October 26, 2020
While their house espresso blend “DarkSide of the MoonGoat” is a pun on the Pink Floyd classic that brings a smile to our faces, we think the future of MoonGoat is very bright! MoonGoat roasters is a local favorite, out of Costa Mesa, California. They’re one of our first and best partners, and just all around good people. They have been roasting coffee for restaurants and catering events for years before opening their flagship cafe. Now, they are celebrating the recent opening of their second location in Garden Grove, CA. We recently visited their first location as guests to peak into their roasting process and to enjoy their latest coffees.
So what’s with the name? Why “MoonGoat?” Well, legend has it that goat herders in Africa were amongst the first to discover coffee after they saw their goats nibbling on the seeds of a local bush and becoming energized. They ate the seeds themselves and discovered the effects of caffeine. The ‘Moon’ part comes in because moongoat isn't a regular Cafe. It’s a cool Cafe. They’re open late into the evening when the moon is out!
MoonGoat continues the American tradition of elevating one’s craft. In coffee, they push boundaries; ownership trusts and empowers its roasters to wrestle with new flavors. We met with their lead roaster who was grateful for the opportunity to start roasting coffee when she did--without a full resume or the polished flavor vocabulary. She had a desire to learn and MoonGoat honored that. The coffee here is incredible, objectively original, with flavors that are just plain fun.
In speaking with the roaster, we found an underlying set of shared values: trust and mutual respect for employees, customers, and the local community. They listen to the ideas of any barista in the shop. If they have an idea for a new flavor, brewing method, syrup, or drink concoction, they will make it, add it to the menu, and serve it with enthusiasm! MoonGoat’s founders believe that everyone should serve products that they are excited about & proud to share. These are core values that we at NO DECAF ALLOWED celebrate and look for from our partner roasters, that we learn from and honor in our partner-mentor relationships.
MoonGoat serves specialty coffee from a transparent supply chain, where farmers work for livable wages, and beans are imported from very specific plots of soil, harvested & prepared, and finally roasted & served at their cafes. The cherries go through a wash process or a natural drying process to remove the pulp and expose the “green” seed that is eventually roasted. The way processing is set up can be very different between coffee growing regions and can determine how consistent an imported bag of “green” seeds is.
If you’re passing through Southern California, we invite you to visit one of their locations and deepen your relationship with this very special seed. Bring a friend, sit at the bar, watch the roasters produce speciality coffee, ask questions, and enjoy. Specialty coffee is having its moment and you are invited to take part.