BANGKOK, Dec 27 -- Tucked away in Bangkok’s Phromphong neighbourhood (affectionately known as Little Tokyo due to its Japanese expatriate community) is Ceresia Coffee Roasters, a family-owned café offering freshly roasted coffee beans from Africa, Central and South America.
This coffee family comprises Venezuelan sisters Marian and Lucia Aguilar, and Lucia’s Thai husband Garin Asavaroengchai (also Ceresia’s coffee roasting maestro).
Ceresia is a breath of fresh air in the local coffeehouse scene with its minimalist décor and focus on educating every customer on the beans behind every sip, be it a cappuccino or café au lait.
How did you get started in the coffee business?
For Marian and Lucia, our journey in the world of coffee started when our parents acquired a coffee farm in the Venezuelan Andes. It was a beautiful place surrounded by mountains, and only 10 minutes away by car from our home town Valera City in the Trujillo Estate.
Our father really shared his passion of coffee with us. This is the same passion he got from his parents and grandparents who used to produce coffee beans as well.
During our free time away from school, we used to go to the farm to help our father. We got involved in every single step. This included the coffee seeds germination (chapolas), the plantation of every chapolas in small bags, preparing them to be planted in the field, helping out in the coffee plantation through the year, as well as the coffee washing and drying processes.
Years later, during our university days, we operated a small coffee business where we were selling coffee beverages and beans from our farm. It was truly a great experience for us.
In 2009, we moved to London to continue with our studies. There we had the opportunity to work in the coffee industry as well as continuing our education in the London School of Coffee.
When we were in London, we met Garin who has shared our passion with coffee. Later, Garin and Lucia got married and moved to Bangkok together. We decided that this was a great opportunity to introduce a true specialty coffee shop in Thailand.
Why was it important for you to learn how to roast beans too?
When we were planning our café, we decided to start roasting beans on our own in order to offer the freshest coffee to our customers. We believe that after acquiring high quality coffee beans, we need to roast the coffee to match our standards.
At Ceresia Coffee Roasters, we are an open roasting house where customers can come and experience the roasting of our beans. We enjoy sharing with customers the steps of turning fresh coffee beans into enjoyable cups.
What is Ceresia’s take on coffee?
For us, we always present to customers what we most value, that is the origin of our coffees. We share information about the farmers, the exact location and the environment where our coffees come from. We also share with them how the coffee beans are grown, picked and processed in those particular farms and regions.
We are passionate about sharing every step and detail with our customers because we believe that the farmers have been working very hard to produce these quality coffees. This attention to detail is the reason behind such distinctive characters, aromas and flavours that we experience and enjoy with each cup.
What’s the best way to enjoy a coffee?
Every coffee that we have chosen is very special and very particular. Each coffee has its own origins, characters, aromas and flavours. As such, we love roasting and brewing each and every one of our coffees.
For us, the best way to enjoy these distinctive characters of each coffee is by brewing as a filter coffee. We are more than happy to produce samples for our customers to try before they make their purchases. For us, it is very important for our customers to know the origins and the flavours of the coffees first.
Why open a café in Bangkok’s Japanese quarter?
When we were planning our café, we wanted to open it in a multicultural area. After doing a lot of research visiting many potential areas, we have found this lovely spot! Around the café there are plenty of hotels and office buildings that bring both tourists and locals to the area. Our customers come from many nationalities – this makes it very interesting for us.
We wanted to provide convenience so people who are doing their shopping can drop by the café to buy some fresh coffee beans. We also have regulars who visit Ceresia before they go to their offices so they may the day with a delicious cup of coffee in their hands.
Ceresia Coffee Roasters
593/29-41 Sukhumvit Soi 33/1, Bangkok, Thailand
Open Tue-Sun 8am-6pm, closed Mondays