Kike (as he is known to his friends – and Instagram followers! #kikecoffeeroaster) grew up in Guatemala City and discovered a taste for coffee at an early age. He fondly remembers his parents’ insistence on “real” coffee – not surprising since their home country produces the second highest volume in the world (after Colombia) of high-grade coffee, and holds top spot for the percentage of its crop classified as high quality. Having spent some time in Venezuela, he tried his first cappuccino – Venezuelan style, with cinnamon dusting on top of the foam – and fell in love. At 18, Kike started work in a coffee shop, learning the skills to become a barista. He began to investigate the roasting process, reading about the different methods and where the beans came from to create the wide variety of roasts and blends. Roasting quickly became his passion and Kike began roasting for Anacafé, and was responsible for ensuring the quality of the product. In 2014, Kike competed in the Guatemala National Cupping Championship. A few months later, he travelled to Melbourne, Australia to take part in the World Cup Tasters Championship. It was a fantastic experience, and he arrived in Bermuda in September 2014 on a high – and ready to roast.