Had a little bit of a delayed start during our interview with Ian of Deadstock Coffee, however, once he was able to take the mic, the conversation came about so naturally. We chatted for about quadruple the normal time of a RR IGTV.
Deadstock Coffee is based in Portland, OR. Prior to our interview, a lot of protesting was consistently taking place especially in Portland. Ian and I started our chat speaking briefly about that and making sure him and the shop are safe and sound. Ian assured us that they were all good and had a really positive outlook regarding the state of the world as a whole.
My first real question for Ian was how the heck he came up with the name Deadstock Coffee and to give us a little more information about the coffees he had featured, Fresh Prince and Nenemar. The name Deadstock is basically a nod to sneakerheads/collectors in general. Ian’s background (and a big chunk of his heart) before coffee is being involved in the footwear industry. He worked at Nike for 10 years and really appreciated the people he encountered and the fact that it felt like its own community. He changed careers because he wanted to be even more involved with working within a community. Hence, Deadstock, where he still collects a bunch of shoes.
He went on to discuss Nenemar, which was named with help from the community after two Brazilian athletes which is also where the beans are from. Nenemar is a single-origin, but is roasted in two different ways and then blended back together. This gives the coffee a light and darker profile, leaving it absolutely delicious to drink. Next up, Fresh Prince. This was Deadstock’s first Ethiopian that they put out. This coffee tends to always be very bright and crisp, so if you enjoy fruity cereal milk, you’ll enjoy this coffee. Ian knew it had to have Fresh in the name. Tying Will Smith into that was pretty obvious. I thought maybe the name came from the fact that The Fresh Prince of Bel Air is some of Will Smith’s finest acting. Ian didn’t disagree, but dropped that he also loves I Am Legend. Two very different things, but equally brilliant, I’d say.
After our nostalgic discussion about one of the greatest sitcoms of all time, I had to know what Ian’s favorite bean is (besides coffee beans, obviously). He thought long and hard and couldn’t pick between two: refried beans and white navy beans. His mother makes pies for the shop and the white navy bean is included in one traditional to Muslim culture called a bean pie. Who knows if it’s good any other way, but it’s bomb enough in that pie to eat it like that all the time.
Next, what would this guy be roasting if it wasn’t coffee beans? Easy one, the answer was chicken. Slow and low, baby. We both came to the conclusion that we could never cook that way, but respect to all those who can because you’re clearly doing something right.
Last, but most definitely not least was the ol’ favorite mug question. We ALL have one, let’s be real. Ian was VERY prepared and flashed the mug immediately when I asked. It’s a mug he got in Japan from our homies at COFFEE SUPREME. It’s relatively small and obviously adorable, and says, MUGS NOT DRUGS across the entire cup. Ian then went off about his newfound love for MF oat m*lk. He made me blush and giggle a whole lot because of how stoked he was.
Ian continued the IGTV by answering some much anticipated questions from our viewers. He mentioned he’d be down to open up shop somewhere in the UK (hit him up before someone else does), deemed Coffeehall as his favorite LA shop and even shared a lovely story about taking a photograph with a stranger’s dog at a coffee fest in Japan! Apparently that photo helped seal the deal with Deadstock using Godzilla licensing. Who else can share a story like that?
Ian wrapped up discussing the Portland coffee community scene and dug more into how Deadstock really started. The goal was for it to be more of a DIY art space which started in 2015, but quickly turned around to be the extremely successful coffeeshop it is today. Ian gained respect by completely diving into and being extremely involved in the community in general. I couldn’t help but finishing our little interview by asking what his favorite sneaker is that he owns. HE WAS 100% READY FOR THIS QUESTION. It’s a Reebok something. Iverson’s first shoe. Blah blah blah.