Northern Cobbler was established back in 2010 by Feroza & Steffan, originally as a high-quality and contemporary footwear label. The two friends then travelled the world, from Europe, to India, to the America’s, visiting manufacturers, exhibiting at international trade fairs and exploring what the world had to offer. During this period, they discovered a taste for the vast and vibrant world of speciality coffee.
“What initially started out as a hobby, soon became a bit of an obsession.”
Feroza & Steffan opened their first retail store in 2015 in the fashionable Clarendon Park area of Leicester, becoming a focal point of the city ever since. There are now a total of three Northern Cobbler stores with more in the pipeline.
Contrary to some beliefs, Northern Cobbler is a truly independent business. There are no investors and their growth has been organic, calculated and healthy. Feroza and Steffan don’t always shout about it, but they are most certainly proud to be one of the independents that form part of the business and community landscape in Leicester.
Located in Billesdon in rural Leicestershire, a beautiful converted brick barn houses both Northern Cobbler’s roastery and one of their coffee lifestyle stores. Stores such as this one showcase their own in-house blend and single origin speciality coffees, alongside noteworthy food and a selection of ethical lifestyle goods.
“Paying tribute to all things natural, our stores are designed to immerse you into our world with a simple aesthetic that feels warm and honest.”
“By roasting in-house, we are able to control the quality and freshness of the coffee in-store.”
The aim, for Northern Cobbler, is to roast each coffee in a way that enhances its unique characteristics and flavours. Along side their impressive collection of single origin coffees, it is in fact their own in-house blend that is currently their bestseller; Burbot.
At their Billesdon store, a wonderful glass partition wall allows customers to enjoy a coffee of their liking whilst watching the coffee beans being roasted right in front of them. And to take it a step further, next year Feroza & Steffan will be offering roasting and cupping (coffee tasting) sessions.
“During our travels, we saw the effects of non-ethical sourcing, and therefore we now feel the necessity to do our bit and source sustainably to help preserve our environment.”
In the words of Feroza & Steffan, speciality coffee should be defined by not only how good it tastes, but also by its ethical stance. At Northern Cobbler, they take pride in using sustainably sourced, small batch green beans from ethical farms. They also take specific measures to make sure that they operate sustainably on every level of the business. This involves using biodegradable and recyclable packaging, and also repurposing the chaff produced during the coffee roasting process as compost via the farmer that uses the land where their store is located in Billesdon. These are decisions are made not for profit, but to ensure they have as little environmental impact as possible and also to help change the industry for the better.
Having opened 2 stores over the past two years (in Oakham and Billesdon), it has meant that the business is a continuous work in progress, especially with the attention required to manage and improve their Queens Road store.
“Our intention is, and always has been, to progress the Northern Cobbler brand and for as many people as possible to enjoy our speciality coffee.”