November 30, 2012

2012 Hall of Fame: Giancarlo Giusti of Grinders Coffee

The Cafetto Coffee Roaster Hall Of Fame is awarded each year at The Golden Bean to a coffee roaster who has made a lifelong contribution to the coffee industry in Australia.

Cafetto was honoured to announce Giancarlo Giusti of Grinders Coffee as the recipient of the 2012 Coffee Roaster Hall of Fame at the Golden Bean award dinner recently.

Many iconic Australian coffee brands have their roots firmly grounded by Italian heritage, and none more so than Grinders, the lifelong passion and creation of Australian coffee legend Giancarlo Giusti.

Giancarlo’s success story started in 1960 with his arrival in Melbourne from Italy, an entrepreneurial migrant starting a new life in Australia.

Before long, Giancarlo’s burning desire to bring a more authentic taste of Europe to Australia became a reality when he, and business partner at the time Rino Benassi, opened Grinders Coffee House in Lygon Street.

It was in this humble store that little by little Giancarlo began developing his famous continental style coffee. After purchasing his famous large red grinder for just £1, Giancarlo started roasting, grinding and selling his own coffee beans from the back of his store.

He soon found a huge following among Australians, especially university students, and soon the wider community – which was dominated by tea drinkers.

By 1969, Giancarlo was supplying coffee to cafés throughout Melbourne – the coffee revolution had begun and was spreading fast.

Giancarlo was one of just a small number of specialty coffee roasters at the time, and Grinders was pivotal in cementing Carlton as the hub of Italian culture in Australia.

With the acquisition of Grinders Coffee House by Coca-Cola Amatil in 2005, a new era in the life of Grinders began. Giancarlo is today an ambassador for the brand he so proudly fathered, and in his honour, Grinders created the premium signature Giancarlo’s blend.

Giancarlo is now retired; however, his passion for coffee still grows.

In his own words: “Coffee is my life”.

From every Cafetto and every coffee lover … thank you and congratulations Giancarlo!

– Christopher Short, 


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