Spotlight on Greatness 2019

As we reflect back on these first 3 years of Brewing Greatness, we realize that one of the best things along this journey (besides getting to roast coffee for amazing, like-minded people who also believe we can change the world!), has been working with some amazing, inspiring entrepreneurs! So, we couldn’t think of a better way to end our 3-year anniversary celebrations than to do a “Spotlight on Greatness” on 3 of our partners who are Brewing Greatness with us!

Chef Ivy Wolf | Ugly Cupcake Muffinry | Jacksonville Beach FL

Chef Ivy Wolf reached out to us when she was looking for a coffee roaster who shared her values (of high quality, sustainability, freshness, and making a difference!). To say she’s passionate, creative, and experienced is an understatement - she has a background in Psychology, a prior career in athletics as a professional Equestrienne, and a decade of culinary experience. During the past 5 years, Chef Wolf has refined her focus to fresh and healthy eating. She believes (as we do!) that eating well is the key to good health, and that doing so can be done in exciting, creative ways. She features fresh, local ingredients crafted with professional perfection... everything from the Bruffins to the Benedicts is absolutely amazing, with beach views and coffee to match! (Instagram @uglycupcakemuffinry). So, the next time you’re in the Jacksonville area, we hope you’ll give her a chance to delight you! Menu, hours and more at

Meghan & Stewart Mackie | N+1 Coffee | Winter Haven FL

N+1 Coffee started about a year ago, when the Mackies decided to add a high-quality craft coffee bar to their Bike Shop, and to their hometown! Their name was inspired by the idea that the ideal number of coffees (or friends, or bikes) is always N+1 (i.e. you can always have one more!). N+1 has now outgrown its original spot inside the Bike Shop and has now its own (beautiful - find them on Instagram @nplus1coffee) space next to the Bike Shop, and they’re open every day of the week! They feature an impressive Pour-Over menu, Espresso drinks (pulled on a state-of-the-art “Strada”), Cold Brew, loose-leaf teas, and locally baked pastries. They pick up freshly roasted coffee every week (yes, every week!) to ensure unparalleled freshness… and we’re already planning some Ethos Cuppings (aka. coffee tastings) there for this Summer, so stay tuned! More at

Berna & Erkan Nar | The Market at Cafe Zuppina | Lakeland FL

We were introduced to Berna & Erkan through two of our amazing Ethos fans - who are also huge fans of their fine-dining restaurant, Cafe Zuppina (which, by the way, is the best restaurant in Lakeland - according to many local publications, and perhaps most impressively - over 500 reviewers in TripAdvisor). They are known for being “passionately committed to offering the freshest organic and local ingredients possible” and all we can say is that their level of care and focus on quality of every single ingredient is admirable - they taste-tested each of our coffee origins and blends against several local (and national) roasters, and on several methods (including traditional, sand-cooked Turkish coffee!). We were impressed with their level of professionalism, their depth of research, and honestly ecstatic when they told us they’d chosen us to be their roasters! If there’s a foodie paradise in Lakeland, this is it! World-class, yet fresh and locally sourced, Mediterranean food, craft coffee, Italian gelato, and French pastries by people who are deeply passionate, highly trained, and well-traveled (and it shows!). More at

We hope you’re ready to discover a new favorite place! AND… if you make it to ALL 3 before the end of 2019 - we’d like to offer you a FREE 1-lb of coffee of your choice completely on us (we’ll ship free too!). Just: (1) visit and take a picture at each place, (2) share on Facebook and Instagram (don’t forget to tag us - @ethosroasters), and (3) send us an email with your IG handle, your name, and shipping address… and choice of coffee!

We can’t wait to see your posts… and hear your thoughts on these amazing places!

Thank you for choosing to Brew Greatness in the world with us!

Jolian & Lisbeth

THIS IS WHY & you're invited!

