We had the good fortune of connecting with Santiago and Fernando Castillo and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Santiago and Fernando, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
As long time coffee drinkers the both of us have always had a love hate relationship with the burst of energy from coffee followed by the crash that left us jittery and shaky. During our travels in Japan after attending some tea ceremonies we came across really high quality Matcha green tea. We found that it still had a kick of caffeine but it was smoother and lasted longer that what we were normally used to. We decided to make it our mission to find the highest quality Japanese Matcha available and bring it to the US in the hopes that it can do for others what it did for us. Thus started the company, Yodha Matcha, which now serves in over 40 coffee shops as well as direct to consumer all over the globe. It was our mission to help others discover the amazing health benefits of Matcha and how it can improve someones life both physically and emotionally.
What should our readers know about your business?
Growing up my my brothers and I would always start little businesses as often as we could. What started out as a lemonade stand eventually led to a partnership with our local Costco Wholesaler where we offered many different products outside our little lemonade stand. Along the way to creating Yodha Matcha we have learned from other industries where we once worked. Our business, and consulting pasts have helped pave the way to the continuous desire in want to invent and innovate in whatever we may be doing. Something good, hardly ever comes easily so we have had to work hard at structuring ourselves and proving ourselves as a high quality and reliable brand. Where we stand out is that we only work with private family owned farmed from the southern regions of Japan were Matcha is typically not imported from. This allows our customers a chance to taste a sweet yet grassy Matcha that is fully organic and extremely high quality. Our determination to only bring in the best Matcha from Japan is unwavering.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
For someone who likes Nature and wants to see exotic plants I don’t think there is a better place than Fairchild Tropical Gardens. After a nice tour of the gardens a great place to get an appetizer would be the rooftop at Mr C called Bellini where you have the best view of coconut Grove. Alternatively if you are really hungry you can get a delicious burger in Lokal right down the street from Mr. C. On the beach the staple of food in my opinion is Joes stone crab which has been there longer than any other restaurant. If you are feeling a little fancier you can check out Zuma for an asian fusion assortment of food that always hits the spot. However, in my personal opinion there is one restaurant that never upsets and is as reliable as the sun coming up. Its called Hillstones or Houstins as natives still call it, and is located in Coral Gables.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Somewhere along the process of starting this business we realized we needed more structure and direction. We came across an optimizing coach named Mike Rosenfeld. He was crucial in the early stage development and help us gain direction and really understand our reason for selling Matcha or our “WHY” and he helped the brand create its own personal identity.