This Absurd “Donald Trump Coffee” Ironically Promises to Strike Back at “Liberal Starbucks”

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This Absurd “Donald Trump Coffee” Ironically Promises to Strike Back at “Liberal Starbucks”

One of the most incredible aspects of politically motivated zeal, hatred and cults of personality is the way their fervor can be harnessed for a profit … and the way that profit so often comes about in fields that would appear to be completely unrelated to politics.

This a concept we’ve all seen up close every four years, in the days preceding and following a presidential election. Kitschy knickknacks and curios emblazoned with the faces of the candidates are a shyster peddler’s dream, and there are plenty of idiots out there who buy them, whether they’re positive (tee shirts) or negative (novelty toilet paper), if only so they can have one more outlet for displaying their personal lack of a personality outside of identity politics.

But of course, this being America, some companies take it upon themselves to take this concept to its most illogical extreme, remaking the entire identity of their business in order to pander to an oblivious political niche audience. And I believe I’ve managed to find one of the most ridiculous, cringeworthy examples in recent memory: Dallas, Georgia’s Thrasher Coffee Company.

At first glance, Thrasher might appear to be a relatively average micro-roaster of specialty coffee beans and blends—the kind of company that dots the urban landscape of just about any affluent American city. After all, where there are people with money, there’s a desire for artisanal, small-batch coffee, just as there is for any other small-batch, high-end food or drink product such as craft beer or charcuterie. The goal of a micro-roaster is typically to obtain and roast higher-quality beans from interesting varietals, in the interest of producing a more expensive (but more unique) bag of coffee for the consumer than what they can buy in big plastic tubs at the grocery store. Not too strange a concept, right? But then you click onto the list of coffees that Thrasher sells, and the first thing you see is this:

thrasher coffee main inset (Custom).jpgTrump coffee! Click for a larger photo.

Is that … four different coffees either emblazoned with Trump’s face or right-wing friendly patriotic messages, as the first things listed on the page? Why yes, it appears to be.

As it turns out, Thrasher’s true business is not necessarily “selling coffee,” but “flattering conservatives into buying coffee-tangential Trump paraphernalia.” And the fact that they didn’t think to name one of those coffee brands “Wake Up, Sheeple”? That’s just a missed opportunity.

Scroll down the list, and you’ll see that Thrasher also sells some coffees that have no political branding at all, but it’s telling that all of the conservative-motivated bags appear first, having clearly become the novelty that the company is leaning on to appeal to customers in Trump country. Let’s look at the hilarious flavor text and descriptions on some of these coffees, shall we?

#45 Blend

It’s hard to be sure, but this coffee appears to be Thrasher’s Trumpian flagship. Check out these bits from its description on the website:

Tired of Liberal Starbucks? All other coffees are FIRED! Finally, a bold American blend in honor of our 45th President, Donald J. Trump. #45 Blend is intentionally mixed and roasted to be bold, just like our 45th President. It begins with a refreshing balance of the best beans from Central America and Africa, and ends with a flavor only roasting in America can provide.

The idea of the #45 Blend was somewhat daunting. We wanted a coffee dedicated to American ideals. We wanted a drink worthy of our current President as well as our Founding Fathers; a drink we’d gladly brew in the great American tradition of consuming coffee—going all the way back to the Boston Tea Party.

After countless roasting sessions and tasting cup after cup of coffee, we settled on a combination of medium-dark roasted and dark roasted beans (we suspect James Madison made his the same way). The resulting blend is technically known as a melange, but we still call it a blend; one in keeping with the diverse and blended nature of our favorite constitutional republic.

I must say, kudos to Thrasher for immediately ratcheting the cognitive dissonance-o-meter up to 11 by managing to praise the country’s “diverse and blended nature” while simultaneously dedicating this coffee to Donald Trump, whose immigration ban and family separation policy have already created a humanitarian crisis and living nightmare for immigrant families in the U.S. That is some grade-A hypocrisy right off the bat, and we’re only on the first coffee!

You know, perhaps the more accurate way to dedicate a brand of coffee to the ideals and business savvy of President Trump would be to fail as a company, just like the Trump-branded line of K-cups was discontinued in 2018?

The Best Part of Waking Up Is … Donald Trump is President

It’s a little bit unclear if this mouthful of a brand name is an entirely different product from the #45 Blend, or if it’s just the same coffee with a different meme slapped on top of it—if it’s the latter, I can only presume they’re hoping you won’t notice or care. Regardless, the descriptive text is amazing.

wake up trump coffee inset (Custom).jpg

This new dark roast coffee comes straight from the the source of Obama’s birth certificate—Kenya! Rich, heavy, syrupy and smooth. Regarded as one of the finest in the world. Unlike Obama, this Kenyan actually gets the job done. We’ve legally brought this coffee across the border to the United States and roasted it fresh for you right here in Dallas, Georgia!

Why do liberals hate waking up every morning. Because the rest of us are happy! And why are we happy? We live in the greatest nation on earth! Even better, we have a President who loves America and wants to keep it that way.

