Humans of coffee: Sara Zuluaga Parodi

Who is Sara Zuluaga Parodi?

I was born and raised in Medellín, Colombia in a coffee grower’s family. From a very young age coffee has been part of my life. Growing up in the very heart of the coffee production in Colombia has allowed me to experience and learn about the whole process from within. I will say I’m a business woman of many many hats because I love the coffee world, I’m passionate about traveling and I’m a certified yoga instructor.

What is your favorite childhood memory?

Spending time in the countryside of Colombia was definitely an amazing experience, from riding horses, bikes, climbing all kind of trees to swimming in rivers. I feel very privileged for being able to enjoy my exuberant country since I was a kid.

Sara2 by martin nambert
Photography by Martin Nabert

If you could have a do-over in life, what would you do differently?

Nothing at all. I feel proud of who I am and I believe that all the experiences that we have in life are the result of who we become.

What do you feel most proud of?

Last year I did an amazing 6-month trip around the world where I visited 16 countries. I saw the cherry blossom season in Japan, one of the most incredible and amazing things I’ve experienced in my life. I also volunteered at a kindergarten in Vietnam, lived in a remote island in Thailand, indulged in “La vie en rose” in France, pigged out in Italy, almost froze to death in the UK… I saw the world with different eyes and that made me realize how amazing life is, how beautiful people can be and how happy you can be with just a little. Furthermore, I learned that you set your own limits and that you can do everything you wish for.

Sara by MartinNambert
Photography by Martin Nabert

If you could keep only 3 possessions, what would they be and why?

  1. Passport: As traveling is one of my passions, this is my access to key to different worlds.
  2. Camera: So I can keep memories of all the places I get to see.
  3. Chemex:  Because it’s my favorite Brewing method, of course.

What do you want your tombstone to say?

Don’t look for love, look for coffee hahaha.

What is “Women of Coffee”?

I’m working on a project that empowers women of coffee to be independent and reach for bigger and better opportunities through education and the support of different entities.

What is your favorite kind of coffee?

I love Ethiopian Yirgacheffe! That clean taste and bright acidity with complex floral and citrusy notes is definitely my favorite… And if it’s Chemex brewed, then it’s perfection.

Sara by Bennedict
Photography by Benedict Kraus

In which coffee shops are we likely to bump into you?

Algarabia: They have a social project with coffee being produced in what used to be one of the most dangerous neighborhoods Medellin. It’s of very good quality.

La Cafeteca: Owned by one of my coffee masters, they have the best coffee in town and also an amazing variety of naturals and honeys from Antioquia.

Café de Amalia: Located in downtown Medellin, a nice cozy spot to enjoy different profiles in a different area of the city.

What does a perfect day look like?

First, a cup of natural coffee on Chemex from my coffee farm, then some yoga to wake up followed by a round of banana pancakes with honey and more coffee. Afterwards, bike ride to ease the digestion and make room for lunch with family and friends. Then, maybe a little nap on my hammock, spend time with my dog and enjoy the sunset at my coffee farm on the top of the mountains. I’d probably wrap it up with a delicious dinner, a book and  some wine.

Cover image by Benedict Kraus