When you start a specialty coffee roastery, you probably have the ambition to start travelling to origin countries, meet producers and eventually begin sourcing coffee directly from trusted partners. But what if you could work at a high profile roastery for some time and then spend a year on a coffee farm in Panama before going back to your home country to set up your own business?
That’s exactly what Jaroslav Tucek, his girlfriend Kamila and their friend and business partner Jaroslav Hrstka did prior to launching one of Czechia’s leading specialty coffee roasting companies in 2010.
Jaroslav Tucek first got his start in coffee while he was a student in California in 2002 where he worked at Portola Cafe. He later continued his studies in Vancouver where he got a chance to learn how to roast coffee at 49th Parallel before returning to his native Czechia to work at one of the country’s first specialty coffee roasteries and learning his skills from American trainer Jeremy Raths.
At the time, specialty coffee was starting to take off around Europe but Jaroslav Tucek and Kamila were not yet ready to set up their own business in coffee. Instead, they reached out to Panamanian coffee producer Graciano Cruz, who offered them some work on his farm if they moved to Boquete. Their friend Jaroslav Hrstka, who was working at La Boheme in the US at the time, left his job to join them in Panama and together they rented a flat in Boquete. What was initially just meant to be a short term experience eventually lasted for a whole year during which they shadowed Maria Ruiz, the country’s biggest coffee exporter and got to meet a lot of very important people from across the global coffee industry.
As Jaroslav Tucek explained in another interview: “She taught us everything. And the nice thing is that if you mean something in the world of coffee, you visit Boquete at least once a year, so we got to meet people, too, like the guys at Intelligentsia or Stumptown. That would never be possible here in Prague.”
When they eventually returned to Prague in 2010, they decided to set up a roastery called Doubleshot, and this behemoth of Czech specialty coffee has been going strong ever since. We first worked with them in 2018 and instantly fell in love with their passion and dedication to finding the best coffees and roasting them to bring out the very best chacteristics inherent to each coffee.
Over the many years since its founding, Doubleshot has been cultivating long-term partnerships with a handful of producers whose entire annual production they buy. In addition, they invest in their infrastructure and education to ensure knowledge is transmitted in the most effective way possible.
Though wholesale coffee roasting is their main business, Doubleshot also runs a number of cafés in Prague, each one with its unique identity and character. When I was last in Prague, I visited their first café, Můj šálek kávy, which was originally founded by a South African expat living in Czechia. The name means ‘my cup of coffee’ in Czech. When Roland, the owner, had to go back to South Africa for urgent family matters, he offered the café to Doubleshot.
Nowadays, they have more than 90 employees across their various outlets and training centers and they donate around $25.000 annually to good causes such as Red Noses, which aims to bring joy to children in hospitals.
We’re thrilled to bring Doubleshot back this month with yet another great coffee of theirs. It’s from the El Salvadorian region of Chalatenango where the Jarsolavs and Kamila also spent a few months working, helping farmers make raised African beds, installing depulpers and doing quality control for approximately 50 producers.
This coffee is the product of seven small-holder coffee farmers who contributed their crops towards a blend called Aguacatal that consists of the Pacamara variety. El Salvador is known for its Pacamara and Pacas varieties and this washed coffee has a very clean and outspoken cup profile with notes of red apple, pears, yellow fruits and toffee.
Receive this coffee along with outstanding coffees from MOK and Keen as part of our November 2023 European coffee roasters selection for November. Visit our shop to order your box. Ships globally on 20.11.2023