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Ryan Morfin:

Welcome to season two of Non-Beta Alpha. I’m Ryan Morfin. On today’s episode, we have Josh Bridges, CEO and founder of Good Dudes Coffee, teaching us what it means to be a good dude, and what an excellent cup of coffee looks like. This is Non-Beta Alpha. Josh, welcome to the show. Thanks for coming on.

Josh Bridges:

Hey, thanks for having me. I really appreciate it. Excited to be on.

Ryan Morfin:

You’re the founder of Good Dudes Coffee. If you could, just give us a little bit of background of who you are and where you’re coming from. We’d love to jump into your product and what’s going on in the coffee industry.

Josh Bridges:

Yeah. I am Josh Bridges. I’m a former Navy SEAL. I am a six time CrossFit games athlete, father of two boys and proud owner of Good Dudes Coffee. That’s basically my little backstory.

Ryan Morfin:

Yeah. Where are you from? Where’d you grow up?

Josh Bridges:

I grew up in St. Louis, Missouri, just outside of St. Louis in the suburbs of St. Charles, Missouri. I was there until I joined the Navy in 2007, and then been in San Diego ever since.

Ryan Morfin:

Got it. Your time in the Navy, I’m sure you met some good dudes. Maybe tell me a little bit about your experience during your time at Naval special warfare.

Josh Bridges:

Yeah. I was at SEAL team three for two platoons. I ended up actually getting to do three deployments. The first one was directly out of SEAL training, which is SQT, SEAL Qualification Training, the second phase of becoming a Navy SEAL. I got to go on a deployment directly after I graduated. Chris Kyle was actually my first LPO, so that was really cool, and then did two more deployments. First two deployments were to Iraq, and my third and final deployment was to Afghanistan. After that deployment, I went on and I became an instructor for three years at the training detachment before I got out.

Ryan Morfin:

Got it. You’re into these ultra marathons and these high end performance races. Where did you pick that up, and how did you get into that?

Josh Bridges:

Well, I wouldn’t say I’m into ultra marathons or anything like that. CrossFit’s a little different. It’s more functional fitness style working out. You can do ultra races if you need to, but it’s not something I particularly do. I just got… [crosstalk 00:03:07]

Ryan Morfin:

Got it. You do a lot of CrossFit and you’ve actually sponsored by Nike. Tell me a little bit about that.

Josh Bridges:

Yeah. I got into CrossFit in 2005 a long time ago just to basically get in shape for becoming a Navy SEAL. A buddy of mine told me. He’s like, “Hey, I’m going to go try to be a Navy SEAL and this is what some of these guys do to get in shape for it. It’s called CrossFit.” I was like, “Oh, that sounds pretty cool.” I gave it a shot. I wrestled in college, and so basically after college I stopped working out, got a little out of shape. I was a loan officer in the mortgage industry for a few years, and so this guy was like, “Hey, I’m going to go do this. You want to give it a shot with me?” and I said, “Sure.”

Josh Bridges:

CrossFit’s really changed my life to be honest. The transition from wrestling into CrossFit was really simple or really easy, because it’s short intervals and it has a competitive nature to it because it’s always do this workout as fast as you can or do as many reps as you can at a certain amount of time. I fell in love with it, I loved it and then used it to train to get ready for my military training. Then at a certain point while I was in the military, they started a sport out of it, the sport of CrossFit, and I just felt like I was competitive enough and I had time where I could participate in some of the competitions while I was in. It’s been a crazy ride ever since. I took second in the worldwide games which is basically our super bowl in my first year in 2011, and picked up some great sponsors. Nike’s one of them, Rogue Fitness, a lot of great sponsors that have treated me well and just catapulted my life in a different direction than I ever thought it would be.

Ryan Morfin:

Quick question then. Who works out harder? Is it Jocko or David Goggins? Do you have any opinion on that? Or is it you?

Josh Bridges:

I would say me, but no, I don’t know. I don’t know David very well. I’ve never met him. I know Jocko. Jocko puts out. Jocko’s awesome. I love that guy.

Ryan Morfin:

Yeah. A lot of our viewers follow him on Instagram. Hopefully, he’ll be following you too. I didn’t know you were a wrestler in college. Where’d you wrestle?

Josh Bridges:

I wrestled at a small NAI school in St. Charles, Missouri, Lindenwood University.

Ryan Morfin:

That’s a great sport. Do you think that prepared you properly for SEAL training?

Josh Bridges:

I tell people this all the time, that I thought college wrestling was more physically demanding to me personally… more physically demanding than buds or basic underwater demolition SEAL training, the SEAL training. It might have been the mindset that I would have though. When you’re going right out of high school into college, you’re not prepared and you think you know everything. You just have a different mindset. So it might’ve been, but college wrestling was one of the hardest things physically I’ve ever done. The practices were grueling. I definitely think that that had a lot to do with how it changed my mindset and prepared myself mentally for what the military had to throw at me.

