Greetings fellow coffee lovers! Nick Castellano here, co-founder of Global Origins Inc. Thought I could use this platform to illustrate a vivid explanation of what was the craziest and riskiest adventure of my life. So, here's a little insight on what sparked my sporadic decision to source coffee in Colombia for 2.5 months. Let me begin with an explanation about myself and the idea that started Global Origins Inc.
Before I begin, I'd like to begin with a short thank you to my parents Richard and Evangelina, my brother Jeremiah, my family, my girlfriend Luna and her family, and my business partner Colin for being so supportive of my business ventures. Without you all, none of this would be possible!
To know me is to know that I am a coffee connoisseur and a travel fanatic. My love for specialty coffee started when I was 17 while on a competitive cycling trip to Europe. Based in the Netherlands for five weeks, I discovered the local coffee shop called Coffee Mundo. My post ride visits there was my introduction to some of the best coffee I’ve ever sipped on. Fast forward five years, I’ve now visited 22 countries across 6 different continents. Checked many off my list but have one to go – who wants to go to Antarctica? On one of my most recent trips to Southeast Asia, I was fortunate to taste the rare and exotic Kopi Luwak in Bali, Indonesia in August 2018. It was at that moment I envisioned the brand I wanted to build. A brand that revolved around a travel lifestyle while highlighting some of the world's most exotic cultures.
Throughout my travels to Colombia, a country known for high-quality coffee and a beautiful culture, it quickly held a special place in my heart. It was my adventurous soul and love for Colombia that made me want to find Colombia's best and most exotic coffees. Not long after my first visit, I decided to pack up and leave to Colombia again for two and a half months. This time to really connect with the culture and learn their coffee industry from the ground up. I was fortunate enough to have stayed in touch with my girlfriend's grandparents who graciously hosted me while I was based in Medellin, Colombia. I knew nothing about coffee cultivation, nothing about roasting, and nothing about exporting/importing, but I knew that this was the first place I wanted as one of my brand origins. From cultivation to roasting and packaging in the country of origin, our vision is to provide a unique experience while maintaining a deep connection and supporting the countries of origin as much as possible. That’s what Global Origins is all about!
How did I get there? How could I make that trip possible? Well, two months before I left, I decided to drop by the Colombian Consul General in Los Angeles without an appointment, hoping to find a good lead. When I walked into their Beverly Hills office, I literally told the staff "I'm going to Colombia to find coffee. Where do I begin?" To my surprise, I was fortunate to have been connected with a representative from Pro-Colombia on the spot. That agency, under the Ministry of Commerce, Industry, and Tourism, created an agenda for me to visit coffee farmers, roasters, and exporters. It was a true blessing to say the least that I had the assistance of the Colombian government to guide me on my first sourcing trip. They finalized my agenda to visit Colombia's coffee axis and my Colombian coffee excursion began in May 2019. The moment I arrived into Medellin, my home away from home, I felt I made the right decision to come to Colombia. From the unique energy of Medellin to Colombia's coffee axis, a detour to Panamanian Gesha that led to Costa Rica's eco-friendly culture, all the way to the indigenous territories of Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, get ready for an untold story that will make you appreciate Latin America for coffee and far more.
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Stay tuned for Cup 2 of Nick's Coffee Sourcing Adventure.