The story of Café do Brasil, producers of Kimbo Coffee, is like a story straight out of a Hollywood movie, all about success, willpower and entrepreneurship. It is actually an all-Italian, or rather Neapolitan, tale unfolding over the last 50 years, a history of daring choices made with a a classic text book example of prodigious entrepreneurial flair. Created as a small roasting plant in the years after the Second World War, Café do Brasil grew exponentially to become a nationally renowned coffee roasting company.
By the 1970's, Kimbo Coffee was the undisputed market leader in Campania, thanks to the unfaltering superior quality and the adherence to the typical Neapolitan tradition in coffee. From a distribution limited to the Campania region, Café do Brasil implemented a bold expansion policy and by 1994 had gained a prominent second place on the Italian packaged-coffee market with their brands Kimbo and Kosé.
Café do Brasil has continued to expand and currently delights millions of consumers world-wide with the unique aroma of their coffee.
The unflagging grit and determination of the three founding Rubino brothers can still be seen today in the efforts of their children and grandchildren. Their team manages a network of 300 agents and a 40,000 square meters plant in Naples.
Naples, Coffee and Kimbo
There are many beautiful Italian cities with traditions such as Rome, Venice, Milan and Turin. Yet, further South there is a city on the slopes of Vesuvius where time apparently stood still, i.e. Naples. People of Naples love coffee or, even better, espresso. Coffee culture and their daily espresso are as much part of Neapolitan culture as being jolly, laid-back and passionate.
Neapolitans are very critical with it for espresso is not just espresso. There are many kinds and many ways of preparing and drinking it. Traditionally Espresso Corto with little water and much coffee and Espresso Lungo with a little more water are the favorites of the Neapolitans. This does not mean that they do not fancy Caffè Latte or Caffè Macchiato; they just prefer espresso. In addition, Neapolitans who really enjoy life swear by their Caffè Kimbo, a coffee roaster based in Naples. Caffè Kimbo is the company that represents the Neapolitan coffee culture.
Owing to the fact that in Naples almost everyone has their own regular bar where they feel welcome and, of course, have the best espresso, there are about 500 to 600 coffee bars in the city. It is really conspicuous that coffee bars in the South are clearly distinct from those in the North of the country. While in the North people sit down, you stand up in the South (mainly in Naples). Going to a coffee bar is a regular ritual: you enter a bar, have a coffee and a glass of water (you always order a coffee and a glass of water) and go back to your work. This way Neapolitans easily have 3 or 4 espressos a day. They simply take that time and enjoy their coffee. And at prices between 70 and 90 cents per cup this is also an affordable pleasure.
Those who have no time or think espresso does not taste that well in a bar make their coffee at home. Each household in Naples has their own small espresso machine, cafetière or Bialetti Moka Express. This little stainless steel machine makes a heavenly espresso in no time. The cafetière is used every morning because the first thing that comes to a Neapolitan’s mind is a freshly brewed espresso which they mostly have with milk. You do not leave house before you have had some coffee! There is a saying in Naples about how an espresso should taste: it should be the three Cs, ‘comme cazzo coce’ which in English means “It’s darn hot”.
The typical Naples coffee bar layout is rather simple if not even old-fashioned, without any knickknacks. A small bar, a few snacks, two to three employees and that is about it. If you prefer larger and more modern, you have to go to a Bar Pasticceria. What should not be missing, of course, is a Barista. A Barista in a suit hurrying from office to office with a tray in his hand is simply there to serve coffee to those who cannot leave office. They are not to be mistaken with what we know today as a Barista, namely the person working behind the bar making drinks. This coffee is our recommendation for optimum coffee pleasure.