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Coffee Review

  • New Coffee | Rwanda Gitesi Kibuye

    Posted on May 9, 2015 by Venia Coffee Roasters | Keith

    Just a heads up on a limited availability offering from Rwanda. When I first cupped this coffee, it struck me as a cross between a complex Kenyan and a refined central American coffee. I have been in love with it from sip one. It originates from the Gitesi washing station and is made up from multiple small farm harvests from the surrounding Kibuye area. I have brewed this using french presses, Chemex's and a Clover brewer, all are a treat. Pulled as an espresso, wowzers, tropical fruit candy in a cup. We broke 70 degrees today and I brewed it as a Japanese style iced coffee, added a touch of cream and sugar...heavenly. This isn't a coffee that comes along every day.

    (Click for our offerings list)



    This post was posted in Uncategorized, Coffee Review, What We are Drinking Now, News and was tagged with Coffee, Rwanda, 90 point coffee, Espresso Roast, Iced Coffee

  • Square Peg Espresso | Uganda Kabum Cooperative

    Posted on January 29, 2013 by Venia Coffee Roasters | Keith

    Square Peg Espresso

    We are excited to announce that our Square Peg Signature Espresso blend is now using an amazing coffee from Uganda's Kabum Cooperative, produced high on the slopes of Mt. Elgon.

    This fully washed coffee is grown on the beautiful slopes of Mt. Elgon, an extinct volcano that sits on the border between Uganda and Kenya.  We chose this coffee to be the backbone of our Square Peg Espresso for many reasons, primarily because of its clean, sweet chocolate & citrus profile with a lush mouth-feel.  That all said, it is really-really freakin' delicious when pulled as an espresso.

    We also love how this coffee is produced, by the Kabum Cooperative farmers.  Kabum was started back in 2003 when a group from Oregon went to the area to build a small well to provide fresh water for the rural community of Kapchorwa.  What they saw was a community that needed more than clean water to succeed, they needed a means to escape the exploitation of their poverty.  Through a sponsorship program a school was built and the process of slowly empowering this community was under way.

    A bigger problem was clearly evident, however, that until families could earn a sustaining wage for their hard work, change would be difficult to come by and maintain.  After learning more about the incredible coffee growing potential of the terroir, Kabum was founded.

    Kabum has been able to return a much larger portion of profits to farmers because of their "True Trade" model of operation.  Venia Coffee buys coffee directly from Kabum, as opposed to a third party importer, and more of the profit goes back to the farmers. 2011 was the first crop year to hit US soil.  2012's coffee crop was even better and 2013's crop is looking to be the best yet.


    Uganda Kabum Farmers on Mt. Elgon


    Higher quality coffee can be sold for more, so the Co-op pays bonuses to farmers for higher quality coffees.  Education and training for farmers who aren't hitting the mark is also provided. Washing stations have been and are being built, a key to high quality coffee.  Low interest micro-loans allow farmers to purchase the land they farm and the equipment used for farming.  Lastly, more and more children in the Kabum community are receiving educations.   For the first time in the area's history, the exploitation of local residents is facing opposition. Does your coffee do that?

    Try a bag of Square Peg Signature Espresso today!

    This post was posted in Uncategorized, Coffee Review, Venia Gives Back, What We are Drinking Now, News and was tagged with Washed Coffee, Kabum, Uganda Coffee, Espresso, Kabum Cooperative, Mt. Elgon, True Trade

  • New Coffee Offering | Ethiopia Sidamo Ardi

    Posted on August 22, 2012 by Venia Coffee Roasters | Keith

    We continually search and scour for exceptional coffee lots that are worthy of the Venia Coffee name and it is with great pride that we formally announce the release of our newest offering from Ethiopia.




    Because of Ethiopian politics, few coffees being exported are traceable. This wonderful Ardi lot, from Sidamo, is an exception and comes from a family run farm near the town of Michicha. Each coffee cherry is selectively picked from heirloom plants and carefully dried inside the fruit on raised African beds. Meticulous attention is payed during this process assuring an exceptionally clean cup.




    We roast this light, stopping the roast as first crack is finishing up. Fragrant berries explode out of the bag. In the cup, lightly sweet, lemon, peach, fresh cedar, and a tangy ferment. Bright fruit-like acidity leads into a chocolatey medium body. A real treat.

    More information about this coffee & purchase here.

    Continue Reading

    This post was posted in Coffee Review, News and was tagged with Coffee, Coffee Roasting, New Product, Ethiopia, Ethiopia Sidamo Ardi, Ethiopian Coffee, Ethiopian Ardi, Natural Processed Coffee

  • New Coffee Offering

    Posted on June 13, 2012 by Venia Coffee Roasters | Keith

    In a few days we will be releasing another truly amazing coffee offering to our lineup, a natural process Ethiopia Sidamo Ardi.