Ryan Morfin:

Is there anything that you do specially for getting ready for a CrossFit competition, like drink a lot of coffee or anything like that?

Josh Bridges:

I drink coffee before my events. I don’t drink a lot of it. I do drink some. I try to hydrate. I definitely clean up my nutrition, eat a little cleaner. I try to stay away from sugary foods, keep anything that causes inflammation out. That’s what I try to do. I do a lot of stuff for recovery. I was a big proponent of recovery, and I think that was why. One of the main reasons why I lasted so long in the sport of CrossFit is because I just took recovery really serious.

Ryan Morfin:

Well, so you spent your time, and thank you for your service to our country, you spent your time in the teams and you got out. Tell me a little bit about the founding of Good Dudes Coffee.

Josh Bridges:

Yeah. Good Dudes Coffee, it was me and two buddies. We were in a barn really. We’d just finished working out, and we started talking about doing these training camps. We were basically going to go around, and we were going to train with people and let people come train with us, which we did for a little bit, and then we had this brand, we called it Good Dudes. What the meaning behind Good Dudes is, in the military, you want to be a good dude. You don’t want to be a nice guy. Most people are nice guys, right? Nice guy is your neighbor, but a good dude is someone you want to go to war with. So we came up with the name Good Dudes and just ran with it.

Josh Bridges:

I had always had a passion for coffee. I’ve always wanted to start a coffee company, and so I thought the name was great, I loved the brand, and so that was really where Good Dudes Coffee really came from. The funny thing was how I got into coffee was, I thought there was this coffee sore and I was buying all these specialty coffees from different websites in Iraq. I’m in Iraq on my second deployment and I’m ordering some coffee to be sent out. I go to this website and I order a couple of hundred dollars worth of coffee beans. When it showed up, it was unroasted. I didn’t realize that when it said green next to the name of the coffee that I was buying, it meant unroasted coffee. When you get unroasted coffee beans, it has a greenish tint to it.

Josh Bridges:

I had $200 worth of unroasted coffee beans, and I decided… what do you do with it? So I went and bought a roaster and had it sent out to Iraq, and started roasting coffee in Iraq. That was really where the passion started.

Ryan Morfin:

The Iraqis don’t do too much coffee. They’re more tea drinkers, I think. Did you have any supplies? There were no coffee roasters and Amazon there, so did you guys just make your own equipment to roast the coffee out of access equipment you had in the base?

Josh Bridges:

No. I ordered one offline. I found a company that shipped out. It took a few weeks to get there. It basically looked like a popcorn popper. It was an air roaster. Very small, very generic, very at home type of roaster. You can only do very small amounts like quarter pounds at a time, but it was fun. I enjoyed it. Just playing around and messing with it, and trying different routes, how long to roast it and all that kind of stuff. I had to look up how to do it, how long to roast it, because I had no idea how to do any of that stuff, so I started watching YouTube videos like everyone else.

Ryan Morfin:

How long does it take to roast coffee? Does it depend on the type of coffee?

Josh Bridges:

Well, it depends on the type of coffee that you want. It depends on the roaster that you have. On the sample roaster I use now, it takes about six seven minutes total to roast about 50 grams of coffee. When you’re going into more of a big style, five to 10 to 15 pound roaster, it’s going to take more upwards of about 20 minutes probably. Maybe 15 to 20 minutes to roast that amount of coffee at a time. It just all depends. Then it depends on if you want to go darker roast, lighter roast, all that kind of stuff plays into it.

Ryan Morfin:

Obviously, lighter’s less time in the roaster, darker’s more.

Josh Bridges:

Exactly. What you want to realize is a lot of people… one of the questions that you always get asked or I always ask, what kind of coffee do you like? It’s always, “I like strong coffee.” Strong is that famous where everyone wants to use strong, and I understand it. But for me, when you say strong coffee, you have to clarify what you mean by that. Do you like strong flavor or do you like high amounts of caffeine in your coffee? A lot of people don’t realize this, but dark roasted coffee has less caffeine content than a light roasted coffee, because you’re actually roasting out the caffeine as you roast it longer.

Ryan Morfin:

Interesting. Literally the lighter roasted coffees, if you’re looking for that pop in the morning, will give you more caffeine.

Josh Bridges:

Exactly. That’s going to give you that caffeine uptick that you’re looking for.

