We were honored to be finalists last year, and even more thrilled to be finalists again this year. So imagine our excitement when we received the news that we had actually won such a prestigious award! (If you can't imagine our excitement, let's just say that there was a lot of “happy dancing".) It was an exciting moment for the entire Square One team. We wasted no time booking our tickets to San Francisco to claim our award, sending Josh, our fearless leader, and Steve, our Director of Wholesale.
Here’s a quick Q&A with Josh and Steve about the highlights of their short visit to San Francisco last week
Q: What was the most memorable moment at the Good Food Awards ceremony?
Josh: Definitely watching Steve accept the award on stage. It was exciting to hear my company being called out and recognized among so many incredible coffee roasters that I know and respect.
Steve: Hearing all of the other winners speak about their products and industries made me realize that we are all in the business of making better products and experiences for people. We’re all excited about our work, and we all love what we do. It feels good to be included along with people of that caliber.
Q: What does winning a Good Food Award mean to you?
Josh: Personally, I look at winning this award as validation. It’s easy to forget that you’re doing something special when you’re a small company, but being recognized on a national stage really reminds us that we’re doing something great. I believe in our team and know that we’re doing great things, but I’m so close to the action, so I’m very biased at times. It never hurts to have outsiders (especially a panel of coffee experts who are cupping your coffee in an unbiased way) agree that your product is excellent.
Steve: I was one of the first employees at Square One, so it was a bit surreal. Originally, we didn’t have much wholesale business. As the company grew, I went from being a barista to a roaster to head of the wholesale operation. I spent years packaging our wholesale orders in the basement, believing that this very small company in Lancaster, PA was going to be a big deal someday. Fast forward a few years, and I’m standing on stage in San Francisco, accepting a national award. It meant a lot to me that Josh and Jess wanted me to accept the award. The whole experience was confirmation that our company is doing a great job. It was a nice confidence boost for us all.
Both Josh and Steve agreed that it was inspiring to be in the audience and to hear all of the other category winners (beer, spirits, cheese, chocolate, charcuterie, pickles, confections, oils, and preserves) talk passionately about their products. They both left the event with a greater perspective and realization that Square One is a part of a larger movement of artisans who have a renewed focus on products that are sustainable, healthy, tasty, and produced with a lot of care and intention.