The Story About Albert-Louis Van Houtte
The story of Albert-Louis Van Houtte is an impressive quest of an immigrant's dream and passion for quality and success. It's a story that had Albert-Louis start out in search of better opportunities in the New World. Who knew that this French immigrant would become a pioneer of gourmet coffee, as we know it today!
It was the idea of importing horses that brought French-born Albert-Louis Van Houtte to Canada in 1911. That idea proved to be unsustainable, and so he found himself following another one of his passions, food retailing. Finally, in 1919, after being in Canada for 7 years Albert-Louis Van Houtte opened his specialty food store in Montreal. Within a year of being open, his business was well regarded and respected as being a top quality foods store.
Albert-Louis Van Houtte's initial love for coffee and thirst for adventure drove him into being a coffee aficionado and specialist. He traveled to New York to buy a roaster and started roasting his own coffee at the back of his shop. His House Blend, a mix between dark and light roasted beans (the first to ever do so) became so famous, people would line up outside his store to bring some home.
The word about Albert-Louis Van Houtte's coffee started to travel far. It was hard to find quality coffee in Canada at the time. In the 30s, he opened a store in Quebec City to meet growing demand. Albert-Louis Van Houtte passed away in 1944, but his legacy, passion and blends live on. Today 3 million cups of Van Houtte are enjoyed every day and Van Houtte is a clear leader in the fields of roasting coffee.