Ryan Morfin:

Pretty much everybody that I know and do business with are avid consumers of coffee. A lot of people still go to that mermaid place where they pick up all sorts of public health diseases. Question for you is, what can consumers do? Go online and go do a sampling of different bags of coffee? What would your advice be to consumers today in the Corona virus environment to research or experiment with new coffees?

Josh Bridges:

Yeah, for sure. There’s so many different coffee brands out there, and I obviously love our coffee at Good Dudes Coffee. I personally had selected all of them and approved them. They’re coffees that I would drink, but there’s a lot of different coffees out there. There’s actually some really cool websites that will… you don’t even know what coffee you’re going to get. They’ll go around to other coffee companies and send you different brands from out the country. I have no affiliation with this company whatsoever, I just think it’s a really cool idea. It’s called Trade Coffee. I think there’s a few of them out there. That’s just the first one that I’ve found. Go out there experiment. Try light roast, try dark roast, try different country origins.

Josh Bridges:

The thing that you want to stay away from is blends. Typically, when you’re getting blends, what you’re getting is a bunch of really crappy coffee with a little bit of good coffee sprinkled in. Why that is, is because obviously your margins are better so people can make more money with it. When you go with single origins, you might pay a little higher price for that coffee, but it’s because the flavor is going to be a lot better. Then once you find certain types of coffee, you realize, “Okay, maybe you like the Ethiopian’s or the Kenyan’s, or maybe you like South American style coffees. The coffees from Brazil, or Columbia, or Peru, there’s Panama’s out there.

Josh Bridges:

Then you have to look at processes. This is a lot of information and probably more than people need to know, but there’s a different way that the coffee cherry is processed once it’s picked off the tree called washed and then natural. If you like really bright, acidic, you’re going to get almost fruity flavors, you want to go with those natural processes. What they do is they pick the cherry, they let that coffee bean dry with the cherry still attached to the bean which is going to change the flavor profile of that bean, and then they remove the cherry from it, and get you that unroasted coffee bean and then the companies roast them from there. You can get some wild flavors out of natural process coffee beans. Play with that too.

Ryan Morfin:

Is all coffee organic. It seems to me that it would be, but can they put preservatives in there to screw it up?

Josh Bridges:

Yeah, not all coffee is organic. If you want to go that route, go that route. I don’t think you have to, to be honest. I do some organic coffees, but not all of the coffees. We offer one organic coffee bean for people who are very strict with that kind of thing. Fair trade is really good. That means you’re dealing with people who are directly dealing with the coffee farmers. A lot of times the farmers are the ones who actually get the least amount of money out of this process. What’s happening now is you’re seeing a lot of coffee roasters going directly to coffee farmers. Those typically direct to farm fair trade style coffee beans. That means that, basically, those farmers are out there and they’re actually making the money that they deserve to make, because they’re the ones that are producing the coffee beans.

Ryan Morfin:

Are there any domestic production of coffee in the United States?

Josh Bridges:

There’s one. Well, there’s two technically. You got Hawaii. Hawaii is the one and only, really, in domestic, but then you have, as of recently, they’re trying to produce coffee in Southern California. One farm did it. It’s actually Jason Mraz. You know the singer Jason Mraz?

Ryan Morfin:

Oh yeah. Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Josh Bridges:

It’s his family’s coffee farm. That was last year, they actually had a little harvest and a small batch. That was actually really cool to see. I think at some point they’ll figure it out, and it’ll be better. Yeah, so that’s the only two.

Ryan Morfin:

Interesting. Is it so hard because of the climate, or is there the soil?

Josh Bridges:

Yeah, exactly. It’s all of the above. The soil, the altitude, the weather has got to be perfect. Basically, there’s a coffee belt that wraps around the equator, and that’s where the coffee can grow. If you look on a map it’s however many degrees above and however many degrees below, there’s this belt that wraps around where all the coffee comes from in the world.

Ryan Morfin:

What are your two favorite countries of origin for coffee?

Josh Bridges:

I’ll give you three because I…

Ryan Morfin:

You can’t pick a favorite child.

Josh Bridges:

Yeah right. I can’t pick two out of these three. Ethiopians’ are my favorite. If I walk into a coffee shop, I typically go with an Ethiopian, and then you have Panama, is really coming out with some amazing coffees. Then my last one is Brandeis. They can be really good if they’re good, but they can also be really bad if they’re not good. I always tend to try them if I see them in a store, because they’re not carried very often.

Ryan Morfin:

You buy your beans and you get them roasted here in the United States?

Josh Bridges:

Yes. We roast them up in Connecticut as of right now.

Ryan Morfin:

Very good. Once you roast them, you get your different flavors, if you will, different types, you package them. A lot of our viewers are also business people, so tell me a little bit about your go to market approach. How is that? Is it online? Is it retail? Is it both?