Earlier this month, a super talented, super generous individual wrote a story about us… we loved it so much, we wanted to make it our first guest post! (there’s also a quick invitation for you at the end of the post - please mark your calendars for March 10!). Here’s “THIS IS WHY” by Jeremy Reyes:


“Please copy us,” said Lisbeth, in an interview with Brandspark. In a world of patents and trade secrets, a craft roastery in Lakeland Florida has set out to be an open-handed example of how to make a difference in the lives of small coffee farmers and coffee consumers around the world.


Both Lisbeth and Jolian were surrounded by coffee farms as children. Lisbeth grew up in Guatemala City drinking “cafe con leche” while Jolian grew up in Colombia’s “Eje Cafetero” (coffee-lands). Decades later, they both came to Florida where they met, fell in love, and decided to pursue a life where they could make a difference in the poorest regions of the world (who happen to have the best coffee).

It all started in 2016 when Lisbeth and Jolian flew down to a small town in Guatemala called Poaquil. They met a small group of farmers, each working hard on their own small plot of land. There, they saw a huge problem. “Coffee farmers are born into some really horrible poverty conditions that are really hard to escape. There is a lot of suffering. A lot of times just being here in America, it’s very hard to imagine the world that so many people are born into and the level of poverty,” said Lisbeth.

Children in places like Poaquil, Guatemala don’t have the opportunity to go to school. “It’s a cycle; If you are born there, your parents will bring you to the coffee farm because they are paid per pound and they need the money for the family. Once the kids are 16, they barely know how to read or write. So they end up just staying at the farm working for pennies per pound because that is all they know. And the cycle begins again.”


Lisbeth and Jolian knew they had to do something. They didn’t want “likes” on a viral Facebook video only for people to go back to normal everyday life. They wanted to make a sustainable difference and contribute to change. So they brought back suitcases of coffee beans, raised right on the farm in Poaquil Guatemala and built relationships with those farmers and their families. “We roasted and sold the coffee right here in Lakeland” said Lisbeth. Now, they order 1,500 pounds of coffee every year from those farmers and pay them three times the market rate. The premiums they pay go directly to the farmer, bypassing corporations that pocket premiums and oppress farmers. In three short years, they have seen that small group of farmers grow from 10 members to 30 members.

Coffee production in these small towns like Poaquil drives the local economy. Ordering 1,500 pounds of coffee every year can change an entire community. These communities can now invest in more nutritious food, better schools, better healthcare, and a better future for their children. One of the conditions Lisbeth and Jolian has with the coffee farmers they buy from is that every single child has to go to school to get an education. These farmers are ecstatic to send their children to school, since they can make enough now to comfortably feed their family. Ethos believes this is key to creating a sustainable change and will contribute to breaking the poverty cycle.


Lisbeth and Jolian have a strong passion for fresh coffee made with excellence. They roast and ship the same day, something only a few roasters in Florida can boast. Every bag of coffee sold online is shipped within a few hours of roasting. At the Lakeland Downtown Farmers Market, they purposefully only make the amount of coffee they know they can sell, leaving no leftovers for the next day. When it comes to roasting the bean, Lisbeth and Jolian took us to their back room where they have high-tech machines that manage every technical detail of the roasting to insure the highest quality. Each batch of coffee is monitored closely, with every second of the process making a difference in the taste. Lisbeth is a food chemist, and spoke of many scientific processes that we couldn’t explain in a short blog post.


Partnerships and collaboration is the life-blood of Ethos. Everyone from the coffee farmers to the coffee shops that distribute their coffee are vital partnerships. They partner with other cooperatives and companies to buy ethical coffee from towns in Honduras, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Colombia, Mexico, Nicaragua, Peru, and Brazil. They partner with local cafes, restaurants, and coffee shops to help distribute the coffee. “We’re not saying we’re going to change the whole industry, but if we can make a difference in this small town in Guatemala, this small town in Colombia… I think it compounds. I think the biggest impact we have is the example we are setting; other people around us are seeing it. This kind of thinking, if it spreads, it could actually make a difference.”

