Welcome back to A Better Table on the Sprudge Podcast Network, hosted by Umeko Motoyoshi.

In the latest episode of A Better Table, Umeko Motoyoshi interviews Carmel Laurino, the founder of Kalsada Coffee, a Manila-based company that processes, exports, and imports specialty coffee from the Philippines. In this show, Motoyoshi and Laurino talks about how Kalsada got its start, and dive into the wider Philippine specialty coffee scene, as well as Kalsada’s sustainability innovations.

Carmel Laurino’s coffee career began after discovering a photograph while researching the history of the Filipino diaspora at the University of Washington in Seattle. “I was kind of trying to make sense of these different ways of how Filipinos migrated or moved to the US,” Laurino explains, “when I was doing this research, I discovered this photo of Pike Place Market. These men had a stall, American men, and they were called the Filipino Coffee Company. This very distinct photograph where they had  a roasting machine, bags of coffee, even these brooms from the Northern part of the Philippines… I was like, ‘Whoa, what is this?'”

“My history and background as a Filipino American, but also living in the Northwest rolled into this one photograph,” says Laurino. “This is like, this aha moment for me. Sixty, seventy years before Starbucks, there was this company, there were these men selling coffee from where my parents grew up. I wanted to learn more about that.”

A Better Table is sponsored by Seattle Coffee Gear and Chobani.

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Be sure to check out past episodes including interviews with Bianka Alloyn And Sabreen Naimah, Chris McAuley, Cydni Patterson, Nick CastellanoWill Frith, Laetitia Mukandahiro, Emily Haddad, Adam JacksonBey, Kim Elena Ionescu, Alice Wong, Latasha Barr Lewis, Madeleine Longoria Garcia, and Camden Myer.

Check out all of the Sprudge Podcast Networks show here.

This episode of A Better Table is sponsored by Seattle Coffee Gear and Chobani.