Meet Alex Kaiser: GM at the Belltown Café

Most Macrina GMs begin their careers behind the counter and gradually ascend to leadership positions. Alex Kaiser is the rare exception. Joining Macrina in January 2024, he brought with him more than a decade of management experience in the hospitality industry. He immediately impressed our leadership team with his people and management skills.

Previously the manager of a popular local sports bar, Alex was looking to transition into a management role in a growing, community-focused company. “I loved Macrina’s products and had heard great things about the company as a place to work,” Alex says, adding that he was also ready to embrace a lifestyle that didn’t involve working late into the evening. “I met the Macrina leadership team and felt really comfortable right away.”

For the first few weeks, Alex trained at the other Macrina cafes, learning from each of the GMs and their management styles. “There were subtle differences in how they approached things, but one thing they all had in common was a sense of happiness and positivity,” says Alex. “It felt like a theme, which made me very comfortable coming in.”

Arriving as an outsider came with its hurdles, but Alex quickly earned the trust and support of his Belltown crew. “I inherited a great team,” says Alex. “Strong people, hard workers, great personalities, and very positive. That made the transition a lot smoother.”

Before moving to Seattle in mid-2020, Alex, originally from North Dakota, spent a decade living and working in Baltimore. His leadership roles there included overseeing the bars and restaurants at a Maryland horse track and managing a prestigious members-only club frequented by professional athletes.

As the pandemic hit, Alex took a two-week hike on the Appalachian Trail. “It was a blast,” Alex says. “It was kind of my first foray into backpacking. I just kind of dove in headfirst — maybe a little too headfirst.” That trip led to a visit to the PNW for another hiking trip. He fell in love with Seattle and the natural splendor of the area, prompting his move to the city with his brother. In his spare time, he continues to explore the outdoors by trail.

Although his brother eventually returned to his hometown in North Dakota, Alex has embraced the collaborative and positive culture at Macrina and found a home in Seattle’s vibrant community.