Josh Bridges:

As of right now, we’re pretty much all online. We’re only a little over a year. We’re basically 13 months old. The cool part is that the three of us… Excuse me. The three of us already came in with a platform. We all have a following from our CrossFit days and plus my military background, and so we had this platform. That was what we started with. Our marketing was just us marketing it as ourselves like, “Hey, this is our coffee. Come try it.” Now, we’re trying to reach broader audiences other than just the CrossFit world. The marketing’s huge. It’s big. The thing about marketing is you can sell it just because people want to be associated with the brand. That’s really been eye opening for me is, you’ll see people’s coffee companies that are doing really well and you’re like, “Man, I’ve had that coffee. It’s not very good,” but people just want to be associated with certain brands that do good things.

Josh Bridges:

That really isn’t one of the reasons why we do this, but we like to give back. I personally love to give back to military services, and so we do a lot of work where all of our bags are named after someone that we think is a good dude. We have the Roosevelt, the Reagan, the Washington, the Lincoln, the Sampson. The Sampson’s actually a really cool story. The bag is actually named after a woman, Deborah… Sorry, excuse me. Deborah Sampson. She was in the civil war, and she dressed a man to fight for… Oh, I’m sorry, the revolutionary war. I said, civil. The revolutionary war where she disguised as a man so she could fight in the war. The only reason she got found out is because she got shot in the hip and as she was getting taken care of medically, they found out she was a woman. It was really… [crosstalk 00:20:23]

Ryan Morfin:

Imagine the doctor’s surprise.

Josh Bridges:

Yeah, exactly. You’re right.

Ryan Morfin:

Deborah seems like a good dude to me.

Josh Bridges:

Yeah, exactly. We do a lot of stuff where we name… We worked with the Pat Tillman Foundation where we give a hundred percent of not only the proceeds, but everything. A hundred percent of sales to those foundations just to give back. The military has given me so much and what it’s done for our country and what it’s done for everyone in the country has been a blessing for us. We have a lot of veterans out there that are struggling mentally. There’s so many great foundations that we can help perpetuate with our brand, and so it’s been a really cool thing for us to do that.

Ryan Morfin:

To go a little deeper down the coffee rabbit hole with you, do you prefer a drip coffee or pour over? Any thoughts on the benefits of each?

Josh Bridges:

Yeah. I personally love a pour over, and I love espresso. I think that’s all comes down to taste. That was actually the other thing I wanted to talk about earlier was the methods of brewing. For me drip, there are good drip machines out there, they’re a little pricier than your Mister coffees, but…

Ryan Morfin:

Well, I’m going to ask you to name some names on this one. What would be a great drip machine that you think would blow people’s socks off? I think a lot of people, they don’t realize. They just make the coffee in the morning, go in the office and don’t think about it. I think you said it earlier, if you’re going to do something, be excellent at it. If we want to get the gear to be excellent at coffee, what’s the gear you’d recommend people go after?

Josh Bridges:

On the drip, I’m not very good at that. I can’t remember the name of the machine. I’m going to try to think of it before we get off here. I’ll try to think of it. If I was going to start, I would start with a pour over. It’s really simple. You get a Hario V60. That’s super simple. You got to get filters for that, and then you have to basically just get a kettle. Having a temperature kettle that shows you what the water temperature is, is big, because if you boil water and then pour it on your grounds, that water will actually burn the grinds. If you don’t have a kettle that has temperature gauge on it, you want to basically brew 195 to 205, is typically where you want to stay degrees Fahrenheit. If you don’t have that, boil your water and then let it rest for about a minute. That should bring that water temp back down to where it wants to be.

Josh Bridges:

You don’t want to pour boiling hot water on your coffee grounds. It’s going to ruin the flavor of the coffee. That’s really it. It’s really simple for a pour over. There’s another great process… Oh, go ahead. Sorry.

Ryan Morfin:

No, I’ll just say any cuisine or type of kettle. It doesn’t matter really, just get it hot.

Josh Bridges:

Yeah. The gooseneck kettles can help with… it’s called blooming the grounds and dispersing it. This is getting really into the weeds here with it. You don’t have to have a gooseneck kettle, but if you can, it’s not a bad idea. It just helps you evenly distribute the water over the grounds. Then you have an AeroPress. An AeroPress is another process. It makes a really concentrated cup of coffee, so it’s a little thicker or a little more flavor for people who like that heavy flavored coffee. You’re going to pull your grounds in it. It’s a plastic tube, and it’s really cheap. They’re like 20 bucks. They’re not expensive. They’re great to travel with because when you’re traveling, you’re stuck getting hotel coffee or whatever.

