Tell us about Cloud Picker and why did you guys start roasting coffee in Dublin?
We started Cloud Picker in 2013 as Dublin's first micro roastery, roasting to order. Cloud Picker was born out of trip to Northern Thailand where we visited a coffee farm in the Doi Chang area on the Thai/Burma border. We literally rose up through the clouds on those mountains to visit the coffee pickers doing their work, an amazing and pivotal moment in our life.
We both came from corporate roles and the leap into the world of coffee really came from passion and curiosity, but also the quest to build a unique coffee offering for Ireland.
Where are you from and how did you get into coffee?
Frank is from Donegal and Peter is from Krakow. We decided to leave our jobs about 10 years ago and set up a catering business for weddings and events. It went really well but it's a crazy life! We then secured the spot in The Science Gallery and we were there for nearly nine years. We never foresaw that we would become so obsessed with coffee! I guess it's hard to pinpoint it but by being in the industry we were so interested in what else was out there and so our curious minds had us trying out new cafes all over!
What is the best coffee experience you’ve had ever?
It was probably a Panama Geisha that we sourced for the Irish Barista Championships a couple of years back.. Peter kept a secret stash of it and would delve into it for special occasions. It was incredible, exactly what you hope for in a Geisha, with tonnes of floral and fruity notes in there.
What do you think about sustainability in the coffee industry?
It's a big part of who we are here at Cloud Picker, our sustainability focus is on sourcing quality beans from direct trade sources to ensure farmers are getting the best price they can get, it is important to us to build direct relationships with these farmers, in fact, we are writing to you from Colombia right now, meeting and greeting our potential next farm partners and Ireland's next rounds of exceptionally good coffee.
On the recycling front we really aim to reduce all our waste, for some of our Dublin cafes we send out our beans in reusable tubs, delivered and collected in our Electric powered van. Our retail packaging is 100% recyclable or compostable, helping our consumers reduce their waste too. It really is a large part of our business and it can always be improved, so keep an eye out as we will be looking to make further adjustments to further improve our sustainability models.
Tell us about the coffees featuring in this months Brew Box?
El Bombo -
El bombo is a small farmers association, constituted 2 years ago but growing under organic practices for 15 years now. Located in Bombo village in Pitalito (South Huila). Asobombo is committed to sustainability, organic farming and high differentiation of coffee.
The region of Pitalito in South Huila is the largest producer of coffee in Colombia. Known for its highlands and favourable climate, the region has produced multiple cup of excellence winners and is recognised worldwide for its high quality production. With its high altitude and rich volcanic soils, Pitalito coffees are characterised by a distinct acidity with notes of stone fruit, chocolate and caramel.
Tell us something uncoffee related about yourselves?
Frank worked in graphic design for many years and so we think that shines through in our packaging. He is constantly looking for ways to enhance the visual design, make them more practical for transport and retail shelving, as well as reducing our carbon footprint.
Peter is an amazing chef, he got it from his momma! Occasionally you'll see one or both of them hopping into the kitchen on Pearse St as if it's their everyday!
What's the plan for the future?
We had a massive 2019 and we are still catching our breath, opening our first independent cafe at 42 Pearse Street, Dublin 2 and expanding our wholesale partnerships. We do have some pretty big developments in the works for 2020 but all will be revealed soon enough. All we can say is stay tuned and watch this space.....our space - www.cloudpickercoffee.ie