Do you see how that dancing natural light amplifies that beautiful espresso cup? That right there is what makes Seattle a wonderful city to live in. No, I’m not talking about the sun glimmering in the background. I’m talking about the innovation, the love, the passion, and the planning that so many people behind the scenes who live in this city – that I may never meet – poured into that double espresso that I was so lucky to call mine.
Recently hearing about some positive “behind thing scenes” movement going on over at Caffe Ladro, I decided to see what was brewing. I began with a little stroll over Caffe Ladro’s 15th Avenue location on Capitol Hill, where Jason, the resident barista, was serving up some sweet shots of Ladro’s own beans.
Jason, who is also a photographer when he is not crafting coffee, was excited to tell me that my visit marks only the first month or so where Caffe Ladro has been exclusively offering their own roasted beans.
Yup, you heard that right. Caffe Ladro is now roasting their own beans locally and that they are sourcing themselves. The well-established Seattle café previously used beans roasted by Café Vita and most recently, Tony’s Coffee.
Selecting their environmentally sustainable beans from and beyond fair trade sources with local small farms that ensure fair wages and better working conditions for laborers have become a top priority for Caffe Ladro, which now has 13 locations in greater Seattle.
In a recent conversation with Jared Linzmeier, Director of Coffee at Caffe Ladro, I could tell that this is a significant turning point for the company – another progressive step in a beautifully unfolding coffee love story.
“This whole process is awakening a passion for coffee in our baristas,” Jared tells me. “Depending on the time of day, a customer can enjoy different blends and selections that highlight exceptional lots (of coffee). Each cup has character.”
Certainly, sourcing and roasting are falling in line with the company’s overall objectives. “We want to offer more transparency of our producers to make sure we’re doing this sustainably,” he added.
Back home, Caffé Ladro is also in the process of updating its cafes with fresh paint, new machines, and educating their staff about the coffee they serve by bringing on a local coffee trainer full-time.
Jared notes what I’ve already seemed to discover as a customer. Caffé Ladro baristas are committed to serving the best possible coffee they can each and every time. “The passion behind our people is really incredible,” states Jared.
But then he tells me something strange and delightful to hear at the same time. He tells me something that makes me want to be a life-long Caffe Ladro customer. He says that though customers have the ability to try a wide selection of varietals to of great tasting beans, Caffe Ladro offers their coffee “humbly and with respect to our customers.”
Wow! Here's an organization that continues to work, struggle, plan, and make a daily commitment to delivering the best possible coffee they can offer, but recognizes that in the end, it’s the individual customer who decides what kind of beverage they want. And that is why I believe the Seattle Coffee Scene is the best in the world.
Is it possible to drink pure love, commitment, and customer service? You can at Caffe Ladro. Check ‘em out.
Location: 435 15th Ave E
Neighborhood: Capitol Hill
The map below details where their 15th Ave. on Capitol Hill location is… (***Their Lower Queen Anne**** Location is below the first map!)
Lower Queen Anne Location!