Sourcing great coffee, from bean to cup

12 Apr 2019

Looking for a coffee on campus? Well, look no further, because from Tuesday 30th April, we’re teaming up with local coffee aficionados  Garage Coffee to bring you the most delicious brew on campus – as chosen by visitors, staff and students.

During our Gulbenkian Open Day in January, we invited four Kent-based coffee suppliers to come and join us on campus, where visitors were free to chat with, taste-test and rate each coffee company. Garage Coffee came out on top in the categories of taste and sustainability.

Based on our research, we are delighted to work with them to serve their delicious house blend Maypole and a selection of single origin filter coffees. The Gulbenkian will become the place to go for a speciality coffee experience at an affordable price. Importantly for us and the team behind Garage Coffee, they ensure that any coffee they produce comes from farms where workers are paid a good rate for their beans. They only use importers who deal with these speciality farms, which means that they know that the farmers are getting paid, on average, around 25% more than the fair-trade rate.

We will also be serving a fabulous array of loose leaf teas, expertly blended by Debonair Tea, a family-run tea business in Kent. James and Alice from Team GC will be on site on 30th April, so please come up to the café and say hi, have a chat to them about coffee and take your first look at this fantastic new addition to the speciality coffee scene in Kent!

A little bit about the Maypole blend (Mexico/Columbia)

On the Colombian farm…

Santa Bárbara Estate employs 60 people all year round, who on average earn 30% above the minimum wage. Half of these also receive free housing within the farm for themselves and their families. A further 1,200 pickers are hired during the main harvest, comprised mainly of farmers from around the Santa Bárbara Estate who pick coffee to supplement their income. Workers are generally long-term employees and have been with the company for more than 10 years.

The Santa Bárbara Estate also runs an extensive scholarship and financial aid program for worker’s children as well as helping long-standing employees to acquire their own piece of land upon retirement.

On the Mexican farm…

Owner, Cecilia Camberos, is a fascinating woman who owns no fewer than 15 dogs! She, herself, lives in Coatepec and produces her coffee with the utmost passion. Cecilia and the 8 people who help her farm, Consolapan, year-round keep working to make the farm the best that it can be. All coffee on the farm is selectively hand harvested, with only the best ripe cherries being picked at each pass.

Find out more about Garage Coffee’s commitment to sustainability here