Ryan Morfin:

That mermaid place. Ugh, yeah.

Josh Bridges:

I travel with my coffee, and I typically travel with my AeroPress. It’s a really easy process. You get little filters on there as well. Just go to www.aeropress.com or look it up on Amazon. It’s all on there. It’s simple. Same thing, you’re going to want to maybe even have a scale because what you want to have is consistency. You want to have the same number of grounds to the same number of water that you pour through the grounds. When you’re doing a pour over, you’re going to go one to 15, one to 16, one to 14 ratio. That is coffee grounds to water ratio. If I put in 20 grams of coffee, I’m going to pour 320 grams of water on that. Having a scale just helps make it consistent so that you always get that same great flavor that you want.

Ryan Morfin:

Got it.

Josh Bridges:

[crosstalk 00:25:13] Or you can go with the French press.

Ryan Morfin:

Talk to me about French press. Does that just get too oily, do you think? What are your thoughts on that?

Josh Bridges:

Yeah, I’m not a big fan of French press. For me it does. It gets really oily. It’s a really dirty… dirty is probably the best word to describe it because you’ll see that layer of oil on top of the coffee. It has that distinct flavor. Sometimes you’ll even get some of the grinds into your cup of coffee, so I’m not a huge fan of that. Some people are. Again, it’s all up to you. You’re the captain of your own cup of coffee. Whatever you want to drink.

Ryan Morfin:

Well, you would hope so because if you’re not, then you got to start making choices for yourself. Become an adult here. Tell me about your choice of espresso makers. Maybe let’s talk about entry-level and let’s talk about, “Hey, I’m an adult. I can afford a nice coffee espresso maker for my office.”

Josh Bridges:

Yeah. For your home, you got a couple of different options. You have some manual ones. There’s a great one called Flair Espresso. It’s a manual press that really makes… if you dial that thing in, you can make a phenomenal cup of coffee. It’s like 300 bucks. It’s not bad at all. I would not buy anything cheaper than $300 other than something that’s manual. Breville doesn’t make a bad… it’s not a bad cup of coffee. I don’t think it holds the right amount of pressure that you need to make a great espresso, but it’s not bad. It’s definitely drinkable. Once you get into the big boys, you’re going to start upwards of a thousand, $2000 or $5,000.

Josh Bridges:

You can start with a Rocket Espresso. It’s a decent espresso maker. I think that starts at a thousand to $2,000. Then you have La Marzocco Linea Mini, which is what I have. Now you’re looking at spending… it took me a few years to pull the trigger on it. I was like, “I don’t know, but then I really love it.” [inaudible 00:27:18] like $5,000, so that could go into an office for sure. Something like that. There’s a lot of different options out there, but those are probably your basic tiers.

Ryan Morfin:

When you’re looking at espresso grinds, do the prepackaged pellets or do you think you still need the powder and measure it out? What are your thoughts on that?

Josh Bridges:

I would never use a packet. I would never use that in espresso. It’s not good coffee.

Ryan Morfin:

Coffee blasphemy.

Josh Bridges:

The moment you grind coffee, you have about 20 minutes before it actually starts to go stale. If you buy ground coffee at a supermarket, that coffee has been stale for a while because there’s no way that they just grounded.

Ryan Morfin:

I’ve never bought espresso beans, but you can go order espresso beans online.

Josh Bridges:

To be honest, there are traditional espresso style beans which is going to be a darker because espresso comes from Italy. The traditional style of Italian espressos are really dark. It’s a really dark roast. Nowadays though, to be honest, I actually use our lightest roast in my espresso beans. I use our Reagan, and it really brings out some crazy flavors in your espresso. Again, no one tells you exactly how you have to do this stuff. That’s what’s so cool about coffee. There are some guidelines that are created to help you so that you don’t ruin coffee and waste it, but you can play and do and try different things and try different ratios, and you never know, maybe you’ll make a great cup of coffee by accident. I try lighter roast on my espresso. You don’t have to buy espresso beans to make an espresso.

Ryan Morfin:

When you get the beans, what gear do you need to get them grounded up properly?

Josh Bridges:

For espresso, you’ve got to go really super fine, so you have to have a good grinder and it can’t be a blade grinder. A blade grinder chops the bean up. It’s basically going to give you an uneven extraction, which is going to give you bad flavor. You need to get a burr grinder, B-U-R-R, and that’s a type of grinder. It’s not a model of grinder or anything. There’s a burr. It looks like a screw in the machine, and that’s how it grinds up your coffee beans. It’s going to grind it up very evenly and can grind it very fine. Any burr grinder out there, as long as it’s decent, should be able to get you down into that finer grinder. The more expensive you probably pay for a grinder, the better it’s going to perform.

