New customers ask us pretty often what our best sellers are since we have so many different products and they feel intimidated. We have so many different products because everyone has different personal tastes, but good sellers are definitely a good place to start:
Ethiopia. By far our best selling coffee is Ethiopia. We pick out the best of the best and are very very good at roasting them. We've visited Ethiopia in person and have a strong network of importers. When any of our importers get a really stellar coffee from Ethiopia they call us before anyone else because they know we want first dibs to buy it. Not only are we good at picking out the best of the best, but when we get them, we roast Ethiopian coffee as good as anyone in the USA, but we sell them at half their price. (Ethiopian coffee is VERY finicky and tricky and frustrating to roast!) They aren't for everyone. They are very light, fruity, almost tea like. We are passionate about them and drink them all day, and it's worth a try, but it's okay if it's not your favorite too. That's why we sell other coffees. (But eventually as you progress on your coffee journey I predict they will someday end up being your favorite.)
Guatemala: We pick out ones that are chocolatey and nutty. We roast them medium-dark...dark enough you can add cream and sugar if you want to, but still sweet and mellow enough to drink black. We sold 15,000 pounds of roasted Guatemala and another 6,000 pounds of unroasted Guatemala last year. It's hard to not like a good chocolatey Guatemala. We spend a good portion of our day sampling, roasting, and talking about Guatemalan coffee. 10 tons a year in and out the door.
Bear Blend: We sell it as Bear Blend, but it's really 100% Uganda. We started buying Uganda 10 years ago when it was really bad quality and just wanted to help out the farmers there. These days, they know what they are doing and it's delicious. Makes amazing cold brew. Makes awesome coffee. We put Uganda in all our blends. Arist, Breakfast, Espresso. French -- everything we add it to tastes better. We ran out for a couple months last year and there was nearly a mob with pitchforks and torches out in the parking lot.
Flavored coffee is only 5% of our sales, but we use really high quality beans, high quality flavorings, and take pride in the results.
Jamaican Paradise: 1,000 retail bags of Jamaica last year. Its best with a little bit of cream, and the caramel, nutty, kahlua flavoring helps you escape for a moment
Banana Nut Bread: This was a surprise hit. I've always loved banana flavored coffee, so this was a pet project for me, but I never expected it to be our 2nd best seller. Needless to say I poured my heart into it and it is delicious.
Pecan Sticky Roll: It's just such a natural pairing of flavor. Pecan pie with a cup of coffee. Drink it straight. Add cream. Add sweetener. It doesn't matter, it's good no matter how you drink it. It makes your kitchen smell great and tastes like dessert.
Decaf Rainy Day Blend: The blend of full bodied dark Decaf Sumatra with the chocolatey Decaf Guatemala is amazingly satisfying. The classiest, most expensive restaurant in Erie (the Cork) uses this blend and we get at least one call every week from customers wondering if they can buy it for themselves. Plus it is 100% water-process decaf!
Chamomile: You can get chamomile anywhere though. Ours is really high quality Egyptian chamomile and it is really well priced. But it just tastes like chamomile. Add a little honey and calm down and go to sleep.
Berry Basket: This blend of elderberries and other dried fruits and hibiscus is addictively good (and healthful!). Elderberries are native to this area, and we love making you this tea.
Strawberry Fields: I hate foods that are artificially flavored with strawberry -- so no worries -- our strawberry tea is as real as it gets. And most of our tea customers are drinking it.
Wild Orange: We copied this blend from Tazo Wild Sweet Orange, but why not? It's like a perfect tea blend. I make a big mug of it and drink it on my nightly walk. It's happiness in a mug.
Earl Grey (followed by Earl Grey Creme): Use a black tea base that isn't bitter, and then add natural flavoring to it so it is smooth and rich and mellow, and you have an Earl Grey that you want to drink every day. The Creme version also has Vanilla, which I like better but is less authentic. These two teas combined are 25% of our black tea sales. It's the best Earl Grey you'll ever find.
Darjeeling: This region of tea is a passion of mine. I handpick the one that I love the most each season, and apparently my tea customers agree with my tastes. It makes me happy to see how popular it is.
French Breakfast: Our blend of vanilla black tea with rose petals will make you wax poetic and be creatively inspired for the day. It's a work of art.
Sugar Cookie: We copied this blend from TeaSource Pistachio Shortbread, but they stopped making it, and it's a magical tea. Smells so good... tastes like a treat...we had so many customers asking us to stock it again; after they stopped making it, we had to figure out how to copy it, so we did, and it's spot on and has really helped us pick up new tea customers. I don't know why they stopped making it, but we love this combination of ingredients.
Jasmine Pearls: We've learned that Americans aren't especially fond of green tea. Jasmine Pearls seem to be the exception. It's such a treat, so much labor and care going into it, and so aromatic and approachable.
Ceremonial Matcha: I personally haven't yet developed a taste for matcha, but our supplier for this matcha is the real deal. We have found a strong following for this grade of matcha, selling it at about half the price of what it would normally sell at elsewhere in the states.
Sumatra Mandheling: It's just so easy and forgiving to roast. And it's so satisfying when you drink it -- full bodied,not bitter, rich and intense. Our home roasters picked up 8,000 pounds of it last year and we don't blame them.
Costa Rica La Minita: It's expensive, but you have to try it. There's a whole Discovery Channel special about the farm. A coffee table book about it. It's a myth and a legend and really exclusive and hard to get, but we are in the loop and get it every year and let anyone buy it off of us.
Uganda Bugisu: Maybe because of the price point. Or because you can roast it anywhere from really light to really dark and it tastes good anywhere in between. Or maybe just because it is great coffee. We sure do sell a lot of it.
Filters for loose tea: Basically empty tea bags. This is one of those products that everyone wants but doesn't even know it exists. For three cents you can make a cup of tea with no mess, no fuss. Put a scoop of tea in the empty tea filter, add hot water. When you are done, put the whole thing in your garbage or compost, and there's no clean up, no hassle. It makes drinking loose tea so convenient. Give it as a gift to your friends and they'll turn into daily tea drinkers.