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Simplicity and quality in coffee bags | KTRL

Uniquely flavored coffees in packaging evoking the iconic patterns of VHS cassettes, promoting simplicity: we have good news for coffee gourmets, because the coffee specialty named KTRL is here, with a characteristic label design made by Compact Studio. 

The minds behind the KTRL coffee brand are Péter Bajkó, the manager of Kontakt café in Budapest, and Roland Nagy, who is in charge of coffee roasting. As Roland says, they have already sold custom roasted coffee in Kontakt café before on an experimental basis, and then KTRL debuted early November as a separate coffee brand. Its name is an abbreviation of „KonTaktRoLand”—thus paying homage to its origins and the representatives of the brand.

And how are these uniquely flavored coffees made?

Roland chooses the coffees from a supplier in Antwerp, paying attention to the characteristics provided by the specific production areas and variants, and by making sure he chooses freshly harvested coffee. It is also important to him that the given coffee plantation or processing plant take part in a social movement and help the local community in some way. “For example, in the case of our Ethiopian coffee, our green coffee supplier donates one dollar to an Ethiopian organization promoting the employment of women so that more of them can get a steady income,” Roland explained.

Once the samples have arrived comes tasting, i.e. cupping, and then they select the coffees for each KTRL category. Then they profile the coffees, as Roland puts it: “we find the point where the notes of the coffee can prevail in the most harmonious manner in the final drink.”

The coffee specialties come with a characteristic packaging, which is also carbon-neutral on top, and both the coffee bag and the label can be recycled.

“We chose these old VHS-inspired patterns so that people could associate the sense of accessibility and easy manageability with them. Compact’s designers immediately got the swing of these values and of course of what we represent on the market: simplicity,” Roland shared.

When putting together their product palette, the minds behind the brand also made sure everyone could find a coffee to their liking. We can choose from three types of flavors, which we can easily identify based on the labels with different patterns. 

The first category represents classic and not-at-all intrusive notes: they usually select a Brazilian coffee for this type. Another category comes with a more sophisticated and fascinating taste, combining soft milk chocolate and fruity, plum-like notes—this is represented by a Peruvian coffee. The third category evokes fruity flavors in an even more gourmet way, without any distinct classic notes: this is currently an Ethiopian coffee, dominated by the taste of white tea, jasmine and nectarines. As Roland added, “it is a more of a tea-like beverage, which is harder to interpret for a customer who has never tasted coffee of this kind before. People are usually surprised that coffee can be like this, too.

“Already in this early phase quite many people order via our online store and purchase our product in Kontakt café. A hard core has already formed, the members of which come every month and purchase a larger quantity, and we have received orders from several foreign cafés already, which we are extremely happy about,” Roland highlighted.

If you’d like to taste KTRL’s coffee, look for them in Kontakt café and Horizont, or order them online.

Photos: Fanni Jurik

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