To hang out with Joe is to have a conversation, some good food, something amazing to drink, and some laughs. Enriching people’s lives and connecting people to each other and to their world is something Joe thrives on.
Why? Because his life has been so enriched by others, and it’s impossible for him to not pass that on.
Joe is married to Monica, and they have two incredibly creative and curious children (a son and a daughter). Spending time with them in the kitchen, in the woods, at the park, or just on the couch is where Joe will usually be -if not at work or involved with the coffee community. As a family, they thrive on hospitality and fun.
The love of coffee and a drive for excellence, friendships and social justice have sent Joe on a pretty amazing journey. His first real experience with specialty coffee was in Nuova Segovia, Nicaragua in 2001. On his first night in Nicaragua, he celebrated his 21st birthday in small restaurant in Managua, not knowing that it would launch his adult life into this coffee filled quest.
Joe did not work full time in coffee for another five years, however. His first coffee job was at a tiny café in Cape Girardeau, MO called Grace Café. This is where he was able to begin honing his drink making abilities. From there, in 2008 he moved back to Saint Louis and began working with a top notch quality focused coffee roasting company called Kaldi’s Coffee Roasting Company. They took a risk with him and hired him as a roaster with no prior roasting experience. Yet, it was his love for the barista craft that pushed him to get more involved with barista training, wholesale customer care and to participate in the United States Barista Competition.
Three years later, Joe is the South Central Regional Barista Competition reigning Barista Champion, the Midwest Regional Barista Guild of America Chapter Representative, an SCAA certified lead instructor, and a Level 2 BGA Certified Barista.
Joining Café Imports was the next natural step for Joe. The image of his Nicaraguan friends rests solidly in his mind. Curiosity, a desire for quality coffee, involvement in what is happening at the farm level, and the need to play a role in pushing specialty coffee forward keeps Joe engaged and working hard. Café Imports’ commitment to quality, service, and sustainability line up directly with Joe’s personal ethic, allowing him to team up with them toward those ends.
So, the next time you see Joe at a trade show, coffee event or barista jam, be sure to say hello. A good conversation and some excellent coffee will most likely quickly follow.
Phone: 651-209-6102 ext:490