Not every company is on board with the Ethos business model though, especially with profit on the line. While the giants in the coffee industry would like people to think of them as ethical and globally responsible, Lisbeth has other opinions. “People actually think that [large coffee chains] are fair trade and organic and all these things… Less than 1% of the volume that they buy is actually certified fair trade and organic. And, I always say fair trade and organic is the least you can do. It’s the minimum. We can do a lot better than that. It’s amazing all the things they do behind the scenes, but most people don’t really want to know.”

Ethos wishes that more coffee companies and roasters would copy their business model. While most coffee producers and consumers love a good story, it comes at a cost. “We will never be the cheapest coffee you can buy; the environmental & human costs are too high. Yet, we want to combine high quality, social impact, and environmental awareness into the freshest, all-around best coffee experience money can buy!"


Going forward, Ethos has just one message: “We are so fortunate. Not only do we have limitless opportunities for ourselves here in America, we also have the incredible ability to make a difference in someone else's life across the world.”



To celebrate our 3-year Anniversary! On Sunday, March 10, noon - 4 pm, we’ll have coffee & a (huge, custom-made) birthday cake at the roastery in Lakeland! We would LOVE to see YOU and have an opportunity to personally THANK YOU (and hug you… yes, I’ll definitely hug you!)

We’ll also celebrate with an extra coffee sample (one for you, one for a friend) with every single box we ship in March! Plus, we’re going to Guatemala next weekend… and bringing back some more surprises!!! Words can’t express how grateful we are to all of you (so we’re trying to feed you, hug you, caffeinate you, and bring you some cool stuff 😉)

Thank you for choosing to #BrewGreatness in the world!



Happy 2019! | This is YOUR year!

We hope you’re having a great start to YOUR year! These first days of the year have truly flown by us, yet we wanted to take a moment and give you an update on our plans for 2019!

Our main goal this year is to make it YOUR year - to find ways to do more, and give more to you - the people that we get to roast for! We want to make sure you not just fall in love with the coffee - but with our mission to create opportunities for small farmers and with our vision of a world where no child has to sacrifice school (for a life in the coffee fields) to help their parents feed their siblings - that is our dream*! We know we can’t do it alone, and that for us to achieve that dream, we must become coffee worth sharing!

This year, we want to make sure we give you an experience worth sharing - worth sharing based on a particular coffee you love or a new tasting note you just identified… worth sharing based on the incredible aroma you get from a fresh roast… but mostly worth sharing because you can give other coffee lovers the opportunity to make a positive (social, environmental, life-changing) impact through something as seemingly small as the cup (or cups) of coffee we drink every day! And perhaps also worth sharing because of the related (bigger) conversation about how the largest impact we collectively have in the world is all about the things we buy (or don’t buy!) - as every purchase is a “vote” (with our dollars) for the world we want to see.

So we want to begin the year with a request - if there’s anything you’d like to see from us this year… please share! (💌

We hope 2019 is YOUR year in every sense, and that it brings you the opportunity - and the courage - to pursue all your dreams,

Jolian & Lisbeth

* Yes, we’re big admirers of the work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr! Happy MLK Day!

PS. We just shared some photos and a video (on FB) from our Poaquil partners - they have some brand new coffee equipment thanks to YOU!

A last Thank You...

Greetings from Colombia! This last day of the year, surrounded by gorgeous coffee plants and landscapes*, we're reminded of the moment, just 3 short years ago, when Ethos was just a dream! We set out to build the company of our dreams, and feel that so far, we've succeeded beyond our dreams - as we never thought we would find such an amazing group of like-minded people who also believe they can make an impact!

So, this last day of the year, we just wanted to say thank you... for making Ethos possible... and for believing - and living - this dream with us! We hope 2019 brings you the opportunity to realize all your dreams!

