DALY CITY, California - The Sitio Belis farm in northern Philippines’ Cordillera province is where some Filipino-American entrepreneurs source coffee beans.
Since 2013, Jelynn Malone, Beverly Magtanong, Sam Magtanong, and Mike Arquines have been successfully using these Philippine beans in their award-winning San Diego shop “Mostra Coffee.”
“I think the farm that we use the flavor profiles itself, lends itself to our flavors that we have all grown up to love: whether it's coconut or pandan, or just even straight vanilla or or langka,” said Arquines.
Beverly added that a lot of Filipino flavors go well with chocolate or vanilla.
“We're able to do that with the Philippine bean which is great,” she said.
Mostra founders are proud to report that their customers are enjoying the Philippine blends.
“Espresso drinks are like our top selling drinks, right? So Mike and his team have pretty much put Philippine coffee in our espresso blend. So basically, every single person that walks out with a latte or a mocha or a cappuccino is drinking Philippine coffee, and then it allows us to kind of have the reason to keep purchasing more and more,” said Malone.
Mostra Coffee started in 2009 when Magtanong and Malone volunteered to help build homes for poor families.
Taking the idea that a sustainable way to help more people is to provide jobs and Mostra is proud to say they are doing just that.
“The farm that we are purchasing the coffee from is comprised of about 200 small producers, the significant aspect of this is that we go beyond fair trade prices of coffee to direct trade, and we're able to provide a price point that is sustainable for the farmers,” said Sam.
After six years in the business, Mostra Coffee was recently named 20-20 Roasters of the Year by Roast Magazine.
The co-founders said that having this national recognition of Philippine coffee has been part of their original mission.
“To be able to see it on the competition stage and for it to be able to be part of the winning coffee and be part of the, I guess the winning story is a very humbling experience for us, and makes it all come full circle,” added Sam.
Mostra Coffee is already looking to expand in other parts of southern California.
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