A Trip to Panama with Brash Coffee

A quick perusal of Brash Coffee’s Instagram feed will not only have you craving a cup of coffee, but also a trip to South America, or the American South. Brash is the brainchild of 33-year-old Matt Ludwikowski, who says in 2011 he traveled to El Salvador, where he was struck by the inequities farmers faced in trying to get their coffees to market. Ludwikowski decided to do something about it, and a year later, he had built a coffee mill in a remote village in El Salvador called La Laguneta. “The village has a long tradition of coffee, but no one there had ever processed coffee,” says Ludwikowski. “I found several farmers willing to work with me to produce an amazing coffee and share their coffee heritage with the world for the first time. Since then I’ve been importing coffee from Central and South America and only buy from farmers I know and farms I’ve visited.”

In 2012, Brash started roasting coffee at 1000 Faces Coffee in Athens, Georgia, and in early 2014, Ludwikowski and his partners, Chris Mcleod and Allen Graber, opened their first retail location in Chattanooga, Tennessee, completing their farm-to-cup mission. Last fall, the trio opened a second retail location in Atlanta, and the next phase will potentially include opening a roastery in Atlanta.

Scroll through the gallery above to check out images from Brash’s travels sourcing coffee in Panama, and follow along on Instagram for more.