HomeCoffeeIs Blue Bottle's collaboration with The Weeknd good for specialty espresso?

Is Blue Bottle’s collaboration with The Weeknd good for specialty espresso?


Superstar partnerships are nothing new to the espresso business. From actors and skilled athletes to musicians and social media influencers, superstar endorsements have been a key a part of espresso advertising way back to the early Nineteen Eighties.

Lately, in addition to extra public figures launching their very own espresso manufacturers, we’ve additionally seen increasingly more celebrities associate with specialty espresso firms.

Final week, as a part of a collaboration with musician The Weeknd, Blue Bottle Espresso introduced its new Samra Origins vary. In a press launch, the corporate stated Samra Origins is “a model and product line celebrating Ethiopian tradition and excellence in espresso”.

Contemplating Blue Bottle’s popularity as a pioneer within the business, there’s no doubting the standard of the product. Nonetheless, on the similar time, we do must ask: do partnerships like this add any worth to specialty espresso? Learn on to seek out out extra.

You may additionally like our article on why YouTube espresso manufacturers are gaining popularity.

Recording artist The Weeknd has introduced a new celebrity coffee brand.

How unique are these coffees?

On 9 Could 2023, Blue Bottle launched the primary espresso within the Samra Origins vary – an Exceedingly Uncommon Ethiopia Wolde Faye Koricha COE #7. Previous to its launch, these involved in attempting the espresso needed to be part of a ready listing.

The pure processed, gentle roast micro lot espresso is available for purchase for US $65 per 100g tin. For this worth, the espresso additionally comes with a collectible booklet that includes authentic Samra Origins paintings. 

Grown by Ethiopian producer Wolde Faye Koricha within the Oromia area, the 74110 selection ranked seventh on the 2022 Cup of Excellence Ethiopia competitors. Blue Bottle identifies flavour notes of rose, tangerine, and strawberry within the espresso, which acquired 89.78 factors ultimately 12 months’s CoE Ethiopia.

“Ethiopian espresso is really in a category of its personal and the nation holds a particular place inside our Blue Bottle group,” stated Karl Strovink, CEO of Blue Bottle Espresso, in a press launch. “I’m excited that we’re extending our dedication there with Samra Origins so we are able to proceed to share the very best of Ethiopian espresso and help our community of producers within the nation.”

To reply the query, the Exceedingly Uncommon Ethiopia Wolde Faye Koricha COE #7 espresso is definitely unique. Blue Bottle describes the primary Samra Origins launch as “our most premium espresso providing: a Cup of Excellence microlot with only one,700 orders obtainable”. 

In summer season 2023, nonetheless, Blue Bottle will probably be launching three Samra Origins blends. The corporate says these blends had been developed throughout cupping periods with Benjamin Brewer, Head of Innovation & High quality, in addition to The Weeknd and his mom – who’s Ethiopian. 

With a number of blends additionally obtainable within the vary, this definitely broadens the scope of shoppers involved in these coffees – in addition to having a spread of worth factors.

A cup of black coffee by Blue Bottle Coffee and The Weeknd.

Do superstar partnerships add worth to specialty espresso?

Since well-known US baseball participant Joe DiMaggio appeared in a TV business for the Mr. Espresso brewer in 1983, superstar endorsements have been distinguished within the espresso business.

Undoubtedly, some of the well-known model partnerships is US actor George Clooney and Nespresso. The Swiss espresso capsule producer employed Clooney to be the face of the model within the mid-2000s, and the actor starred in his first Nespresso TV commercial in 2006.

The marketing campaign was an simple success. Whereas Clooney has reportedly earned US $40 million from his model ambassador function, Nespresso gross sales catapulted within the years since – with an estimated 14 billion capsules produced yearly.

Different notable superstar partnerships in espresso embody:

The listing definitely goes on – together with celebrities and types corresponding to Iggy Pop and Stumptown Espresso Roasters, Taylor Swift and Starbucks, and Hugh Jackman’s Laughing Man Espresso model.

Useful or dangerous?

Past producing worth for espresso manufacturers (and the celebrities in query), whether or not these endorsements are useful to the espresso business or not is a matter of opinion.

On one hand, superstar endorsements will help extra folks change into involved in specialty espresso – finally supporting the business. Furthermore, partnering with espresso manufacturers will help celebrities increase consciousness of sure points and causes which can be necessary to them.

In the meantime, then again, there’s an argument that these endorsements commercialise specialty espresso – making it lose its “edge” and authenticity. Specialty espresso prides itself on high quality, sustainability, transparency, and traceability, however do these partnerships help the identical values? It’s a tough query to reply, and everybody has their very own perspective.

A give attention to Ethiopia

Going again to Blue Bottle’s Samra Origins vary, these coffees are completely sourced from Ethiopia. The explanation why is all the way down to The Weeknd’s (or Abel Tesfaye) cultural heritage and identification.

“Ethiopian tradition is a vital a part of my identification and I’m proud to work alongside the Blue Bottle Espresso workforce to shine a lightweight on Ethiopian traditions, values, and naturally, espresso,” The Weeknd stated in a press launch. “Rising up, I watched my mom carry out Buna Tetu, a standard Ethiopian espresso ceremony. This sensory expertise helped form my understanding of group and taught me to at all times honour my roots. 

“Samra Origins is a real ardour mission that I hope will encourage curiosity and encourage help for Ethiopia’s folks, whereas additionally spreading the heat and friendship so ingrained in Ethiopian tradition,” he stated.

Due to The Weeknd’s roots in Ethiopia, the Samra Origins vary already feels genuine and real. It’s up for debate how a lot involvement the musician had in sourcing and cupping the coffees, nevertheless it’s clear that he’s invested in supporting Ethiopia and its espresso sector.

Espresso for a trigger

Blue Bottle will donate to The Weeknd’s XO Humanitarian Fund, which helps the United Nations World Meals Programme. The fund particularly focuses on Ethiopia, the place greater than 20 million folks at the moment require pressing humanitarian meals help.

Bringing consideration to this trigger is undeniably necessary. And contemplating that espresso accounts for over 30% of Ethiopia’s exports, selling the top quality of the nation’s espresso will help to help its producers.

Furthermore, provided that The Weeknd is at the moment essentially the most listened to artist on Spotify with over 108 million month-to-month listeners, his capability to boost consciousness and drive specialty espresso consumption is large.

The Weeknd's celebrity coffee brand with Blue Bottle Coffee.

Espresso-celebrity partnerships aren’t going away anytime quickly. For each specialty espresso manufacturers and celebrities, collaborations and endorsements are helpful methods to generate income and improve client curiosity.

And whether or not you want them or not, there’s worth in these partnerships. Specialty espresso simply wants to ensure it retains its integrity – which is usually simpler stated than completed.

Loved this? Then learn our article on whether or not espresso & sports activities partnerships are gaining popularity.

Picture credit: Blue Bottle Espresso

Good Each day Grind

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