Don’t buy liberal Starbucks’ coffee. Support a conservative coffee company that will get your heart pumping red, white, and blue!

Whereas the #45 Blend at least makes the most basic attempt of describing the coffee itself, this one just shrugs and says “Hey, BIRTHERISM is totally relevant in 2018, right?!?” Because why bother talking about the merits of the product you’re selling when you can instead try to make “reason for purchase” into “to support a conspiracy theory that I’m hoping will defy the laws of space and time and prevent a former president from getting elected for his second term”? Way to stick it to Liberal Starbucks … which I’m assuming is a brick-and-mortar offshoot of the Starbucks corporation that I simply haven’t seen in person yet? They must only have them in Seattle.

Stand Up! American Coffee

Right about now, you might be saying something like “Sure, I love our racist president, but I don’t really want to look at his face before I drink my morning coffee, for obvious reasons. Isn’t there another right-wing coffee I could be drinking; preferably one that is hyper-focused on a random social issue totally unrelated to coffee?” And the answer is: Why yes, there is. Now, you can show your support for stripping others of their constitutional right to protest by purchasing “Stand Up!”, the only coffee that goes out of its way to include long-winded text about people kneeling during the national anthem at football games. Behold:

stand up coffee inset (Custom).jpg

It’s a sad day in our country when the most privileged and wealthy among us are ashamed to stand for our national anthem. Extreme left-wing ideology has crept in to every part of America like a virus. Even the NFL, one of America’s most celebrated sports, has been infected! What’s the solution? A shot of robust American coffee coursing through your red-blooded conservative veins.

Conservatives—you need to wake up stronger than ever! Sourced from American roasters, this bean means business. Using the finest beans available we have created a rich and hearty coffee. Enjoy tasting notes of almond and dark chocolate in this balanced brew. We stand alert and united. For those on their knees … apologize while you’re down there and please Stand Up.

Not only is this some of the most powerful coffee you’ll ever taste, it’s also not made by an ultra-liberal company like most other coffee companies. In fact, it’s made by fellow conservatives just like you, here in the heart of Georgia. Secede from liberal coffee companies and Stand Up for America!

It takes a special kind of mental gymnastics to completely misrepresent the reasons for and nature of every national anthem protest while simultaneously trying to sweeten the sound of the coffee’s origins by saying it’s “sourced from American roasters,” while ignoring that said coffee is GROWN in a foreign nation … probably one of those Loser Countries that keep trying to send their worst to sneak across our border, no doubt!

Unrelated: Do you think they serve this coffee in immigrant internment camps? Just wondering.

Liberty Blend

I’m not going to bother going into detail on this one, I just wanted to point out a couple of things:

1. The text is again all about the “melting pot quality that gives our United States vitality,” and the “diverse and blended nature of our favorite constitutional republic,” and it features coffee from Central America and Africa—two of the regions whose immigrants (and slaves) have faced and continue to face the most persecution in the U.S.A., including having their children ripped away from them at the U.S. border when seeking asylum.

2. This entire segment:

The idea of the Liberty Blend was somewhat daunting. We wanted a coffee dedicated to American ideals. We wanted a drink worthy of our Founding Fathers; a drink we’d gladly brew in the great American tradition of consuming coffee—going all the way back to the Boston Tea Party.

After countless roasting sessions and tasting cup after cup of coffee, we settled on a combination of medium-dark roasted and dark roasted beans (we suspect James Madison made his the same way). The resulting blend is technically known as a melange, but we still call it a blend; one in keeping with the diverse and blended nature of our favorite constitutional republic.

Wait, does that sound familiar for some reason? Could it be because Thrasher used the exact same two paragraphs to describe both Liberty Blend and #45 Blend, except with the words “Liberty Blend” swapped in???

Let’s be honest: This is definitely the exact same coffee as #45, isn’t it? Hell, this one probably existed first, before the people at Thrasher realized there was money to be made in pandering to Trump’s supporter base and putting his face on the label. In fact, there’s only two possibilities. Either it’s the same exact coffee, and these people are idiot charlatans who don’t realize they used the same two paragraphs on each page … or these people are lazy idiots who didn’t bother to write new text for their #45 Blend, because writing a description of the product you’re trying to sell is like, a lot of work and stuff.

Either way, let us not lose sight of the fact that these people are idiots.

Who’s Behind the Idiocy?

So we know they’re idiots, but what about the identity of the idiots? Well, the company’s “about” page isn’t much help; it’s just general platitudes about coffee, wrapped in a “support us, we’re an indie company” vibe. Likewise with the page about Master Roaster Seth Gragg—neither page mentions anything to do with conservatism, despite the fact that their coffees and merch page (get your LIBERAL TEARS mug here!) are completely saturated in it from top to bottom. It’s almost as if all the intense right-wing stuff might be coming from an unnamed source with total power over the company, like an owner …

Oh wait, that’s exactly the situation here.

