Asbury students brewing up new business

Published 5:14 pm Wednesday, February 1, 2017

A class project for three Asbury students has brewed into a full-blown business.

Though Hunter Hebenstreit, Austin Blevins and Timothy Bradshaw have different backgrounds, they share one passion — coffee.

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The soon to be coffee shop — The Refinery Coffee Roasters — began as an assignment in a small business management class at Asbury.

Hebenstreit moved to Kentucky from Georgia three years ago to study Adventure Leadership at the college in Wilmore.

“We really like the process of coffee,” Hebenstreit said. “We want to build direct relationships with coffee farmers, and start a local coffee roasting company that focuses on telling their stories.”

By sourcing coffee directly from farmers the refinery would be able to cut out the middle-men and focus on connecting people, he said.

“We also want to be able to teach customers more about the process of coffee,” Hebenstreit said.

The business would paint a picture for customers of the journey from coffee bean to cup.

As their website says, behind every cup of coffee is a story.

A short bio about the farmers who grew the coffee will be found on each bag sold. A more in-depth story will be available on The Refinery Coffee Roasters website.

Hebenstreit said their company will be different and closer to home compared to others coffee shops.

“We are going to source from small family-owned coffee farms and roast in small batches,” Hebenstreit said. “Starbucks roasts in large batches and this compromises the taste.”

Currently, the coffee shop is in the Kickstarter funding stage, and the three students have raised $5,000 of their $12,000 needed to start the business.

The last day to donate to The Refinery’s Kickstarter will be Feb. 11.

The three students said they hope to be open for business and offering coffee from farm to cup by April of this year. To visit the Kickstarter page go to