By Don Nelson
Lariat Coffee Roasters is unveiling a new product and a new look for its packaging this month as the Winthrop-based company continues adapting to growth.
Owners Lori Loomis and Bob Gamblin said that Black Colt, a 16-ounce bottle of cold-brewed, double-filtered coffee concentrate, will be on local retail shelves soon.
And Lariat has just received a big shipment of its new, customized 16-ounce bags for retail sales of whole beans and ground coffee.
When it rebranded from Backcountry Coffee Roasters to Lariat in July 2013, the company introduced a new line of coffee bags that were either black or white, with labeling pasted on.
Those will be replaced by the new bags, which are predominantly black with red trim, with all the verbiage printed directly on the package. The old bags may be mixed in with the new during transition. Bulk bags (two and five pounds) will retain the previous packaging.
“We have been in business for over eight years and Lariat has reached the tipping point in our growth rate that made custom packaging both a necessity and a cost-effective upgrade,” Gamblin said.
Loomis and Gamblin had the idea for a cold-brewed drink several years ago but put it on hold after the 2013 rebranding.
Black Colt is a versatile drink, Loomis said. One bottle can be used to make several hot or cold coffee drinks because it is so highly concentrated, she said. It can also be used in recipes or as the foundation for “coffee cocktails,” Loomis added. The bottle will come with a recipe card, and the foil label will be embossed.
Black Colt will be brewed and bottled at Lariat’s plant and retail store on Horizon Flats. “It will go from bean to bottle in 48 hours,” Loomis said, and will have a shelf life of about four weeks.
The new packaging was designed by Earth & Sky Studios in Twisp, using the original artwork by Mary Sharman that has appeared on the coffee bags since Backcountry became Lariat. Customization has allowed Lariat to include more information on the packages, such as guidelines for preparing the “perfect cup.”
“I think the new Lariat package and Black Colt cold brew will turn a lot of heads,” Loomis said.
The owners said they also have acquired three trademarks: the Lariat name, the marketing design, and the Cowboy Mud blend name.
Backcountry Coffee Roasters was founded by Loomis and Gamblin in 2006. When the Lariat brand was adopted in 2013, the new name and packaging were intended to create a more “upscale” image, the owners said at the time.