It’s hard to imagine living in a major Australian city and literally having no place to go for a cup of specialty coffee. When our founder Martin Richards returned from NZ back in 2006, this was the scenario he faced. He’d been roasting for Peoples Coffee in Wellington and had developed a taste for specialty coffee. It was clear what needed to be done. Inauspiciosly (but quite romantically) we started roasting in the old footy fields at Souths Leagues Club, under the Moreton Bay figs. Our Probat L12 roasting machine arrived in May 2007 and by July it was calibrated and we started roasting for our very first customer: Jamies Espresso Bar, Fortitude Valley.

In 2008, we opened our original store in a back street of inner city West End. With strong community networks, a following amongst students and creatives, and a presence selling beans and cold press coffee down at the Davies Park Markets, our early pioneers established a Brisbane institution. One that continues to mean a lot to many locals.


Fast forward to 2020, Blackstar is now 13 years old. With 16 million brews under our belts, we’ve paid our dues as a heritage coffee brand and are still passionate about our mission, bringing specialty coffee to life. We now roast and distribute from our roastery in East Brisbane, which is a purpose-built centre for all things coffee roasting, cupping, barista training, cold brewing, events and more. We are industry leaders and early adopters in Australian Specialty Coffee, with a commitment to fair pricing for farmers, specialty grade beans, supporting young baristas and educating customers. Many of our staff have gone on to do great things in the industry. We continue to hold the original vision of our founders, progressing their commitment to producing high quality sustainably grown coffee. All that’s really changed is the technology, knowledge, business systems and resources available for that mission. As coffee specialists, we are here to assist you with access to the highest quality coffees on the planet.



Blackstar’s Vision is “to stimulate the transition to sustainability”. We want to caffeinate & support the movement towards a sustainable economy. We understand our business to be a vehicle for change.

Our goal is to create positive impact through the culture we’re creating. Within and around our day to day operations, we are moving increasingly towards sustainable business practices. We also aim to assist others in this movement, to inspire hope and to create a spark. This is the ‘stimulate’ aspect, much more than profiteering and caffeination. ‘Transition’ refers to the journey. The changes required will take steps and it’s important to recognise that just because we can’t do everything now, doesn’t mean we can’t do something now. As long as we’re on the way and moving as best we can. Lastly, “sustainability”. The much over-used and under-acted upon S-word. For us, we’re looking at the word holistically and based on the five capitals of sustainable development: personal, social, physical, environmental and financial. These five dimensions cover all aspects of the kind of sustainability we are working towards in our business and in the world around us.



“we bring our best to everything we do, recognising that excellent efforts lead to excellent results”


“We each step up and take responsibility for the situation, whatever comes our ways, not looking to others to do it”.


“We take care of everyone, even those we disagree with and we always focus on the solution not the problem”


“We work hard for the good of others, the planet and ourselves, knowing that with strong relationships nothing is impossible”



Roasting great coffee, and drinking it, gets us out of bed in the morning at Blackstar. Being passionate about all things coffee-related means we not only enjoy creating great coffee experiences, but we’re serious about our responsibility to the coffee economy. We know that the cost of coffee production is much more than monetary, with land clearing and unsustainable farming practices, such as mono-cropping, in overseas regions. That’s why we are doing what we can to create a coffee economy that enhances our communities and our planet, through the Coffee For Trees initiative. By linking our micro-choices to real-world social and environmental responses, we can make a positive difference. Each kilo of coffee we sell contributes to planting five trees, with Landcare Australia and Trees.org. Once you get your hands on a satisfying Blackstar brew, what more do you need? Peace of mind, that's what.