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Guelph, Ont. man gains millions of YouTube views by helping people work espresso machines


If you’ve ever had a tough time figuring out an espresso machine, a Guelph, Ont. man has you covered.

Matt Stiver is an engineer and fell in love with coffee as a student at the University of Guelph.

“Coffee is as nuanced as wine, if not more nuanced, in the processing methods, the origins,” said Stiver.

He became a coffee connoisseur and bought an espresso machine.

Stiver quickly ran into a problem – how to work it.

“There was no one to teach me about it,” he said.

Stuck with the complicated contraption, and knowing others were in the same boat, he decided to fill the gaps after not being able to find helpful espresso-related videos.

So he began making videos showing people how the machines work and which ones to buy.

“I try to help people essentially make the correct buying decisions when venturing into the deep and scary ocean that is at-home coffee,” said Stiver.

He began putting more effort into his YouTube channel, Lifestyle Lab, over the last few years while juggling his full-time day job. 

“I often joke that I work 9 to 5 as an engineer and then 5 to 9 as a content creator,” he said. “It really is the truth.”

He says he doesn’t pretend to be an expert.

“I really lean on my skills as an engineer, breaking things down, both technically doing physical product reviews, and then teaching it back in an easy-to-digest way,” Stiver said.

Coffee connoisseur, Matt Stiver, takes a sip of an espresso he made in his studio. (CTV News/Spencer Turcotte)

Brands have started sending him products to review. He travels the world for it and he has nearly 23 million video views to go along with his 85,000 subscribers.

He says it speaks to the demand for content like this.

“Anybody can go to a shop and look at one, but to see two [espresso machines] working side-by-side, that’s part of the value of the internet. You can compare in a really easy way,” said Stiver.

As his audience has grown, so has his at-home studio.

It has moved from the living room of his apartment to one of the bedrooms. But considering he’s making money from his videos, the investment is worth it.

“A person that stands in front of the camera and talks to millions of people on the internet about coffee is definitely not something I expected at all,” said Stiver. “It’s probably one of the largest accomplishments in my life.”

One day, he may have to choose between his current career and coffee content. But for now, he feels there is space for both – staying confident and caffeinated. Top Stories

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