The People Behind The Coffee: Foster Oren Haney

By Ruth Ann Petroff
The People Behind The Coffee: Foster Oren Haney

Foster Oren Haney: Director of Equipment Service and Sales

Putting a label on Foster Oren Haney is difficult. Nomad. Musician. Purist. Rule-breaker. Savant. What’s certain, his restless spirit has long been drawn to adventure—and fueled by his passion for great coffee.

A native son of Oregon—not to one town or city in particular, but the entire state, really—Foster spent much of his youth and young adult life touring the Pacific Northwest and beyond. A musician since he picked up his father’s old guitar as a kid, Foster’s exploration cut a long and winding path, often with little more in tow than a beat-up six-string, and a ceramic mug.

Those long days and longer nights nurtured an appreciation for good, strong coffee. So, it’s not surprising that Foster found himself on the big island of Hawaii, and wouldn't you know it, he found himself picking coffee beans. He jumped at the chance. Experiencing coffee at its origins made an impression on Foster. It was in this role that he gained both knowledge and admiration for the hard work and commitment necessary to produce genuinely remarkable coffee.

After returning stateside, Foster made his way to the city of Los Angeles, where he began working with Stumptown Coffee Roasters. Applying his natural knack for machinery, which may have been garnered tinkering under the hood of cars and fixing guitars, Foster trained with some of the best coffee technicians in the country. This experience afforded Foster the chance to deepen his understanding of coffee equipment.

After nearly two years in the city of angels, Foster packed up his truck and headed North toward Jackson. Foster quickly connected with Snake River Roasting Co. Foster is now our Director of Equipment Service and Sales. His extensive experience brings elevated expertise and know-how, complemented by his interest in each stage of coffee production from seed to cup. When he is not working on equipment, Foster is likely deep in the backcountry hiking, camping and living the mountain lifestyle.

Foster will be teaching an Espresso Equipment Maintenance class on Friday, October 19th, 2018 from 10 am-Noon.

We sat down with Foster and asked him a few questions!

What do you love about living in Jackson, Wyoming?
I enjoy the dramatic seasons along with the accessibility of hiking and outdoor recreation. You can walk out your back door or drive 30 minutes in any direction to find beauty in nature.

Do you have a favorite restaurant here in Jackson?
Jackson doesn't have much for the veggie hunters. That being said, Orsetto has some amazing dishes.

Do you have a favorite Snake River Roasting Co. roast?
There are several that I easily obsess over, but I end up taking home our Ethiopia Sidamo every time. I think it has something to do with the subtle hints of blueberry.

What is your favorite method of making coffee?
I never liked coffee growing up. Everyone always puts creamers or french vanilla in it to sweeten it up for the kid. It wasn't until I tried it at home pour over and black, which was how my mom made it every morning, that I really understood what coffee was about.

Tell us something that we may not know about you.
One day I hope to build guitars and amplifiers in my spare time. The combination of wood and electricity can bring out endless differences in tones that I want to know more about. Who knows, maybe one day I'll build the first guitar espresso machine hybrid.

Foster Oren Haney

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