Free boozy cocktails for all. $10 entry for the competitors! 35 competitors max. Sign ups at 6pm, competition begins at 7pm sharp. 1st round: coffee tasting competition. 2nd round: latte art competition. Don't be scared, you're gonna love it. Sponsors: Saint Anthony Industries, Taxi, Zeppelin Development, Drift Magazine. First place: up to $350 plus other fun things.
Thanks for coming to support good coffee and food this week. As you'd probably assume with a concept like ours, some weeks are easier than others. This week just seemed to take the wind out of my sails by a couple disrespectful customers who were downright rude. We try very hard to present the best coffee possible in a way that respects the farmer as much as the customer. That has been our goal long before profits were ever a conversation. I know all of you who are trying to change the way failing systems work have setbacks and difficulties....those people I keep in mind who fight hard to make the world better in weeks like this. Thank you to those who are ok with people trying to make the world better by saying no to things that are not ok. We love ya.
What do you think of this?
Very encouraged with this generation starting to get involved in helping their world change and combatting human rights abuse. We're encouraged as well by those of you who know that you vote for peace, stabilization, and ending poverty every time you drink better coffee from roasters who pay fair prices for green coffee. Most coffee farmers live humble lives in poverty, unempowered and unable to improve their lives because most coffee drinkers purchase coffee at way too cheap of a price. If you think you're getting a deal buying a cheap cup of coffee, you're actually maintaining the broken system. Personally we think coffee should cost what wine costs because its just as beautiful and complex and just as difficult to produce. Support roasters who are helping fix the broken system and give the voiceless a voice.
Today was an adventure. After landing our driver drove us on the highway which I'm sure was called how-are-we-not-dead-right-now-avenue to the town of La Entrada, which reminded me of Winter Park, except where the median home price is $900 instead of 900k. So...very different but also the same beauty of being squeezed in between mountains and meeting people everywhere with smiles.
Giovanny, or Geo, is our translator, and comedian. The first place we arrive to is the mayor's ...office in the small town of San Sebastián where we met together to talk about the current state of their 59 coffee farms that make up the COMICACOL co-op. Currently they are forced to sell to one buyer who pays them $1.87/lb or less for coffee (no, not the cherry after picked but the cherry after a month of work removing skin and mucilage and parchment). This is a very low number, especially when you understand the labor that went into the harvesting and processing. Here's a fun statistic: it takes approximately 1 hour for an experienced picker to pick what will be the equivalent of one pound of roasted coffee. Let's say for fun that this picker was paid half of current Colorado minimum wage, so, $4/hr. This means your coffee should probably at least cost $4 per pound so far in the chain. But there are about 8 more steps in the process of getting the seed (coffee bean) out of the cherry, all of which are labor intensive and can require expensive equipment, and all this is before a roaster pays to have the coffee imported and stored. You can see already that using this false $4/hr pay rate, the coffee we drink should be more expensive than it is.
I have been working in coffee for over a decade. I have tasted the world's best coffees, learned about farming from the comfort of home, accessing the internet to find out why some coffees have acidity, some are orangey, some woody, some rubbery, some chocolatey, some a combination, and on and on....but I have never tasted the cherries that hold this delicate seed I've learned so much about. I've never talked with a farmer about the difficulties he's faced this harvest. Today... I arrive in San Pedro Sula, The most dangerous city in the world, in Honduras. I will be traveling to the community of San Sebastián in the Copan region, where 58 small families of farmers form a coop, led by local mayor and coop president, Antonio Contreras. Here are the things that I already know that may surprise you: the majority of coffee farmers are impoverished; The coffee won't be that great here (if it were I probably would already have tried it from one of the Specialty coffee roasters in the US), the roads will be rough; there will be families who are very interested in improving their coffee; Their will be farmers who already believe their coffee is better than anyone else's; this community makes less than $2/pound to produce coffee.
Artists: we're putting together a group show for December-February at the shop! The theme: Black. Message me for submissions of your work or email email@example.com We're looking for 3-5 pieces from 6-8 artists. Submissions can be existing or new work. Yes, as you'd guess, we'e very excited about this show. #blackblackart