Okay, so here’s the deal. Todd Carmichael–the man behind La Colombe, the man responsible for the caffeination of a significant percentage of Philadelphians on any given day–is kind of a weirdo. But he’s also kind of a genius weirdo because, among other things, he’s the guy who came up with the idea for putting La Colombe draft lattes in cans. (He also walked, alone, 700 miles across Antarctica to the South Pole, but that’s a whole other story.)
We now have two large pieces of news regarding both said cans and Carmichael’s inherent oddity (or, one might say, excellent marketing instincts). First, La Colombe canned draft lattes are about to be released nationwide in a bunch of big-name stores (something that’s never been done before).
And second, Todd Carmichael is launching a draft latte into space. Which has (as far as I know) also never been done before.
We have a video. You should really check it out.
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What happens when La Colombe CEO and host of the Travel Channel series Dangerous Grounds, Todd Carmichael, two scientists from the Monell Chemical Senses Center, and the Geographical Society of Philadelphia get together for a night? A completely elevated coffee tasting experience. And Science.
This Thursday, March 31st at La Colombe’s flagship location at 1335 Frankford Avenue is Dark and Stormy, a special event that explains why 100 million Americans drink at least one cup of coffee a day by looking at the science behind the drink, including the sensory experiences we have with our daily cup(s) of joe.
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La Colombe Draft Latte in a can will be available March 1 | Photo by Alexander Mansour
This morning, Todd Carmichael stood in front of the assembled media at his Fishtown cafe to show off La Colombe Draft Latte in cans. But as is often the case when Carmichael gets talking, there was a lot more shared.
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Di Bruno Bros. Emilio Mignucci with a cup of La Colombe Draft Latte.
Back in June, Todd Carmichael told Philadelphia magazine that he planned to revolutionize the world with his Starbucks killing canned draft latte. A bold statement for the founder of Philadelphia’s La Colombe but that’s the kind of guy he is.
Shortly after that statement, he rolled out draft latte at all his cafes in Philadelphia, New York, Chicago and Washington D.C. This week, Di Bruno Bros. Rittenhouse Square location at 18th and Chestnut Streets became the first external location to offer La Colombe Draft Latte on tap.
Draft Latte for the uninitiated is a frothy iced latte served from a tap system. The process allows La Colombe to pressurize the milk and give it a silky textured mouthfeel like a traditional latte.
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See La Colombe CEO Todd Carmichael at ThinkFest 2015.
Todd Carmichael isn’t your typical CEO. White shirt, tie and stiff attitude? Not a chance. Try T-shirt, jeans and a baseball cap instead. Oh and he was the first man to make a solo trek across Antartica to the South Pole. And he has a reality show where he travels the world. Did I mention he worked for a Saudi prince and adopted four children from Ethiopia?
But the CEO of the fast-growing La Colombe Torrefaction has had plenty of adventures in the business world as well. Since the mid-1990s, Carmichael’s company has grown from one cafe in Rittenhouse Square to a coffee empire. The company is now on a quest to build 100 cafes across the country and its coffee beans are a staple on supermarket shelves across the country. Read more »
Todd Carmichael, Hamdi Ulukaya and J.P. Iberti | Photo via La Colombe
The founder of Chobani Greek Yogurt, Hamdi Ulukaya, has become the sole investor in Philadelphia’s La Colombe. Ulukaya bought out Goode Partners, a private equity firm that invested $28.5 million in La Colombe last year.
In a post to La Colombe’s blog, La Colombe co-founder Todd Carmichael said, “Hamdi and I share the same views and values about what makes a product and a brand great – and the impact that a company that makes great products can have on the world.”
Carmichael calls Ulukaya “one of the greatest craft entrepreneurs of our time.” Chobani has passed $1 billion in revenues.
For more on the deal, check out Biz Philly.
Chobani Founder Invests Big in La Colombe [Biz Philly]
A Note from Todd: La Colombe’s Next Chapter [La Colombe ]
La Colombe CEO Todd Carmichael frequently seeks out business executives that he respects, so he can pick their brains and learn how they operate. One of them is Hamdi Ulukaya, founder of the wildly popular greek yogurt company Chobani.
Soon, the two became fast friends — and La Colombe now makes a coffee brand just for Chobani (and its New York cafe) and the two traveled to Turkey for an episode of Dangerous Grounds, Carmichael’s Travel Channel TV show about hunting for the world’s best coffee beans. Read more »
Todd Carmichael, CEO of La Colombe shows off his latest creation: Draft latte in a can. (Photo by Jared Shelly)
“If you stopped by La Colombe‘s flagship location in Fishtown this weekend, you were likely offered a sample of its latest creation: The draft latte — a coffee and milk combo poured from a keg that has a semi-sweet taste and a slight milkshake-like texture,” reports BizPhilly on their interview with La Colombe CEO Todd Carmichael.
Unbeknown to me, I was one of those people this weekend. When I walked into La Colombe’s flagship in Fishtown, I had no idea about Carmichael’s plans to package this drink and sell it nationwide. As I walked through the door someone asked if I’d like to sample the draft latte, and I looked at the long line ahead of me and thought, “Obviously.”
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La Colombe CEO Todd Carmichael shows off his latest creation: Draft latte in a can. (Photo by Jared Shelly)
If you stopped by La Colombe‘s flagship location in Fishtown this weekend, you were likely offered a sample of its latest creation: The draft latte — a coffee and milk combo poured from a keg that has a semi-sweet taste and a slight milkshake-like texture. The best part is that there’s no ice diluting the drink and screwing up the taste.
But that bit of frothy good news is just the beginning. The company plans to start producing cans of the draft latte to sell in stores across the country. CEO Todd Carmichael thinks it’s a product that can seriously disrupt a market dominated by Starbucks and its bottled Frappuccino. Read more »
Todd Carmichael–local guy, cofounder of La Colombe and star of the Travel Channel show Dangerous Grounds–is featured in Details magazine’s April issue, naming some food and drink hotspots around Philadelphia.
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