Sueños Coffee is a coffee subscription service that delivers beans by female roasters making positive change.
BY KATRINA YENTCH
BARISTA MAGAZINE ONLINE
Photos courtesy of Sueños Coffee
The boost in home coffee drinking during pandemic years has resulted in a ton of specialized coffee subscription companies. It’s easier than ever to find a coffee service that works for your taste preferences, and to make positive change with your choices—Sueños Coffee is doing just that.
Meet Sueños Coffee: A Female-Owned & Supported Coffee Subscription
The business launched in the fall of 2021 as a subscription service providing roasted coffee from female micro-roasters who are giving back to their communities. It’s a passion project by education professional-turned-coffee entrepreneur Jiselle O’Neal, whose biggest inspiration for Sueños came out of family memories growing up. “There are no greater memories than the ones I shared with my grandmother (as early as 7) drinking a cafecito and buttered crackers while listening to her stories about growing up in Puerto Rico,“ shares Jiselle. “This was a tradition we shared together up until her passing four years ago, and one I will always cherish!“ Jiselle also credits the daily coffee she “makes“ with her toddlers for helping her start Sueños.
How It Works
A big reason why Jiselle pursued this kind of business was for the simplicity it could bring to others. “As a mom who looks for ways to put as many things on autopilot as possible so that I can free up time, a coffee subscription seemed like an amazing model,“ she explains. The style of the subscription is straightforward, allowing the user to try out a lot of different coffees roasted by female brands. Simply choose from light, medium, or dark roasts, along with an optional grind size, and a frequency of every two, four, or six weeks. For those who aren’t ready to commit to a subscription just yet, they can also start off with a two-bag bundle of the same preferences.
A Coffee Subscription Supporting Change Makers
Although Sueños just started in September, the roster is packed with roasters doing good things. The current lineup includes Little Waves Coffee, Cafecita, Kahawa 1893, and Cute Coffee. When it came to selecting partners to work with, Jiselle was focused on on-boarding brands that aligned with her values. “I knew I wanted to partner with women who were not only providing quality coffee, but who were really invested in the social impact of the coffee industry as a whole,“ she explains, “who were intentional about their relationships with farmers and other marginalized groups in the supply chain, and were also passionate about how they poured back into their communities.“ So far, Jiselle’s expectations have been wildly surpassed. “One of the most rewarding things has been the feedback I’ve received from some of the women I’ve partnered with, that feel like they’re seen, and like this is a space they’re truly welcomed in, and the relationships I’ve grown to have with each of them.“
With Warm Welcome
As a newer member of the coffee industry, Jiselle also feels incredibly welcomed by the community. After researching everything she could about coffee history and production, she also competed in the Glitter Cat DiGi2TiON, where she got coffee brewing experience in palate development, cupping, and more. “I will admit I was nervous to start this as someone who didn’t have professional coffee experience, but the community I’ve met since launching has been so supportive and welcoming!“ she says.
Sueños Coffee is a coffee subscription that not only supports other female businesses, but also female nonprofits. A portion of proceeds quarterly go to DMV-local and national organizations that support youth in underserved communities. Their first set of donations went to FAIR Girls, which provides intervention and holistic care to female survivors of human trafficking.
At Sueños Coffee, Jiselle likes to say that dreams are brewing. It’s where sueños comes from (the word means “dreams“ in Spanish, and what inspires countless other women working in coffee. “I look forward to being able to partner with more roasters and continue to amplify women in this space!“ she says. “Overall the goal is to create a space where those who have traditionally felt unseen or un-welcomed in specialty coffee, usually women and traditionally marginalized people, can feel and be seen with Sueños.“