It began back in 2005 in the region of Pang Paek, Mae Hong Son province, Thailand. While exploring a local Lisu village we were gifted some natural process beans by one of the farmers. We experimented by roasting them in traditional ways; clay pots, woks suspended over open flames and cast iron pans. While this didn't produce the best cup it allowed us to profile the beans to achieve a greater understanding of Thai arabica. This was a humble beginning that taught us a lot about the complexity of coffee and the importance of quality equipment; which further motivated my father Dan Joseph to design and build our own custom roaster.
When coming up with a name for our brand we decided to go with Left Hand for a couple main reasons. First; going back to my childhood growing up in Left Hand Canyon, Boulder, CO, which was named after Chief Left Hand (Niwot) of the Arapaho tribe. Second; the name was inspired by the Left Hand being the hand of Alchemy, Wisdom and believed to be connected with creative minds. For us, coffee is the prime example of modern alchemy, in the sense of transforming a plant into one of the most sought after substances in the world. We focus on the farm practice, human connection and taking the noncommercial approach to business which in a sense makes us feel like the left hand population set apart from the masses.
The hobby turned into the business around 2012, at which point our focus was to support family run farms and produce the best coffee we could with what we had. We did discover the potential of high elevation coffee growing throughout northern Thailand, but the journey had just began. We understood there was a lot of work to be done from identifying the different varietals, educating ourselves and the farmers about processing and then developing complementary roasts. Almost ten years have passed and we are pleased to have witnessed the evolution, honored to have been part of it and excited for what is next to come.
All in all our goal is clear, support the local community, produce good coffee and share it with the world!
Founder & Head Roaster