Hello From the Other Side
I must have called a thousand times (or changed my mind until I finally figured it all out).
First I'd like to take the time to summarize the past few months.
1. I went on another origin trip to Colombia at the end of February and stayed throughout March. On this past visit I was able to go to Jerico, Antioquia. There, we visited producing farms, cupped coffees, and bought some sacks (for all of you), too.
My favorite part of this trip was being able to spend days with the producing family and their kids on the farm as well as talk non-coffee things over a family-friendly dinner.
After our trip to Antioquia, I got the chance to visit La Divisa, a farm in Buena Vista, Quindio owned by producer Diofanor Ruiz. Our view during lunch: his 1800m high mountain tops filled with coffee. Yeah, it was pretty delicious and beautiful (both the food and the coffee).
We had a few other adventures in between but I'll save those for later.
All of these adventures wouldn't have been made possible without my producing family, Café Jesus Martín. It is an honor to be able to say that I will be the sole distributor of Café Jesus Martín in the U.S. for specialty small batch roasters.
2. SCAA Event 2016 exhibitor.
I exhibited at one of the biggest coffee shows for the first time --The Specialty Coffee Association of America hosted the SCAA Event in Atlanta, Georgia from April 14-17th.
My first time as an exhibitor meant that I actually had no idea of what I was doing. Zero. Naturally, not only was it a huge learning experience, but also it turned out to be a huge success.
As people approached my booth, my palms got sweaty and my heart started to race a little faster, I hadn't rehearsed what to say or how I was going to say it. I spoke about my passion and I didn't need notecards or a review of what I was exhibiting I didn't need to sell the idea of M.A.S. Café. All I needed to do was be nice, smile, let people try our coffees and build a relationship from just bonding with another person. Then, would I mention what our goal was. I fully believe when you put your heart and mind into doing what you love, it'll all turn out a success. And if you surround yourself with people who want to see you succeed, you can pretty much conquer anything. Having my family by my side made my backbone that much stronger.
3. I can finally say, "I have an importing coffee business." However, I can also say "it's not as glamorous as people make it out to seem," (owning your own business, that is). And I'm still learning the whole HOW TO.
Sure, it has it perks. I decide what ever the hell I want to do. But I don't have hours of operation or PTO or over time or any of that. It's full friggin time. And since I am just starting out, I'm sort of broke, but I'll pay you in coffee. Nonetheless I'm loving every minute of it.
OH YEAH, I found a business partner! It's my brother. He's actually the "S" in M.A.S. --Santiago. He's the piece to the puzzle that I was missing, FINANCE help and keeping me in line.
Ok that pretty much sums up what I've been up to for a the past few months.
NOW, M.A.S. Café is an official green coffee importer. We are importing premium, high-end green coffee from producing families who have the right to work with equal treatment, more than fair wages, and an overall better lifestyle. Our goal is to tell the story from farm to cup. The FULL story.
We work directly with farmers and oversee all of the processing. They are family to us, friends, and children. We continue to transfer the story of our friends at the farm to the roasters we provide with coffee. M.A.S. Café will transmit the stories to our roasters who will roast the coffee with the same amount of care and respect. Baristas will know each story, of each coffee and will prepare specialty coffee for consumers inspired by producing families. We, us, you and me, will consume gold (pretty much) and give back to those families who have, from the beginning, put in so much for us to enjoy the taste and appreciate the relationships established through a cup of CAFÉ.
M.A.S. Café, porfavor.
Want to take a trip to origin? Contact us! We'd love to host you in our HOME!
Keep in touch, amigos.