28 years ago today, a skinny, long haired Chicano from the South Valley of Albuquerque began a journey that would become a life's calling. I had just moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in California, where I was somewhat of a fish out of water (no green chile to be found). I found a home away from home at Peet's Coffee and Tea, and began a mentorship under the nation's most respected and influential coffee professionals. After a successful coffee roasting tenure at Peet's, I moved back to New Mexico to pursue my dream of owning my own roastery and sharing my knowledge and passion with coffee lovers in my home state.
And so, I introduce you to Cutbow Coffee Roastology. I still have lots to do before we open but couldn't have made it this far without so many teachers, confidants, critics, mentors, drinking buddies, advocates, and fellow coffee roasters to help me realize my dream. I would be remiss to not acknowledge them in some way or another. I will start with humble thanks.
First and foremost, my parents Pete and Mary Ellen Gallegos. Their loving guidance gave me the confidence to follow my heart, and taught that anything is possible, whether 5 or 55.
My entire family is a source of inspiration to me. From my dearly departed grandparents, Placida Gallegos and Zack & Eloisa Montoya, to my children Amadeo and Sabella Grace; my siblings Tony, Andy, and Trish who are my true north; my extended family of Gallegos, Montoya, Garcia, Juarros, Berged, Martinez, y Llamas. Each and every one of them brightens my life with a shining example of unconditional love and support.
In the brotherhood of coffee roasters, there is a common thread of aches and pains, chaff fires, early mornings, and the embarrassment of choking on a slurp at the cupping table. There is also the satisfaction of nailing a perfect roast that only another roaster can appreciate. To my compadres (which include a few comadres), a heartfelt thanks.
Eric Hashimoto - the zen master.
The awesome roasting crew at Peet's Coffee - Arturo (el más chingón), Rick (the rock), Monty (the young buck), Alan (the rockstar), Matthew (the roastar) Michael (the scribe), Rob (the thin white duke), Eliseo (el capitán), Elias (the future).
Doug Welsh, Phil Maloney, Sean Coutts and the rest of the Coffee Dept. - the
heartbeat of Peet's.
Peetniks at large: Brian Swift-Bernal, Katrina Van Winkle, Shelley Groves, Marlo Styles, Tom Weedman, Shawn Conway, Jim Bevilacqua, Joerg Petersen, Patrick Main, Ralph Blas, Kevin Costello, John Nicolini, Gary Claveria, Tony Citro, Big John Morrison, Eliot Jordan, Laurie Welstand, Angie Serna, Jessica Mitchell, Mark McDonald, Kasey Carmassi, Lisa Taylor, Kelly Neilson, Tangi Orlando, Ron Allen, 49er Pat, and Deidra the Creole Queen.
--Steve Ableski, Elisabel Castillo, Darren Barry, Yardgoat, Mark Villanueva, John Weaver, Rich Avela, Robert Myers, Raymond Sohnlein (RIP), Kristen and Tina, Tom Merz, Jake Sayles, Kamala Parks, Shirin Moyaad, Amie Bailey, David Proctor, Satu Maarja Smith, Amy Jo Diaz, Maureen Frances "MOFO" O'Conner, Brian Acosta, Tito Martinez, Richard Zielke, Debra Regur, Ted Krause, Ted Ellison, Suzanne & Jay Van Bemmel, Mike Hatch/My Catch, Judy Davis Leonor.
For selfless sharing of knowledge and resources:
Greg Flores at Espresso Fino
Cindy Moffitt at Prosum Roasters
Trish Abbin at CNM SBDC
Willem Boot and Marcus Young at Boot Coffee
Daniel Kearney at Allen Sigmon Real Estate Group
Sandy Hill and Sean Chavez at Studio Hill Design
Karl Larson and crew, especially Bad-Ass Bob
James Lewis and Loli Wiesner Bourg at General Design, Inc.
Michael Whitley at Alliance Service Network
Aaron at KD Service Group
Anthony and Vern at ARRK Enterprises
And my personal Mount Roastmore, without whom none of this is possible:
the inimitable Jim Reynolds
the visionary Jerry Baldwin
the legendary Alfred Peet
Ken Tabish for the Jimmy Santiago Baca books,
Marc, Barb, and Myles Marcotte,
and to Matt Thompson, Allen Davis, Ed Lueras, and John L. Green, my brothers from other mothers.
And finally, by my side at every step, my Sylvia.
I don't deserve, and still can't believe my privilege, to spend my life with the most loving, honest, patient, encouraging, and compassionate person ever to grace this earth. When I first met my wife, she was the prettiest girl in the 4th grade. I have watched in awe as her inner and outer beauty has grown with the passing of years, days, even seconds. Thank you for making me the happiest man in the world. You are still the prettiest girl in the room.
I think that about covers it. Please watch this space for updates on our buildout and follow us on social media. Now back to work...