The cofounders of Sprudge, Jordan Michelman and Zachary Carlsen, write in the first pages of their book The New Rules of Coffee, “Drinking coffee is one of the most global things you do each day.”
Coffee is grown in at least 70 countries across four continents, despite being extremely finicky and difficult to work with. The bean, which is actually a fruit, is bagged and sent to roasters all over the world after being farmed, harvested, and processed.
These beans arrive to roasters in their natural greenish-grey shade, ready to turn the seed of a cherry into one of the world’s most famous beverages. The best of these roasters, all with the official classification of speciality coffee roaster, pull out of the bean what few others do, and drive coffee forwards for it.
These are the places where the best coffee bags are produced, hailing from traditional coffee nations like Italy, New Zealand, and Spain, as well as the coffee world’s newer frontiers like Japan, South Korea, and the United Kingdom.
Coffee from The Barn
Berlin, Germany is where you’ll find us. The year the company was founded was 2010. The Barn’s strategy is straightforward: source, roast, and brew ridiculously good coffee. Its commitment to bridging the gap between the holy trinity of coffee is what makes it stand out. The four cafés and roastery of Ralf Rüller are testaments to this.
The first move is to get the best beans possible, which means beans that are of the highest quality (The Barn frequently sources from farms and farmers who have earned the Cup of Excellence) and grown in environmentally friendly ways. The Barn also pays high prices for premium beans, which sounds like an obvious thing to do, but is rather rare in the coffee world at large (specialty coffee’s battle with the commodity coffee market is telling of this). It also “slow roasts” the beans it purveys, a practice that results in a bean that’s lightly roasted and carries as much of the bean’s terroir as possible.
Unlike most roasters and coffee makers, The Barn even goes as far as training its baristas in the vocabulary and methods of roasting as a means to better communicate with the roasting team. There’s a reason every interview Rüller has ever given contains at least one use of the word “uncompromising.”