From the bottom of our hearts,

Jolian & Lisbeth 

* Please check our Instagram - @ethosroasters, we have Colombia pics and videos we're not able to share as a blog post or in an email.


Today, as we celebrate Thanksgiving, our hearts and our minds fill with overwhelming gratitude. We’re so grateful for this journey, for all the love, for all the lessons, and for this amazing opportunity to make a difference. Above all, we’re grateful for you!

We’re especially grateful to you today because it’s now been years (years!) since some of you first learned about us - and order after order, you’ve kept us learning, growing, and making a difference! In our endless search for more impact, perhaps we’ve discontinued a few of your old favorites… and you’ve been open to try -and fall in love with- new favorites! Perhaps we’ve made a mistake in your order, and you’ve given us an opportunity to make it right… and many more chances to roast for you again! You’ve generously taking the time to write a review, follow us, post pictures, share one of our posts, recommend us to your friends, or email us to say how much you loved your coffee! All these things matter. All these have kept us going. All these have led us here. You truly are the fuel that powers all our coffee roasting!

Thank you - from the bottom of our hearts - for the opportunity to keep roasting for you. Thank you for choosing to #BrewGreatness in the world every single day. We hope this Thanksgiving overwhelms you with gratitude and happiness,

-Jolian & Lisbeth

PS. This Thanksgiving, we’re focusing on the “giving” part - so we’re including a 🎁on all orders this week. Plus, this weekend (Fri-Sun) we’ll run our first THANKS-GIVING COFFEE SPECIAL - you can send a bag of Ethos ☕️ to anyone in the US for just $10! Finally, we’ll be posting pics and videos of our Roastery Experience on IG & FB so can all join us in spirit! ❤︎

You're invited...

Fall is finally here! And we couldn’t be more excited about cooler weather, and of course, the upcoming Holiday season!!!

We’re planning our first “Roasting & Tasting Experience” on Nov 23 and 24 (yes, that’s the Friday and Saturday on Thanksgiving weekend), and are truly hoping that you join us if you can make it to Lakeland either of those days! You can sign up here (until Weds Nov 21), yet we’re keeping our sessions to a maximum of 10-12 people per session - so we can give you the best experience possible - and it is first-come, first-served… so please, please sign up early if you’d really like to join us!

We also have another surprise for you! Our new Red Swan Holiday Blend is almost ready to make its debut… and will be launching exactly a week before Thanksgiving, on Nov 15th! (Thanksgiving is our absolute favorite Holiday… so you may get an earlier blog/newsletter post next month 😉)

Thank you again so much for continuing to support us, and for each opportunity we get to roast for you, to continue to learn and get better for you, and for all the love we get every day on social media… we’re really having some fun there (particularly on Instagram). Please consider connecting with us, and sharing your awesome coffee pics and favorite methods! You truly inspire everything we do, so please keep the inspiration coming!

Super excited, grateful, and looking forward to seeing many of you at the roastery in a few weeks!

Jolian & Lisbeth


I almost can’t contain my excitement as I’m writing this… there’s so many great news to share with you!!!

Sept 29th is National Coffee Day and we’re celebrating this year in more ways than ever:

(1) We’ll be kicking-off our National Coffee Month Special - featuring our 3 award-winning coffees at the 2018 Golden Bean North America Roasting Competition last weekend!: Poaquil, Crema, and Yirgacheffe (winning Bronze on Milk-Based, Espresso, and Pour-Over categories respectively). It’ll be available Sept 29th - Oct 29th (subscribers, we’ll plan on including these on your boxes this month, unless you have specific requests). This was our first time participating in the competition, and we decided to send these 3 coffees to get some good feedback on our roasting profiles with the new R-15. Honestly, we’re still fine-tuning our profiles, and aiming for that elusive “perfect roast” (please know we welcome your feedback and thoughts… as YOU are are ones we’re roasting for!), so to have all 3 of our submissions be awarded medals is just incredible! We truly owe it to the support of all of you who have made this journey - and this growth - possible… we’re deeply grateful and we’ll never stop searching for the most impactful, great-in-every-way coffees and doing our best to bring them to you as fresh as they get, and at the best value possible - that’s a promise!

