10 Minutes With Casper Engel Rasmussen

Casper 2014 3

Casper Engel Rasmussen
Roastery and Quality Manager
The Coffee Collective
Copenhagen, Denmark.

What other coffee jobs have you had?

I’ve been in the coffee business for 12 years now. My first job in coffee was in a cafe back in my hometown, Silkeborg, called Cafe Evald. It’s kind of funny that they actually now serve our coffee. Here I worked for a couple of years before deciding to move to Copenhagen. At my first visit to Estate Coffee in Copenhagen, I met Klaus [one of the Coffee Collective’s owners, along with Peter, Linus, and Klaus]. He told me that they were looking to hire new staff and two months later I got a job there. After working there, I was offered to be involved in sales of Estate Coffee and training of their accounts. At Estate I also met Peter [one of the Coffee Collective’s four owners, along with Klaus, Casper, and Linus] and after a Christmas dinner, the three of us decided to start The Coffee Collective. A little later we brought in Linus, as well.

Casper has worked in every facet of coffee, from barista, to wholesale, to training, QC, and roasting.

Casper has worked in every facet of coffee, from barista, to wholesale, to training, QC, and roasting.

What’s your favorite part about working in coffee? 

So many great things about this industry. I have to list at least three things. I really enjoy when I go to origin to meet the producers, mainly in Ethiopia which is the country I get to go to the most. I love to do production cup pings, as this really is where we develop our roast profiles. And last but certainly not least, the one thing that I enjoy the most is probably when I am back in the bar serving and talking about coffee to our customers.

The owners of Denmark's celebrated specialty-coffee roaster, The Coffee Collective, which operates two cafes in addition to wholesaling and collaborating with micro brewers. From left: Linus, Klaus, Casper, and Peter.

The owners of Denmark’s celebrated specialty-coffee roaster, The Coffee Collective, which operates two cafes in addition to wholesaling and collaborating with micro brewers. From left: Linus, Klaus, Casper, and Peter.

Where do you ideally see yourself in 10 years? 

Ha! Ten years is a long time. When I look back to where I was 10 years ago, I could not have even dreamed about where I am today. In 10 years’ time I am probably and hopefully doing exactly what I am doing now… but I will have more kids and therefore be even more busy!

Casper and his wife are eagerly expecting their second child!

Casper and his wife are eagerly expecting their second child!

Who and what inspires you? 

It really inspires me to go travel. Also I find it really inspiring to meet people in other professions who are passionate about what they do. I can be brewing beer, cooking food, baking bread. A lot of us are really like-minded, and it’s a great joy to share ideas with others in kind of in the same position as yourself.

Being a business owner means helping with everything, including unloading shipments if green coffee.

Being a business owner means helping with everything, including unloading shipments if green coffee.

What are you drinking right now? 

Just had a cappuccino. Probably gonna drink me a beer from Evil Twin Brewing called Wet Dream in a while. It’s brewed with our roast of Kieni coffee from Kenya. Good stuff.

Casper won the World Cup Tasters Championship in 2007.

Casper won the World Cup Tasters Championship in 2008.

Crazy coffee experience you’d like to share? 

Starting your own company is pretty crazy. And when I won the World Cup Tasters Championship back in 2008. I really did not see that coming. Taste-wise, the coffee from La Esmeralda still leaves me scratching my head…

Though The Coffee Collective has grown to be one of the most revered and respected specialty roasters in the whole world, its four owners like to have fun as much as ever.

Though The Coffee Collective has grown to be one of the most revered and respected specialty roasters in the whole world, its four owners like to have fun as much as ever.

About the Author

Sarah

Sarah Allen is co-founder and editor of Barista Magazine, the international trade magazine for coffee professionals. A passionate advocate for baristas, quality, and the coffee community, Sarah has traveled widely to research stories, interact with readers, and present on a variety of topics affecting specialty coffee. She also loves animals, swimming, ice cream, and living in Portland, Oregon.