Daniel Riou: Coffee Insurrection Hero Chapter #34

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Daniel Riou: Coffee Insurrection Hero Chapter #34

coffee shop 2023
1- Introduce yourself: who are you, where are you from, where do you work and what’s your job.

My name is Daniel Riou, I’m from Lisbon Portugal, I’ve been working in the coffee business since 2011. I have a degree in Marketing and Advertising but by working in the family company, I’ve always been interested and very close to every stage of the process.

2- When and why did coffee become important to you?

Coffee was already important for me without even being aware of its importance. Coffee roasting is our family business and before I got in love with the coffee world, I was already working on it helping the company and family since an early age.
 
3- Do you remember the first coffee you had that was more than “just a cup of coffee”?

The first time I got in touch with specialty coffee was back in 2014 after a trade show in UK. We started working in a new project where we would develop the brand and the roasting for a new coffee shop that wanted to use direct trade coffee’s and 100% arabica coffees. At this point we felt that the market for coffee in EU was changing (for the better) and we started learning, doing SCA courses, working directly with farmers and learning how to roast the coffee lighter and enhancing its natural characteristic’s… since then we have learned and improved so much, and we feel that the coffee business as never been so interesting as today.

4- What’s your favorite thing about going to work in the morning?
 
Mornings are not always fun for me, unless I’m leaving my daughter at school… Monday mornings are the worst. A good cup of coffee will help going through the week.
 
5- What’s your favorite brewing method and why?
 
I love the v60, it’s been my favorite for a while. I just think you get a brighter and cleaner coffee. I love the acidity of the coffee’s and I think this method favors it. Every morning I do a V60 and for me it’s the one where I can really understand the complexity of the coffee’s I’m drinking.
 
6- Which is the best coffee you ever tasted?
 
It’s hard to say, I’ve had so many good coffee’s… probably a Panamian geisha from Graciano Cruz. I’m a big fan of Ethiopian coffee’s, always been. But today you can find amazing coffees from any region. It’s crazy…

Buraca Coffee Roasters
 

7- Is there a country of origin that you tend to favor coffee from? Why?
 
Ethiopia. Just because of the history behind and the Ethiopians coffee profile. I think that Ethiopian coffees are naturally good. For me simple is good and that is what you get with Ethiopian coffees. There is no need for “anaerobic controlled fermentations” and crazy processes. If we talk about espresso, I will choose Brazilian coffees. I love a sweet, round and very balanced espresso coffee. And Brazil can offer that and much more.
 
8- Suggest us a roastery to check (not the one you working at/you use at work).
 
I’ve had the chance to visit the roastery and taste the coffees from in . They always have a good range of coffees and I love the brand. It was a big pleasure to see how they work and their roasting approach. If we want to go to a more “exclusive” approach, I recommend the micro roastery from Alexander Ruas from Sweden. They only source and roast coffees that are used in Barista or Brewers cup competitions, they have an amazing 100g subscription where you can taste the best coffee’s in the world from farms like @cafegranjalaesperanza, @ninetypluscoffee, @graciano.cruz and @geishavillage in Ethiopia.
 
Some of these lots are less than 10 kg and therefore are very rare and unique.
 
9- What’s the most important things you’ve learnt while working in the business?
 
I’m still learning.
 
10- How your work and the specialty coffee world are coping with Covid and the new challenges for hospitality?
 
It’s been very challenging, not easy, we feel that we will take a while to recover from this year and a half. However, the coffee business is growing, and people seek quality and transparency. We think that there are new opportunities for who, like us, want to “make coffee better”.
 
11- How do you see the specialty coffee scene in 10 years?
 
I think it will grow so much that you will get to a point like Australia where it’s just “coffee”. Specialty coffee will be the “new normal”…wouldn’t that be just great?!

12- Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
 
Hopefully doing what I do today… opening coffee shops for Buraca Coffee Roasters and developing private labels and projects for coffee professionals.
 
13- Any last word? Any tip or suggestion you wanna share with someone that want to start this path?

Don’t be lazy, aim to the stars and work with passion. Repeat the day after… never give up!

Daniel Riou


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