NAME: Cara Zebrowski
YEARS ROASTING: 8 Years roasting
MACHINES: Diedrich IR-1, Diedrich IR-12, Probatone 5
COMPANY: The Pantry, Cold Spring, NY
Cara is drawn to roasting probably for the same reason a lot of people like making coffee: she wants to give people something tasty and enjoyable. “I guess I really want people to feel good when they drink coffee I've prepared,” she shares. “It's silly, and too simple a thing, but I really want someone to feel better. Everything else may be falling apart and on fire around them, but this, this one thing, this is something I can do for them to make the world suck a little less.”
NAME: Izi Aspera
COMPANY: Wrecking Ball, San Francisco, CA
It’s difficult to write a story about Izi Aspera. Writing a story about someone usually implies that there’s a beginning and an end; writing stories specifically about Matchbook roasters sometimes ends as a summation of all the moments, eccentricities, and happenstance events that got them to this very moment and how all that experience has shaped the way they view coffee. They tell us about how they view coffee, and somewhere in their personality quirks and life experiences, we sort of get an idea of how they roast and perhaps a sneak peek into how they approach each and every coffee.
NAME: Jen Apodaca
COMPANY: Royal Coffee Importers
Jen’s release will be like nothing we’ve ever featured before. Instead of one coffee, you’ll be getting three, in a release she’s calling Mugshots. Each of the three coffees you’ll receive will have original artwork, by Jen, of three different women that Jen has described as meaningful to her. “These folks are my patriots,” and in describing these people, we feel like you’ll get to know Jen better.
NAME: Jacob Mingle
RELEASE: New Meditation
COMPANY: Totem Coffee, Placerville, Ca
One phrase came up over and over when we talked to Jacob Mingle, Matchbook’s featured roaster for June. Jacob, who is the owner of Totem Coffee Roasters in Placerville, California, kept mentioning his principles; when he discussed roasting, or his store, or the way he lives his life. Jacob saw this project as a moment to step back and reevaluate his place in coffee. “This whole project has been so much more profound than I ever thought it would be,” he says.
NAME: Camilla Yuan
RELEASE: No Use Ganchos
COMPANY: Temple Coffee Roasters, Sacramento, CA
“I’m not really used to talking about myself.”
Camilla opens up our conversation hesitantly—the only way I can think to describe Camilla in the beginning is cautiously grateful. Camilla is our featured roaster for the month of May, and when you ask her why she thinks she was chosen to be part of the project, she responds with the same careful grace. “I was so floored. I thought, ‘me?’”