As someone who has lived his entire life in Northern Europe with the exception of a short stint in Australia when I was 19, I always think of moving somewhere warmer when I think of emigrating. But the term emigrating always carries this heavy weight in my mind. Like closing up shop on one continent and moving to another.
For some reason though, the idea of moving to Spain, for example, wouldn’t quite compute as emigrating to me. It’s more like relocating. Does that make sense?
In any case, I wouldn’t necessarily choose to move somewhere colder than where I am already. In the case of our second Scotland based roaster Obadiah Coffee Roasters the opposite is true. Founder Samuel Young actually emigrated from his native Australia to the British Isles in 2015 although initially, his plan was not to stay as long as he has.
“When I came to Scotland, I noticed that there was quite a big difference in the specialty coffee scene to what I was personally used to in my native Perth on the west coast,” Sam told me.
Even by Australian standards, Perth was still a bit behind cities like Melbourne and Sydney but still much further ahead than Edinburgh or Glasgow.
“But over the past five years, the scene here has really moved forward at a rapid pace and it’s been super exciting to be a part of it,” he continued.
Cafés like Cairngorn, Fortitude and Lowdown took things really seriously right from the get-go and stuck to a more progressive approach that somehow dragged the general public along with them. Sam actually worked at Cairngorn for about a year telling me that it was the first time he had worked as a barista in his life and that definitely taught him quite a lot.
Before moving to Scotland he worked as a roaster at Seven Seeds, one of the most prolific Australian specialty coffee brands who played a crucial role in moving Australia forward with regards to its reputation as one of the world’s most advanced specialty coffee nations.
After spending some time in Scotland, Sam saw an opportunity to set up his own roasting business and he jumped at it. That is how Obadiah was born. The word is a biblical theophorical name that means ‘servant of god’ and Sam explained that it was originally chosen as the name for band he wanted to start.
Unfortunately, the band never really got its act togeether and everyone then went on to do other things but the name stuck in his memory.
At some point, he had the opportunity to open a pop up café in Edinburgh for five months and was able to get direct consumer contact with local coffee drinkers who really appreciated his coffees. Following the pop up, he set up the roasting business that has been thriving ever since.
With gorgeous packaging and really exciting coffees in his seasonal offering, Sam has been able to get a loyal following in his home town and further afield and having had a strong e-commerce game already in place before the pandemic hit made it much easier for him to keep his business afloat.
We’re excited to welcome Obadiah to our family of roasters as only the second Scotland-based roaster to ever make the cut. It was hard to choose our favourite coffee from him during last month’s cupping because they all tasted so delicious but in the end a decision had to made and it was the Colombia from La Ricuarte.
This coffee comes from the Velez family in Antioquia who produces great coffees in rather challenging conditions due to very uneven natural terrain and climates that can change in an instant. Yet, despite this, the coffees from the Velez family are always exceptional.
It consists of the Caturra, Castillo and Colombia varieties and comes with a sparkling and refreshing cup profile with notes of mandarin and toffee.
Get this delicious coffee from Obadiah alongside exquisite picks from Lomi and Goat Story as part of our forthcoming June ’20 coffee box.
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