Director, Coffee Operations
A self-proclaimed, “specialty coffee nerd,” Mondo Rodriguez is passionate about coffee. But Swell Coffee Co.’s director of coffee operations is not a coffee snob. Rodriguez likes a variety of brews, colors, and flavors. Sometimes he drinks his Joe black; other times, he stirs in a little bit of cream.
Before joining Swell Coffee Co., Rodriguez worked for years as a specialist welder, a job that required him to travel all over the world for weeks and months at a time, instructing other welders how to weld. During that time, he drank a lot of coffee.
In 2012, Rodriguez was living in Portland, Oregon with his wife and dog. They vacationed in Mission Beach for two weeks that summer and loved it. They made a habit of stopping at Café Mono, now Swell Coffee Co. During their stay in San Diego, they became morning regulars at the beach café where they loved the coffee. Vacation ended but they couldn’t stop thinking about Mission Beach and that café. So on the way home, they decided to move to San Diego – and that’s what they did a year later.
For the next two years, Rodriguez continued his welding career and continued visiting the café. But his career path changed when the café’s owner asked him to join his coffee business, Swell Coffee Roasting.
Rodriguez started working in the roasting facility in its very early days. He’s humbled to have roasted in a quiet corner of the building, cleaned cold brew kegs, brewed cold brew, and made deliveries all over San Diego. He went on to oversee the shop before becoming Director of Coffee operations.
He’s excited to see what’s brewing next for him and customers at Swell Coffee Co.