6 Months After Launch
MAR 29, 2019
By KEVIN MAYBERRY
HELLO COFFEE FRIENDS!
We’ve officially featured 6-months of coffee offerings for our Roam Bravely subscription. Thank you to anyone who has helped us keep this project going and supported our endeavors.
There are so many things we have to be proud of. We’re reflecting on our successes and challenges as we reassess our goals and aspirations. We wanted to share some thoughts and updates on our company so far.
At the onset, spending a couple of seasons in El Salvador meeting coffee producers, we knew we wanted to do something that celebrated their efforts and made a deeper connection between them and coffee drinkers.
We wanted the world to feel a little smaller and to humanize the producers of coffee. To shift the mentality of coffee as a commodity to coffee as a special agricultural good grown by careful hands.
“We strive to make coffee producers household names. The feeling of family that fills us when we visit Carlos and Patty Pola’s home is what we want to share with you. The reciprocation of friendship, hospitality, and humor. These are the things that inspire us.”
Sure, there is a commercial element. We’ve built business relationships with producers. Sometimes the other parts can be overly romantic. The take-home for us is that both sides can be achieved in tandem; the business and the friendship.
Coffee brings people together. At origin and at home. We enjoy working in coffee because it’s not always about numbers, profit margins, and logistics. It is also about pleasure; diverse flavor profiles and cultural exchange; exploring the nuances of different growing regions, varieties, and processing choices. There are endless outcomes from an array of factors that influence the final experience.
Coffee picker with Pola Coffee.
Of 6 coffee offerings, 5 were from El Salvador. This is because we have the most legitimate relationships there. We do admittedly love the coffee, but the relationships we’ve grown and the love for the culture fuels these offerings. Our focus is on the producers and we’d rather have overlap and show consistent support rather than buy blindly from an importer.
That being said, it has always been our intention to feature a variety of coffees. When the same origin or producer is featured, we’ll always make sure to have a new variety, growing region, processing method, or roasting partner. Every coffee is special and we will always share the reasons why with you. Each coffee brings something special to the table and has individual significance.
Beautiful ripe coffee cherries on the tree
In the last year, Nicole has traveled to Peru and Ecuador in search of new relationships and flavor profiles. She is involved with the import of quite a few Ecuadorian nano-lots slotted to arrive any day now. So that’s something to get excited about. These are very high quality coffees that are difficult to acquire for most roasters. We will absolutely be featuring one of them very soon.
We also took a group trip to El Salvador and Guatemala in January of this year. During this visit we brought a couple buyers/friends along (origin trips are something we’re focusing on in 2020, so if you have interest, contact us for more information).
In El Salvador, we visited producer friends, Carlos Pola and Mauricio Salaverria, toured multiple farms and wet-mills, and connected with a really inspiring group helping to empower small-holder farmers. That was an especially impacting part of the journey. Helping producers with less resources can help keep coffee lands flourishing for generations, which has an extremely positive environmental impact. (We can talk more on that later).
We also have developing connections in Oaxaca, Mexico. A few years back we met Kate Avansino on our over-landing trip through Mexico. Kate owns a specialty shop in Oaxaca city and is doing amazing work there. She has been a vital part in establishing a coffee community there and forged great relationships with local coffee producers. Once we figure out the logistics, our plan is feature a Oaxacan coffee roasted be Kate and sent to your door. Another way to bridge the gap between you and a beautiful coffee growing region. Also because we love Mexico!