Josh Bridges:

There’s actually a hand grinder that does a really good job. It’s called the Comandante. That’s like the Cadillac of hand grinders. It’s a beautiful thing. It’s a little pricier. It’s 250 bucks or whatever, but it’s worth it because it does very coarse grind, and then it can go all the way down to very fine grounds. You just have to dial it in.

Ryan Morfin:

What about electric grinders? Any names on that front?

Josh Bridges:

La Marzocco makes a great one for a very… if you’re going top end espresso maker, you might as well get a top end espresso grinder. La Marzocco, the espresso machine, they also make their grinder too. That’s what I have.

Ryan Morfin:

Got it. We’ll have to check that out. This is going to be a very expensive episode for me. As it relates to any other gear that people need to think about if they want to make a really serious, wow cup of coffee?

Josh Bridges:

Those are some of your main ones. There’s things called the siphon. Siphon’s a really cool way to make coffee. It’s a little bit more of a mess. It has a lot more cleanup than your pour overs or your AeroPress because basically what it is is, you’re going to put your grounds in the top. It looks almost like an hour glass. You’ll put grounds at the top and then you’re going to have water underneath, and then as you heat the water up on the stove, the water actually goes up and percolates up into the top, sits with the water, and then when you take it off the heat, it comes back down. Now you have to clean out the whole glass process, but it does make a really good cup of coffee. Again, if you want to get really crazy and start trying a bunch of different stuff, the siphon is actually a really cool way to make coffee as well.

Ryan Morfin:

Have you ever looked at or grabbed coffee from the Clover press that Starbucks has?

Josh Bridges:

Yeah. It’s kind of a total immersion coffee where the coffee, and the water and the grind sit together for a little bit, and then you basically sit it on top of your coffee mug and it drains through. It’s like a AeroPress a little bit, except for it’s a combination of an AeroPress and a pour over at the same time. I have used that. Again, it’s going to give you just a little… you’re going to get some more of that oil in there because it’s sitting with the coffee instead of just draining through like a pour over does.

Ryan Morfin:

This has been phenomenal. How do you take your coffee? You take it cream and sugar, or just black?

Josh Bridges:

Just black. A buddy of mine, when I first started drinking coffee, was like, “We drink our coffee black,” and I was like, “Fair enough.” I never got a taste for putting cream, or sugar, or anything like that in my coffee. I’ve always gone black. I think once you start to and you start to drink good coffees, you don’t really need that stuff. It’s a lot of sugar, it’s a lot of fat, it’s… black coffee really has three calories, and so it’s great. Even if you’re doing fasting, you can drink coffee technically without ruining your fast. Yeah, I go black with my coffee.

Ryan Morfin:

Tell me any health benefits that any coffee production associations have sponsored? What are the benefits of drinking coffee? I think it just keeps me on my game and wakes me up in the morning, but what are your thoughts about drinking a cup of coffee?

Josh Bridges:

There’s a lot of different thoughts on that, I guess, on health benefits, good, bad. I think everything in moderation is fine. I think caffeine is good for me. It helps me focus. Like you said, it gets me on my game and it helps me to let my brain not be so cloudy. Are there actual health benefits? I don’t know. I’m not a nutritionist, I’ve never studied it, so I don’t want to sit here and be like, “Oh, I’ve read this and this.” There’s a lot of different sayings on it, there’s a lot of different thoughts on it, so like I said, everything in moderation. But I don’t think it’s that bad for you. I think that if you have a lot of anxiety, maybe should you drink a little less coffee? Sure.

Ryan Morfin:

Is there such a thing as too much coffee? I don’t believe that, but do you think there is?

Josh Bridges:

I try not to drink coffee too late in the day, but that’s just me personally because I need my sleep. As an athlete, I know how important sleep is, and so for me, I try not to disrupt my sleep by drinking coffee after say 2:00 PM. A lot of people would say it should probably even be earlier than that, but I stick to 2:00 PM. I can have a cup of coffee up to 2:00 PM. After that, I cut myself off with caffeine.

Ryan Morfin:

As it relates to the industry, we’ll call it smaller producers and new brands that are emerging in the coffee industry, a lot of them have this double bottom line social impact component. How has the industry been since the pandemic? People aren’t going to Starbucks as much as they used to. Are you seeing sales start to blossom, and what are your thoughts about the industry for coffee going forward?