(2) We’ll be giving away THREE TICKETS to Tampa Bay’s Coffee and Art Festival. You’ll get to taste lots of coffees from different craft roasters in the area and attend various educational panels on different topics… ours is called “Fair-Trade & Beyond: The Opportunity to Change the World through Coffee” - should be fun! Yet, back to the giveaway - the first ticket is for a lucky coffee subscriber (first subscriber to read this and email us - gets it!), a second ticket is for the awesome people who have liked our Facebook page, and a third ticket is for those following us on Instagram (FB and IG contests will run all day Sept 29th, and is as easy as commenting on a post… so please, please, follow us and participate… in both if you’d like 😉) AND

(3) We’ll be sponsoring & giving back at the Take Heart 5k - the largest fundraising event supporting Take Heart Africa - our amazing non-profit partner that supports widows & orphans in Kenya!

Finally, I just wanted to say THANK YOU for all your support who is what continues to make this journey possible… and I really don’t think I’ll ever get tired of thanking you (or feel so grateful and connected to all of you, even if we haven’t met!)… because you’re really part of your journey now… and in the end, that’s what human GREATNESS is all about - not just about finding, but about pursuing & supporting a purpose beyond ourselves - one seeking to make the difference we want to see in the world!



PS. We’re working on some great new additions, specials, and gifts for you for the Holidays… but I’ll leave that for the next post 😉!

RE: In THE NEWS | Coffee drinkers live longer!

On our last 'Re: Summer Series', we wanted to cover a topic that seems to be perennially on the news... coffee & health. While there's a lot of information (and misinformation!) out there, the great news is that the latest (highly reputable, peer-reviewed) research seems to be on the side of coffee drinkers!

That's right. 'Coffee drinkers live longer' was the main conclusion of the most recent coffee study* in the latest issue of JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association). They followed a group of half a million people over 10 years and analyzed the relationship between coffee drinking habits and mortality, and found coffee drinkers (even those drinking over 8 cups a day!) died at a statistically-significant lower rate than those who didn't drink any coffee. This was also true for Decaf coffee drinkers, suggesting the non-caffeinated components in coffee are responsible for the effect (something that would make a lot of sense, if you consider that is mostly phytochemical antioxidants!). If you'd like to get into the details, here's the link to the study. And while the scientist in us is really excited... we must also point out that this was an observational study... which means we can not prove that drinking coffee will actually add a few years to your life... but we can always have fun trying! (and make a difference!)

Jolian & Lisbeth

PS. A few news of our own - we recently received a "cease-and-desist" letter from another Florida roaster who had apparently registered a Trademark for "Florida Cold Brew"... so we'll be temporarily out of a Cold Brew Blend offering (alternatively, we'll be more clearly identifying some great single-origins for Cold Brewing... i.e. Poaquil & Huehue!). On a more positive note, the new roaster has given us some amazing flavor profiles, and more flexibility to do lighter roasts... we're working on our first-ever Holiday Blend that will highlight this new capability (i.e. a mix of lighter-roasted and darker-roasted coffees to balance vibrant and bold flavors) - we would love to hear your NAME ideas!!!

Finally, on an even more positive note, we have some news from our Poaquil Co-Op! Coffee growers from the whole region are meeting next month, and they'll be sharing with them their "success story" with us!!! They also said they'll try to do a video message for all of you who have (and continue to make) this all possible! Stay tuned :)


*Loftfield E, Cornelis MC, Caporaso N, Yu K, Sinha R, Freedman N. Association of Coffee Drinking With Mortality by Genetic Variation in Caffeine Metabolism: Findings From the UK Biobank. JAMA Intern Med.2018;178(8):1086–1097. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2018.2425