Domestically-grown coffee isn’t a big thing just yet, but a farm in San Marcos is endeavoring to become a pioneer in the field. Kyle Rosa, who moved to San Diego County from San Francisco after working in the tech industry, has spent the last two years cultivating his Bluetail Coffee Grove, on which four of its 50 acres have been planted with coffee trees.
Rosa estimates that there are approximately 20 small coffee growers in Orange County and San Diego, including famed singer-songwriter and Oceanside farmer Jason Mraz. He hopes to be the first to grow commercially, expanding his plantings and eventually creating an infrastructure for ecotourism that would allow visitors to pick, mill, and roast coffee their own coffee on the farm.
Blue Tail’s first big crop won’t be ready until Summer 2022, but Rosa says he’s already tasting a distinct flavor in the locally-grown coffee, likening it to the bright acidity associated with Ethiopian beans.
To showcase the coffee and celebrate another of his passions — wine — Rosa is also opening Breakers Coffee + Wine at Del Mar Highlands Town Center. Coming in next to the Sky Deck, the 1,600-square-foot coffee and wine bar is expected by Spring 2021 and will have patio seating and an outdoor to-go counter. Aiming to create a seamless experience between coffee and wine, with coffee and wine flights and education including coffee cupping classes, it will also serve a menu of small plates. Initially working with Saucelito Canyon for Breakers’ house wine, Rosa plans on making his own wine with other partners. And in addition to featuring Bluetail coffee, he will buy from other producers, telling Eater that part of his mission is to explore the discrepancies between what farms are paid and what big coffee companies earn.