Addis Ababa, Ethiopia-based Garden of Coffee has relocated into a new headquarters, in what the roasting and retail company founder Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu describes as, “our love letter to Ethiopia and our amazing coffees and coffee cultures.”
A celebrated entrepreneur, founder of the soleRebels brand, and passionate advocate for inspiring positive economic change in her home country, Alemu launched the Garden of Coffee company last year. In addition to being a for-profit enterprise that provides dozens of jobs locally, the company aims to celebrate and promote Ethiopian coffee culture from seed to cup.
“Garden of Coffee is about allowing coffee lovers to live coffee,” Alemu said in an announcement of the grand reopening, which took place this month on the ground floor of the JFK building in the Sar Bet neighborhood of Addis. “In Ethiopia we don’t just grow coffee. We live coffee each and everyday. It’s embedded in the DNA of our daily life. Coffee personifies Ethiopia and we in turn personify it. We want to showcase and share that magic with people everywhere on the planet and our café-roasteries are the perfect format to do this within.”
Following the traditional Ethiopian method, all the coffee roasted within the new roastery café is done by hand with ceramic roasting pans over open heat sources. Digital screens within the café allow guests to see which coffees have been freshly roasted and are available for tasting, or customers may specify which of the available green coffees they would like roasted, to what level, and even by whom.
Coffees are sourced from growing regions throughout Ethiopia — and Ethiopia alone — and packaging includes specific references to the growing region, as well as the name of the individual person who roasted the coffee on-site, providing a deeper, more intimate association between the customer and the people behind their coffee.
“We are very excited about our roast to order business as it’s a true one of a kind model not available anywhere,” Alemu said. “People have different coffee palates so it is very appropriate to give them a way to select the roast type that they want.”
Garden of Coffee is now open in the JFK Building in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.