May 25, 2021 • 41M

Roast! - Kyle Rosa, Breakers Coffee & Wine, Bluetail Coffee Grove

Picking a degree in life.

 
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The Roast! West Coast podcast introduces you to the premier coffee roasters, coffee experts and coffee innovators on the West Coast. Author, entrepreneur, and host Ryan Woldt interviews guests to bring you their origin stories, thoughts on the community of coffee, and coffee education.
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A top view of an Orange Throated Whiptail lizard. It has a long 10 inch bright blue tail, with black and yellow orange strips running down its back.
Orange Throated Whiptail Lizard (juvenile). Photo Credit Sarah Camp. Licensed via Creative CommonsAttribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic.

Kyle Rosa - Bluetail Coffee Grove, Breakers Coffee & Wine

How big does a plot of land have to be, to be considered a farm? That is one of the questions this episode of the Roast! West Coast coffee podcast inspired me to ask. Turns out there are a lot of different answers.

Regardless of your definition there is no doubt that Kyle Rosa is getting his hands dirty in San Marcos, California. Like a lot of us, Kyle found himself on a career path that was going in the opposite direction of his intrinsic passions. He and his wife made a change, and he took on the challenge of Bluetail Coffee Grove (organic). The grove’s name inspired by the lizards that scatter when you walk between the coffee plants.

A close-up photo of Kyle Rosa with a blurry agriculture green field behind him. Kyle is wearing a brown hat, has a scruffy beard, and a grey long-sleeve tee with the Breakers Coffee Co. logo on it.
Kyle Rosa, Founder Bluetail Coffee Grove & Breakers Coffee & Wine. PC: Via @Breakers_DelMar on Instagram.

Bluetail Coffee Grove is actually part of the Frinj Coffee network of farms that buys their coffee plants from company, and receives support—technical, agricultural, marketing—from Frinj above. Earlier this season, I interviewed Jay Ruskey, the founder of Frinj, and I strongly recommend you check out that show after this one.

Listen: Jay Ruskey Interview

I can’t say that I really understood the connection between Bluetail and Frinj when I reached out to set up the interviews. I just thought it would be a cool perspective to talk to a local farmer about the challenges and opportunities of domestic coffee farming. I was hoping to get one farmer on the show this season, but am grateful both Jay and Kyle agreed to chat. Listening to their perspectives from different points in the chain makes for a more comprehensive understanding of the work, the branding and the motivations behind domestic coffee farming. Coffee growing is not for faint of heart, and a little stubborn persistence seems to help.

While the farm was the dream, Kyle saw the opportunity for a vertical business move, and along came Breakers Coffee & Wine which is only about a month away from opening, at which point Kyle will be juggling a lot of positions. He’ll be the head farmer, head coffee roaster and the guy overseeing both businesses.

Kyle and his Wife, also just welcomed a new son into their family. With both businesses and a growing family things are about to get pretty hectic in the Rosa house.

Breakers Coffee & Wine opens will have an e-mail membership or customer loyalty program with limited capacity. Having watched the other domestically grown coffees selling out, sometimes in a single day, you might want to sign up on breakersdelmar.com with your e-mail to save a spot, and follow their instagrams @bluetail_coffee_grove & @breakers_delmar for updates on the farm and the opening story at the cafe.

Breakers on Instagram


During the show, Kyle references the C-market (coffee market) price, as have a lot of other guests. The coffee being bought and sold at this price is not actually physical coffee yet. It may not even be growing yet. It is just an agreement to buy coffee, called a Futures contract, meaning the seller is agreeing to provide the coffee at specific price later, and the buyer, often a coffee broker is agreeing to buy it at a set rate. Similar to the stock market, buyers and sellers of these contracts are hedging their bets that the price will go up or down. 

Today’s C-Market price is at about $1.50 per pound which is seems really low to me, but is actually much higher than it was one year ago when it bottomed out at about 93 cents. On the commodities market you can essentially bet on what the C-market price will be.

A Nasdaq stock ticker showing the c-price over time.
Coffee is a commodity. Via Nasdaq.com

Seeing those numbers makes me appreciate the craft and care that goes into the roasted coffee I’m purchasing locally especially from roasters or cafe’s, like Coffee Cycle or Steady State, who make the effort to purchase coffee at fair prices, directly from the far when possible. They are likely paying more than the C-Market price, but they are not only getting a better product they are also creating a fair market alternative that we can feel good drinking in the morning.

SUBSCRIBE!

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INDUSTRY LEGACY PARTNERS

Need some coffee? Check out these great companies for delivery, pick-up and finally, even some on-site coffee enjoyment.

Zumbar Coffee & Tea • First Light Coffee Whiskey • Leap Coffee • Steady State Roasting • CAFÉ LaTERRE • Mostra Coffee • Cape Horn Coffee Importers • Marea Coffee • Coffee Cycle •


IN CLOSING

Don’t forget to listen to the recent interview Coffee Smarter Episode with Siri Simran Khalsa teaching us all about roasting trends.

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