Yoka’s coffee is more than just a delicious roastery and coffee shop, Yoka’s coffee is also a central gathering space and social asset for the community of North Park.
What is your History in North Park?
My partner, Tristian, and I started Yokas coffee in Vancouver in 1983 however, we knew that we would have to move at some point because the building owner had businesses he would be installing in our space. We had looked in Victoria some years earlier, we'd like the scale Victoria at that time, it was more affordable than Vancouver. When we finally noticed that we had to move, we immediately went about looking in Victoria again. This building on Mason street was for sale. So we were lucky to get it… and we have loved North Park right away and never looked back”.
Does any person or group in North Park come to mind when you think about community superheros?
“One example is the owner of the old barber shop beside Welburns. He had a customer who had a walker that was constantly breaking down. He went to the mobility store further down along Cook Street and said ‘Is there any way we can, you know, get something for this guy?’ and the Mobility Store contributed a scooter. If Ralph hadn't taken that initiative, that person probably would have not been able to afford the scooter or been able to get it so quickly… a good example of how, you know, is if a business person knows people in their neighborhood and when they need help, they contribute, like Ralph.”
Community Quotes about Yoka's Coffee
"One day I came across Yoka’s Coffee on Mason Street, which is owned and operated by Yoka and Tristan. They hadn’t been there long. I love coffee and they were welcoming and independent thinkers who enjoyed a conversation. They became my go to first walk of the day. Unbeknownst to them they became allies in my recovery. Superheroes do hidden acts of kindness that they probably would be surprised to know they had actually done.
"They fit right into the great history of coffee shops all over the world."
- Community Member, (personal communications, March 2020)
Three words you would use to describe North Park?
“Diverse, affordable and friendly.”
Yoka & Tristian, Yoka's Coffee shop owners (Personal communications, February 2020)