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Feb 4, 2022

5 min. read

How a CAA Member turned her passion for coffee into a podcast

“Life happens over coffee,” muses Genny Sacco-Bak. It’s a theme she weaves through her podcast, Coffee with Genny B. (coffeewithgennyb.ca). While the CAA Member loves to gab about a good cup of joe on the show, her conversations are really about the relationships that make up Manitoba’s rich coffee culture.

Sacco-Bak’s love affair with coffee started as a teen, drinking it black in the back booth of an A&W with a side of curly fries. She moved onto bad cafeteria cups in college, before finally finding her perfect blend at her local Starbucks. What struck her most about the shop wasn’t the actual coffee—though she did love their pour overs—but the community that came with it.

“The shop was so welcoming and exuberant; people went there to be with each other, gathering over coffee,” she says, adding she loved the camaraderie so much she got a part-time job there.

For her 60th birthday, Sacco-Bak decided to explore more of Manitoba’s coffee culture by visiting 60 coffee shops in 60 days. Aside from a stop at her favourite Starbucks and a Second Cup, she visited only locally owned operations, finding numerous little gems built from the “grounds” up. Even on Christmas Day, she slurped back her first Turkish coffee at a Lebanese restaurant.

As good as the java was, she found the people that produced and poured it even more interesting. Wanting to share their stories, she launched Coffee with Genny B early last year. On the show, Sacco-Bak has chatted with local roasters and shop owners, including Stone City Coffee Roasters, Colosimo Coffee Roasters and Harrison’s Coffee Company. She also talked about Manitoba-made products with Tim Scott, President and General Manager of CAA Manitoba.

The one message she hopes listeners take away from her conversations: How coffee drives community and connection. As she says, ‘let’s meet for coffee’ really means: “I want to spend time with you.”

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