Mathijs Olij

Position: Founder Bowler Coffee Roasters

Photography: Dias Nurmagambetov

Mathijs Antoon Olij was born in Amsterdam 1977 with a Dutch Indonesian heritage. He was raised in a family of retail entrepeneurs in a small village located in the heart of the Netherlands.

After finishing his higher education within the Automotive Industry, at the young age of 21, he got invited by Kazakh businessmen to assist them starting a professional indoor go-kart center, the first of its kind in Central Asia, located in Almaty. 

This challenge was a life changing experience and the start of a beautiful lifetime relationship with Kazakhstan and its people.

After completing his mission in 1999 he was urged to go back to Holland to proceed his career within the IT business and eventually retail. During these years his heart led him to coffee, a hobby that gradually turned into a healthy obsession. His personal love for coffee wasn’t “out of the blue” as his pioneer Dutch grandfather supported by his Indonesian grandmother established several coffee farms in Java & Sumatra, Indonesia,during the 1920’s, a story by itself. After exploring coffee as an experienced hobbiest he decided to attend professional education at “Barista Training” at ABC’s in Portland, USA (2009)and eventually “Coffee Lab Pro” Coffee Roasting at Boots in Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2016).

In 2010 he decided to leave a normal alimentary job and instead choose, like an artist, to fight for his passion with relentless determination. 2010 was also the year when his return to Central Asia became a fact.

Together with his family he moved to Kazakhstan setting up the “Barista-Academy” that same year, one of the first, if not the first Coffee & Barista Academy active in Kazakhstan specialized on educating coffee entrepeneurs, professionals and coffee lovers. After many requests from friends and students the idea for Bowler Coffee Roasters took shape in 2015, resulting in todays Bowler Coffee Roasters, a classy Dutch Coffee Establishment with already elegant and cosmopolitan afficionados, a unique place of this kind in Almaty and in Kazakhstan .

His favorite coffee: Espresso Doppio & Caffe VOC Freddo
His favorite bean: Sumatra Crowned Garuda