Josh Bridges:

Yeah, I think it’s a great [inaudible 00:35:34]. I think that this whole third wave coffee is doing great things. It’s bringing good coffee to everyone out there. A lot of people have grown up with drinking either Maxwell House or Yuban. Those old ken cups. Then Peet’s and Starbucks came in and those took over from the Maxwell Houses. Now you’re seeing a bunch of third wave coffee companies that are coming in bringing amazing coffee out there. That’s really huge, and I think that the industry is only going to go up because you’re getting more people involved, more people to change the processes and flavor profiles of different coffee beans, so it’s really exciting where coffee’s going. For us, yes, the pandemic has actually made our sales go up. It was very noticeable right off the bat.

Josh Bridges:

We do a subscription to where you can order. Say if you need two pounds every week, we’ll send you two pounds every week and it just shows up at your door. It’s an auto renew subscription. You don’t have to worry about running out of coffee and being like, “Man, crap. I got to put that order in,” and then still wait however many days it takes for the coffee to get to you. You always have your coffee coming to you, which is nice, right? You don’t have to go spend exactly $5 for a cup of coffee at that place down the street that nobody likes.

Ryan Morfin:

Yeah. That mermaid place. They’re ripping people off and people keep paying it because they need the fix. I think if you can make it easy for them to get access to it and educate them that it’s more of an art than a conformity, I think people will start to appreciate it. A question for you, who makes the best cup of coffee in the world? Is that Americans, Italians, Colombians, Turks, Australians? Who do you think has perfected the cup of coffee?

Josh Bridges:

I have a hard time going against the US right now. We have a lot of people who are getting really deep into the coffee business and going down these crazy paths with the processes and stuff like that, so it’s really cool to see. I haven’t traveled too much. I had a little bit of coffee in Europe, but I haven’t found the type of coffee that we have here, and so I’d have to stick with the US.

Ryan Morfin:

I would agree. Question for you as it relates to the coffee industry. You’re starting to see new competitors come in, like Ascension, and you’ve got Starbucks and then there’s this Chinese knockoff that looks exactly the same. Do you think the consumer eventually gets tired of these big brands and it will start to go niche. I guess that’s probably your hope, but what are the inflection points in your industry, the trends that you’re seeing for this niche coffee market?

Josh Bridges:

I think right now the convenience factor until… You have to educate people for people to understand how easy and how quick you can actually make really good cups of coffee at your house floor, and how much money you would actually save. People are paying for convenience right now. They’re going to those places that you just mentioned because it’s convenient. It’s right down the street, it doesn’t take that long, but they’re willing to spend the extra couple of dollars because of the convenience factor. If we can educate these people that how fast you can actually make a really good cup of coffee that really doesn’t take that long in the morning, not only are you going to save money, but you’re going to have better coffee in your cup, which is great for everyone. That’s two pluses.

Josh Bridges:

That’s what we’re trying to do with our marketing. We’re trying to teach people how quickly you can make an AeroPress, how quickly you can make a pour over in the morning. We’re doing videos and showing them and basically saying, “You don’t have all this fancy equipment, you don’t have a scale, that’s fine. All you need is a teaspoon. Basically, just be consistent with how much coffee ground you’re putting into it. I think education is the key. Once we get the word out there to the masses, then people can understand that it’s not that hard, it doesn’t take that much time, it’s just as convenient, and it’s cheaper and it’s better.

Ryan Morfin:

Run me through your product list. I know you’ve got the iced coffee and you’ve got the Reagan. Talk to me a little bit about your range of products.

Josh Bridges:

Yeah. Right now we’re offering a… it’s called Snap Chilled, and that’s a cold brew. I’m not a cold coffee type of guy, but a lot of people are. A lot of people like cold coffee, and it’s in a can so it’s convenient. Again, same thing, convenience is what a lot of people are looking for. How it’s brewed though, most cold coffee is brewed very slow, and it becomes very bitter and has a little flavor. I think it all tastes the same. Ours is actually brewed hot, snap chilled and then put in the cans so it keeps that flavor. It’s a really great convenient way to drink cold brew. Then we offer five different bags.

Josh Bridges:

We have the Reagan, which is a Panama. It’s our lightest roast. We have the Roosevelt, which is an Ethiopian. That is a light medium roast. It has some really good flavor notes in there. It’s a really great cup of coffee as well. Then you’re going to go into a little bit more of our medium darks. You have the Lincoln, that’s our organic fair trade coffee. That is a Peruvian. Then we have the Washington, which is a Guatemalan, another medium dark roast. Really smooth cups of coffee. They’re just not quite as bright as those lighter roasts.

Josh Bridges:

Then we have our Sampson, which is our darkest roast for people who have that taste for… what I like to say is, “Hey, do you like your coffee that tastes like coffee?” because that’s the only way to really describe it. It’s a very caramelized, smokey flavor, a little bitter because it’s roasted really long. People have that because they grew up with that flavor, so that’s what they want to taste. We have to have an option for them, and so that’s what we have the Sampson for. That’s from Columbia. They’re also all single origin coffees, no blends.

