Roasted by Mojo’s Auckland based Sales and Account Manager, Sam Baker

This May our Roaster in Residence is Mojo Coffee Roasters and we caught up with Sam Baker from Roasted by Mojo.  Sam is their Account Manager extraordinaire with a super varied routine which includes coffee training, technical work, prospecting new business, consulting on new openings, photography, social media advising and, as every coffee account manager knows, part time barista cover!  He’s also a big fan of drinking coffee and was stoked to share more about what we’ll be drinking this month.






What coffee will we be drinking this month?

This is our current single origin coffee which is from the Sao Jose farm in Minas Gerais, Brazil.

One of the great things we do at Mojo is run rotating single origin espresso and filter options. Our talented green bean buyers are always on the hunt for new and exciting coffees to offer to our customers and wholesale accounts. We change this every couple of months which keeps things fresh and interesting for us and our customers. It also helps us showcase the many different flavours of coffee that are out there.

What are the tasting notes?

It’s a delicious creamy, full-bodied coffee with notes of hazelnut and vanilla. Perfect to combine with any milk and also super delicious as a black coffee. I really think this is a great coffee for home baristas.


What’s the recommended recipe?

Dose:                                     20 g

Extraction Time:                30 sec

Yeild:                                     34 g


Where do you source coffee from?

For this single origin and our other coffee out of Brazil we have been working with Guaxupe Exportadors for almost a decade now. They offer a specialised services and a team prepared to guide its partners with a strong commitment to bring the producer closer to the international market, always respecting the social, environmental and commercial norms.

Having had Mojo staff members travel to Brazil in the past and visited a number of the farms they manage/own we trust their ethical abilities and quality assurances. They carry a multitude of certifications including UTZ which we have found suits coffee from this particular region.

We are very conscious on both sustainable and ethical practises from seed to cup.  We find that travelling to origin, working directly with companies like this and meeting the farmers they use is a great way to ensure this.


Where’s your favourite origin and why?

It’s so hard to choose one. I do love trying as many different single origins as possible, as each of them have such different flavours and characteristics. Again, the great thing about the Mojo rotating single origin is there’s always something new and interesting on the horizon. We had a really high scoring Burundian coffee on a few months back from the Munkaze and Kirimbi Washing Stations which was delicious.


How did Mojo get started?

Mojo Coffee was started in Wellington by Steve and Julie Gianoutsos back in 1993 and has grown from a small site on Wakefield St to multiple cafes both nationally and internationally. Steve originally learnt to roast coffee from his dad, Lambros, who still works with us today, which is pretty cool.

As the brand and company grew, Mojo developed a niche in the corporate neighbourhoods providing fast, efficient service, always making sure quality was paramount. We pride ourselves on owning and operating all of our cafes and delivering on a great experience for all who visit us each day. Over the years we have also expanded into nationwide wholesale supply for independent cafes through our Roasted By Mojo brand.



Can you tell us about the relationship between Mojo and Roasted by Mojo?

Most people probably know us predominantly for our own Mojo cafes located in both Wellington and Auckland. We have worked really hard over the past 15 years to roast really good quality specialty coffee and operate great cafes, which has always been our core business.

With Roasted By Mojo, we use all the same great coffee, machinery and expertise to provide wholesale supply and service to independent cafes. We want to share not just our delicious coffee, but also all the knowledge we have from setting up and running our own cafes with other people in the industry. I think we have a slightly different, and maybe a more realistic view, on what it takes to run a café due to the fact we operate so many of them ourselves. We work more like a partner than a supplier – taking a real interest in our customer’s business and working with them to serve the very best coffee, using the very best techniques, machinery and products.

The Roasted By Mojo side of the business has been gaining traction and we now have account managers based in Auckland, Tauranga, Wellington and Christchurch so we can service the whole country. We want people to be able to experience the joy of Mojo coffee no matter where in the country they are.



What’s your go to brew method?

It’s hard to beat a well-made espresso for me. I have an espresso machine at home so that’s what I mostly drink.  I do love filter coffee, too, and will definitely have one if it’s on offer.


What’s your favourite La Marzocco machine to work on?

We deal with a range of espresso machines at Mojo but it’s pretty hard to go past the Linea PB. It’s just such an iconic espresso machine for me and an absolute workhorse.


Any unexpected combinations of things that go really well with coffee?

Fried chicken. Fried chicken goes well with anything.


Does Mojo offer coffee education for the home barista?

Yeah, it’s a big one for us. We run a range of coffee courses for home baristas both here in Auckland and Wellington with our talented team of coffee trainers. If you’ve invested in a beautiful new La Marzocco espresso machine for home, we recommend making the time to learn how to get the best out of it.  Check out our website for more details if you’re interested.



Any tips for a home barista brewing espresso?

I have an espresso machine at home and love it.  I love having people around and them being able to have a really delicious espresso coffee experience in my home.

The key tips for me would be,

– As I’ve already mentioned, do a barista training course. It’s a must.

– Also, get a decent grinder and learn how to use it properly. Understanding the relationship between your grind setting and how that effects the flow and taste of the coffee is the most important thing.

– Finally, buy fresh coffee and make sure you keep your machine clean.


I would also recommend trying a bunch of different coffees. There are so many amazing roasters out there with some delicious options, so try as much as you can. It’s really fun to try new coffees and see what flavour profiles and coffee origins you prefer – all from the comfort of your own kitchen!