    Venia Ethiopia Sidamo Ardi Coffee


    After cupping a huge number of samples, this Ethiopian Ardi lot really stood out and we quickly fell in love with it. The wonderfully sweet berry fruit aroma invites you to experience fermented brandy, fresh blueberry, and malt in the cup.

    Available in a few days. Stay tuned!

    This post was posted in Coffee Review, What We are Drinking Now, News and was tagged with Single Origin, New Product, Ethiopia Sidamo Ardi, Ethiopian Coffee, Ethiopian Ardi, Light Roast, Natural Processed Coffee

  • Defining "Single Origin" Coffee | A Response to Several Questions

    Posted on May 7, 2012 by Venia Coffee Roasters | Keith

    Single Origin Coffee | What Is It Exactly?

    I have received several questions over the past few weeks about what "Single Origin Coffee" is exactly.  I also just read a post from the Barista Exchange asking the same. Is it strictly coffee from a single farm, co-op, township, region, or country?  I have always held my specific conventions as to what a Single Origin (SO) coffee should be, but over the years this has more and more become a grey area.


    Regardless, this is an interesting question, and as far as I am aware there is no authoritative keeper of this vocabulary (ask 10 people get 10 different answers). So here goes my attempt to answer briefly tackle the SO question, and to no doubt start a broader conversation.


    "Single Origin today...what does it mean? It should be as simple as a single varietal from a single farm...."(from


    The heart of the question seems to highlight the underpinning desire to trace each coffee we drink back down to the farm/farmer.  But, I think the response to this idea needs to be grounded on how coffee is grown, processed and sourced around the world (which could easily take volumes of books to give the topic justice).  Geography, politics, culture, environment, war, poverty, corruption, etc, all pose challenges to the traceability of a coffee.


    For example, it is fairly easy for a hypothetical company to "travel to origin" (kind of a catch-phrase these days) to partner with a farmer in Guatemala; to invest in infrastructure, farming, education, processing...essentially forming a symbiotic partnership of sorts that improves both the quality of the final coffee and the community at origin.  A single origin coffee from this area of the world could easily be traceable down to the farm, plant varietal, processing type, fertilizer used...


    Move focus to Ethiopia, and tracing a coffee to an individual farmer is near impossible under their nationalized industry.  The Ethiopia Commodity Exchange (ECX) seems to constantly be changing the rules and have quashed most "direct trade" style traceability models requiring farmers to supply their beans to the exchange to be blended and sold in larger regional lots.  Traceability of most Ethiopian coffees is now Continue Reading

    This post was posted in Coffee Review, News, Coffee Education and was tagged with Single Origin, Coffee, Yirgacheffe,,,, SO, Traceability, Ethiopia Commodity Exchange, ECX

  • New Coffee Offering :: Ethiopia Yirgacheffe Adulina

    Posted on February 15, 2012 by Venia Coffee Roasters | Keith

    We are excited to announce the availability an exceptional East African coffee from the Yirgacheffe region of Ethiopia.


    From the birthplace of coffee, we are in love with this outstanding Yirgacheffe offering. From the first time we cupped a sample, we were in love.

    Many Ethiopian coffees are dried in the sun after picking with the fruity flesh of the coffee cherry still attached (called natural coffee). Natural processing can impart intense wild fruit and earthy flavors.

    In this Ethiopian lot, however, the fruit was removed early in the process by using water (called a washed coffee) which resulted in a medium bodied coffee that is beautifully sweet and clean with lively citrus, distinct spiciness, and subtle berry notes that delightfully linger on the palate.  Continue Reading

    This post was posted in Coffee Review, What We are Drinking Now, News and was tagged with Coffee, Coffee Roasting, Ethiopia, Africa, Yirgacheffe, Whole Bean Coffee, Single Origin Coffee

  • Nicaragua Washed Caturra Coffee

    Posted on August 31, 2011 by Venia Coffee Roasters | Keith

    Started the day off with a beautiful washed Nicaraguan Caturra Coffee from the Matagalpa region. What a beautiful coffee in almost every way. Dry grounds have a deep, luscious and smooth vanilla fragrance. Brewed in a 5 cup Yama Siphon: 35 grams of coffee steeped for 2 1/2 minutes. A surprising amount of body, sweet brown-sugar notes, and hints of wine-grapes. A wonderful Single Origin coffee.

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    This post was posted in Coffee Review, Random Thought

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