of retail trade. We hope to open a retail outlet later in the year to give us the ability to connect directly with the coffee drinker.”
Exciting. With Melbourne’s high coffee standards, it’s easy to feel as though you’re left out or running behind. Four Rascals is a reminder that you can do things your own way – and succeed. “With so many great roasters and cafes in Melbourne, it’s exciting to be a part of this and to be adding to the Melbourne coffee experience.”
A seasonal blend featuring brilliant coffee from Rwanda