Ryan Morfin:

Fantastic. Well, I’m going to definitely get on Amazon and start ordering some equipment here just so I can save money and save time. That’ll be my excuse so I don’t have to wait in line. Eventually I’ll save money on this I’m sure. What are some things that leave you, I’ll say optimistic about today? As a veteran, as an entrepreneur, your insights as to where we are as a country, what are some silver linings you see?

Josh Bridges:

Yeah. Right now the country, if you look in the media, you’d think the country was burning down, but I’m an optimistic guy. I don’t like to read the news headlines sometimes. I think that people are trying to push certain agendas for certain reasons. If you go out and around and you actually talk to people, there’s a lot of great people out there doing a lot of great things. Our country, it’s not in a bad place. If you look at the stock market, the stock market’s up. Our economy is doing well. Yeah, the unemployment rate’s down because of this pandemic, but hopefully when the pandemic ends, things are going to come back around. I think they always will because we’re the United States and man, we don’t like to lose. I’m very optimistic about our country.

Ryan Morfin:

Back to back world war champions, yeah, we don’t like to lose. Do you think there’s any correlation between coffee consumption and GDP growth?

Josh Bridges:

Could be. Yeah, I think so.

Ryan Morfin:

If even if it is fake news, I like it. What are you doing to educate yourself as an entrepreneur, as a leader, what podcasts, what books, what are you doing to entertain yourself when you’re not in your business?

Josh Bridges:

Yeah, it’s hard. I try to educate myself as much as possible. Right now I’m spread a little thin, so my learning isn’t where it probably should be because I’m still training if I want to compete. I’m doing my own podcast. We’re doing a YouTube channel, so a lot of different things going on…[crosstalk 00:43:36]

Ryan Morfin:

What’s the name of the podcast?

Josh Bridges:

It’s Checkin’ In, The Josh Bridges Podcast. We’ve only released [crosstalk 00:43:43] four episodes. I’m talking to a lot of my ex military buddies, talking about… I have a lot of good friends who are doing a lot of great things with the mental health issue that a lot of our veterans are dealing with, and so we’re talking a lot about that kind of stuff. Talking about the CrossFit world, just talking about everything. It’s a very well rounded show. It doesn’t have a specific focus, just a good listen for people who want to be entertained and maybe hear some people’s thoughts on being mentally prepared for situations and things like that. I’m having a lot of fun with that. It’s been a really good time to just sit and chat with really intelligent people and listen to them and learn from them, so I’ve had a great time with it. It’s doing well right now.

Ryan Morfin:

Fantastic. Are you going to do any YouTube videos and commercials or movies?

Josh Bridges:

I’m not going to do any movies. I have a YouTube channel. Just type in my name, Josh Bridges, and you can find it. It’s a lot of me training and talking about mindset. Right now, I feel like we’re the state is with social media and people, I feel like depression is probably at an all time high because you’re constantly comparing yourself to other people on social media, things like that and how you can get away from that. How you can get away from having a sense of entitlement because it’s the worst thing anyone can have. You go out and you get what you earn. We talk a lot about that kind of stuff on that YouTube channel. I learned a lot, I had a lot of great mentors in my military time, a lot of great men who did a lot of great things and changed my perspective in a lot of way. It’s been a huge thing for me, and I just want to pass it along to anybody who wants to hear it.

Ryan Morfin:

What’s one or two songs that get you motivated when you’re doing your CrossFit competition? Are you able to listen to music while you’re doing it, or is it something that you just got to zone in?

Josh Bridges:

In training, I listen to music. The song I always love is Led Zeppelin, When the Levee Breaks. It’s a fantastic one. Another song, the AC DC Thunderstruck, always a great one. I’m a classic rock type of guy.

Ryan Morfin:

Fantastic. Well, Josh, thank you for your service, thank you for coming on the episode today, educating me and our viewers about what a good dude is and a good cup of coffee looks like. We’d love to have you back on in the future. We’ll definitely hyperlink all this and give people a way to follow you. Can you give everybody a quick shout out on what your website is so they can find you online?

Josh Bridges:

Yeah, for sure. Thank you so much. You can find the coffee at www.gooddudescoffee.com. Head over there, grab yourself some coffee, and go brew up a great cup of coffee. I appreciate it. Thank you so much for having me on. I really had a great time.

Ryan Morfin:

Absolutely. Thank you so much. Have a great day. Thanks for watching Non-Beta Alpha. Before we go, please remember to subscribe, like and follow us on our YouTube channel, Spotify podcast. This is Non-Beta Alpha, and now you know.

 

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