Boarding Pass Coffee has opened its flagship roastery and tasting room just north of Atlanta featuring tasting events, coffee gifts, and a coffee club, at 13695 Highway 9 in Milton, Ga. Hours are Monday through Saturday 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
The new gourmet shop specialty-grade coffee beans from international destinations are roasted on-site in small batches. Coffee enthusiasts can learn about other cultures and document their taste travels by collecting “visa stamp” stickers in their very own Boarding Pass Coffee “passport.”
Entrepreneurs Murilo and Christine Santos named their gourmet coffee business as an homage to the more than 100 countries they have visited and began selling their specialty-grade coffee beans online and at Atlanta-area farmers markets and festivals in 2020.
Through exploring new coffee tastes, the couple offers a ticket to the world’s best flavors to share their love of international travel and encourage others to learn about different cultures via the common language of coffee. Beyond coffees, they offer in-store and virtual coffee tastings as well as a monthly coffee club, delivering a variety of impressive roasts to Georgia as well as direct to doorsteps across the United States.
The most popular roasts at Boarding Pass Coffee come from beans grown at Murilo’s family coffee farm in Brazil which is still run by his brother. All Brazilian roasts, currently five in total, are made from beans sourced directly from the family’s farm, Fazenda Sant’ana, outside of Sao Paulo. Both the farm and coffee beans are Rainforest Alliance and UTZ certified, with Organic certification underway and expected in 2023. In addition, a variety of other roasts come from Ethiopia, Uganda, Tanzania, Papua New Guinea, Honduras, Colombia and other far-flung countries.
Murilo and Christine met in Sao Paulo and began sharing their life adventure together in 2013. After speeding up steep and dusty roads on the back of a motorcycle, Christine met Murilo’s parents for the first time at the family coffee farm. The farm became a special place for the couple and they married at that exotic locale. Their wedding guests each took bags of specialty coffee home as wedding favors. These family and friends clamored for more of that rich and delicious roast, planting seeds for the Santoses to launch Boarding Pass Coffee.
While earning an Executive MBA at Georgia Tech, the idea to fresh roast his family’s coffee really started to percolate for Murilo. Right before graduation, he knew it was time to “chase his dream.” His coffee roots found fertile soil in Georgia and his classmates were happy to act as taste testers of Murilo’s various roasts, providing early direction for Boarding Pass Coffee.
New roasts and recent Boarding Pass Coffee best-sellers include:
- Monte Alegre: a popular light roast from Brazil that has single-handedly converted former dark-roast devotees to light roast fans
- Bela Vista: a dark espresso roast from Brazil that delivers a satisfying flavor without bitterness
- La Hondurena: a high quality coffee that comes from all-female coffee farmers in Honduras; a portion of sales go to the International Women’s Coffee Alliance (IWCA)
- Kilimanjaro: a unique roast made from peaberry coffee beans grown on the slopes of Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania
- Chasquis: a new roast from Peru made with organic beans
“The whole idea is for people to enjoy the experience,” Murilo said in a press release. “We name every roast after a unique and interesting place in the country where the beans originate. We want people to learn more about other cultures and travel destinations. Our goal is to not only offer really great coffee, but also provide our customers – who we call ‘coffee travelers’- a cultural experience too.”
Over the years, Murilo and Christine have racked up more than 100 countries combined on their personal passports. Murilo’s favorites include Turkey, Senegal and China; Christine prefers Croatia, Mt. Kilimanjaro and Indonesia, although Brazil remains her favorite because of the warmth of the people and where, not coincidentally, she met Murilo.
Today the Santos family, which now includes three daughters, enjoys hopping over to nearby Puerto Rico to get a dose of the Latin vibe. They plan to safari in Africa as a family and bucket list (and well-known coffee producing) countries of Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya are their priority destinations.
Boarding Pass Coffee is a supporter of IWCA, the International Women’s Coffee Alliance, and is a Georgia Grown company in addition to being minority-owned. Beyond 12-ounce and 2-pound bags of whole beans or ground coffee, customers can choose single-serve pods that are compatible with Keurig machines or single-serve pour-over pouches, both made on-site with their fresh roasted coffee. Boarding Pass Coffee’s monthly coffee club subscription begins at $15 and in-store coffee tastings begin at $20 per person.