Meet Brandon Vallorani, who is not mentioned anywhere on the company’s “about” pages, but is mentioned (not by name) as Thrasher’s “founder” in the entry for one of the company’s coffee blends, “The Wolves and the Mandolin.” Why is he mentioned here? Why, because this coffee is a tie-in to sell more copies of his book by the same name! A book on Vallorani’s “philosophy on business, life, family, and legacy.” Here’s some choice cuts from his author bio:

Brandon Vallorani is a practiced entrepreneur and accomplished CEO, having founded a media conglomerate recognized on the Inc. 5000 list for 5 consecutive years. More recently Brandon has shifted focus to Vallorani Estates, a hand-curated collection of artisanal products encouraging the celebration of life’s privileges.

Vallorani’s first book The Wolves and the Mandolin: Celebrating Life’s Privileges in a Harsh World released through ForbesBooks March 2017 and instantly achieved Amazon bestseller status in numerous categories. Through legend-worthy stories of his immigrant ancestors and his experiences as an entrepreneur, Brandon presents his philosophy on business, life, family, and legacy.

It also says he enjoys “playing in casinos around the world” at one point—yup, sounds like the ideal owner for your mom ‘n pop, hip, indie coffee roastery, right? Nothing says “arthouse coffee street cred” quite like THESE PHOTOS of your owner, emblazoned on your Amazon profile. Understandably, Thrasher Coffee doesn’t seem to advertise that it’s a subsidiary of “Vallorani Estates,” because the last thing that just about any artisanal coffee consumer wants is to buy products from THIS type of dude.

Just those few photos alone, they tell the tale. Wifebeater and sport coat combo? Check. Douchebag gold chain and cross, like he’s Hulk Hogan? Check. Glass of wine in one hand, cigar in the other? Check. Aviators? Check. Entire photoshoot specifically designed just to advertise a single narcissist’s affluence to the world? That’s a big check.

Lo and behold, the Trump worship suddenly makes so much more sense, does it not? And he’s even determined to take the hypocrisy full circle, because Vallorani’s book, by his own description, involves “legend-worthy stories of his immigrant ancestors.” Are you KIDDING ME, Brandon? You’re trying to make yourself seem like a wise man of the people with the stories of your hard-working immigrant ancestors, while simultaneously selling coffee branded with Trump’s face as his policies brutalize immigrant families? Are you completely and utterly shameless?

coffee shameless inset (Custom).PNG

Oh, so you ARE completely shameless, then. Makes sense. I can only assume that one of the five tips has to be “slather your product in a healthy coating of white nationalism and make it the top Google result for the term ‘Trump coffee.’” It’s actually the #2 result, by the way—right behind the discontinued Trump K-cups, whose remaining stock Amazon is apparently still trying to liquidate.

I’d like to think that Vallorani is also personally responsible for Thrasher’s decision to disregard the terms “fair trade,” “organic” and “bird friendly” in their coffees, as they proudly proclaim to do on the company’s FAQ page, but I’m sure that just came down to “coffees without those labels were cheaper for us to buy, so we bought them because Donald Trump would do the same. Now where’s the ketchup for my well-done steak?!?”

Ultimately though, the thing that makes me laugh the most about the existence of a brand like Thrasher Coffee may be the fact that a small, indie, artisanal product like coffee is inherently something where the consumer base is typically more liberal than conservative. Why? Because artisan coffee implies a degree of morality and empathy toward the less fortunate in its farming, harvesting and production, and these are all things that conservative consumers by and large don’t give a shit about.

Do you really think a Trump voter drinking pour-over varietal coffee cares about the roastery’s relationship with the farmers in Nicaragua, Honduras or Guatemala? These people don’t care when the U.S. government is putting the children of Guatemalan refugees IN CAGES, IN THE U.S. They’re sure as hell not caring about something as distant as whether those farmers, thousands of miles away, are being properly compensated for backbreaking labor, among other things. In fact, the one place that a roaster like Thrasher will probably never source any of its “American coffee” from … is America, despite the fact that coffee grown in California is actually on the rise.

thrasher coffee home page (Custom).jpg

Let’s just say that there’s a reason why you tend to find cans of Folgers in your Trump-voting parent’s cabinet, and bags of locally roasted, indie, micro-roastery coffee in the average Bernie Sanders supporter’s pantry—it’s because one of them is making purchases that involve mindfulness and empathy, and one is not. These are not coincidences. Even buying from a legitimately small business in general is against the Trumpian mindset, which decrees that shoving your dollars at corporate oligarchs and mega-corporations is the epitome of patriotism because these billionaires are magnanimous “job providers.”

So in the end—who is even the market for artisanal, right-wing coffee? And why the hell did I just spend 3,000 words to dissect a concept so inherently ludicrous?

Ugh. If only there was a Liberal Starbucks across the street from the Paste office, I could drown my sorrows in a Redistribution of Wealth blend venti frappuccino, but I guess I’ll just have to settle for patronizing the local roastery down the street instead.

You know, the one that just makes good coffee. For anyone. Like a non-insane business would.

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