Mastertons – THE coffee people

Everybody (well I hope everybody) in Port Elizabeth knows that if you are into filter coffee, THE place to buy your coffee is Masterton’s in Russell Road.  In actual fact, Masterton’s coffee is available just about all over South Africa and is served in a lot of hotels and restaurants.  There is nothing like going to the Masterton’s shop to buy your coffee directly and smell the coffee being roasted, a smell you get even when you just drive by in your car.  Masterton’s have been operating for 88 years and have really become a Port Elizabeth icon.
I borrowed the following history from Masterton’s Coffee & Tea Specialists’ website:     
The founder of Masterton’s Coffee & Tea Specialists, Ronald John “Jock” Masterton, born 13 November 1897, came to South Africa from Scotland in 1920 at the age of 23 after serving as an officer in the Black Watch regiment during the First World War. During the war, a fellow officer from South Africa persuaded him to make a new beginning in the land of sunshine. As soon as the war ended he did just that. “Jock” worked as assistant manager on the farm “Three Rivers” in Vereeniging where he met his future wife Marjorie, who at the time was visiting her uncle the farm manager. In love, he made the logical move to Port Elizabeth, Marjorie’s home town, where her father was the Harbour Engineer in charge of building the breakwater, which still protects the Port Elizabeth harbour to this day.

With the aim of establishing his own business, “Jock” travelled to Ceylon (modern day Sri Lanka), where he studied Tea Tasting, sampling more than 400 varieties of tea in a day. Returning to Port Elizabeth he opened “The Tea and Coffee House” at 33a Queen Street (now Govan Mbeki Avenue) 4 December 1924, and later moved to 114 Russell Road from where we still operate today. In the early years of the business, Masterton’s specialised in supplying the Port Elizabeth with top quality leaf teas, as tea was the “drink of choice” back then. As the demand for coffee began to grow, we extended our range to include coffee, which today what we are famed for throughout South Africa.

Our very first bag of coffee was a Brazilian, costing 1 Pound 18 shillings and sixpence. Today we have a large variety of in-house blends to suit all palates, specially roasted and blended by the proprietor and roast master, James Masterton.

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  1. Gaelyn

    Love that smell, and the coffee in SA.

  2. Anonymous

    Wow ! That's amazing !!