As an insanely caffeinated city, Evanston is filled to the brim with speciality coffee shops and cafés. Among them is Reprise Coffee Roasters, located on the city's Main Dempster Mile.

As one of the latest additions to our local caffeine scene, Reprise opened in August 2019 with an innovative social enterprise model that emphasizes ethical sourcing and sustainability. By working directly with small farming communities in Nicaragua, Reprise roasts award-winning and ethically produced coffee that will have any caffeine lover hooked. 

The mission: making an impact

Since it was founded, Reprise’s mission has been to make a environmental and financial impact as a small company. Owner Adam Paronto partnered with Gold Mountain Coffee Growers, a direct trade coffee company that connects roasters with Nicaraguan communities. It ensures high earnings and standards of living for local farmers.

Gold Mountain is a social enterprise company that is committed to reinvesting in farming communities. It employs people whose jobs could be replaced by machinery, provides access to micro-financing and supports local education programs. Gold Mountain also participates in many other sustainable-development projects. By partnering with Gold Mountain, Reprise works directly with about a dozen farmers in Matagalpa and Jinotega, bolstering their local economies in the process.

The faces behind the coffee

Central to Reprise’s mission is highlighting the individual Nicaraguan farmers who work effortlessly to grow and harvest some of the highest quality coffee on the market. To do so, each bag of coffee boasts the name of the farmer who produced it. One of Reprise’s most popular blends, the Don Francisco, is harvested in the mountains of Jinotega, Nicaragua by Francisco and his wife Blanca Nieve. 

“We’re really trying to educate people about paying attention to where their coffee comes from, and knowing that the place and the people that it comes from are being treated fairly," said co-owner Hunter Owen. "They’re being paid fairly and the quality of the product really stands out.”

Kyra Steck

To ensure a high quality of life for their farming partners, Reprise Coffee Roasters pays five to 15 times Fairtrade coffee prices. Despite paying so much more per pound of coffee, Reprise’s own prices are still on-par with other Evanston cafés as they drastically reduce their own profit. For Adam Paronto and Hunter Owen, this is a small sacrifice

“We were more than happy being competitive on price, knowing that our real mission is to educate people on the difference of quality and the difference in sourcing,” said Hunter Owen.

Taste the difference

Even to an ameteur coffee lover, the difference in quality is easy to taste. Specializing in a medium roast, Reprise’s coffee highlights the natural flavors of each blend with nodes of cocoa, red wine and tropical fruit. With regular drips, pour overs and espresso, you’ll instantly find your perfect caffeine match.

If you're more keen on specialty beverages like chai lattes, matcha lattes and seasonal sips, Reprise offers that, too. The coffee shop works with local businesses to highlight their ingredients--be it chocolate, honey or tea--and crafts unique drinks.

Reprise Coffee Roasters is located at 710 Main Street in Evanston and is well-worth the trip on the campus shuttle for an incredible cup of coffee. It also has a second location in Winnetka at 950 Green Bay Road. Whichever cafe you frequent, know that every drop of coffee is environmentally and ethically sourced, making an impact on the lives of those behind it.