Shellback Espresso: Cross the Equator One Mug at a Time

Shellback Espresso: Cross the Equator One Mug at a Time

August 19, 2020

Weak coffee? Send it to Davy Jones! 

At Fire Dept. Coffee we’re always on the lookout for new ideas when it comes to the best beans and grounds for our hardworking customers, from our Skull-Crushing Espresso to our unique spirit-infused coffee

The newest addition to our crew? Our Shellback Espresso. Come aboard and find out all about it!

Fire Dept. Coffee’s new Shellback Espresso: a homage to navy traditions

Those of you who’ve been following us for a while (you know who you are!) might have already read this somewhere, but, if this is the first time you hear about us, let us tell you a bit about our background and connection with the Navy.

Fire Dept. Coffee is run by firefighters and veteran-owned. Before becoming a full-time firefighter and paramedic, our founder Luke Schneider proudly served in the US Navy from 2004 to 2008.

We decided to craft this new coffee blend to honor this experience and show everyone how tightly connected the Navy and firefighters actually are. 

Like Luke says, “Every sailor is trained as a firefighter so there’s a natural connection between shipboard firefighters and civilian firefighters. Both know that coffee is essential for working long hours on little sleep.”

But what’s behind this unusual name? A special tradition, that’s what it is!

What is a Shellback in the Navy?

What is a shellback in the navy?

In the Navy, a Shellback is a sailor who’s crossed the coveted equator line. Celebrated with line-crossing ceremonies all over the world, this is a centuries-old ritual that populates folklore and legends shared by seafarers.

The trusty and experienced Shellback who, before crossing the equator, used to be only a Pollywog becomes a son or daughter of Neptune. 

The legend goes that they earn the approval of the god of the sea by showing him their seaworthiness and paying him proper homage.

Are you wondering who else is present for this ceremony? None other than Davy Jones, of course! The mythological spirit representing the bottom of the sea definitely wouldn’t want to miss out on it.

Luke was also awarded the prestigious Golden Shellback status, only reserved for sailors who have crossed the equator at the 180th meridian. Ahoy!

Here’s what’s behind Fire Dept. Coffee’s Shellback Espresso

Shellback Espresso

To honor this tradition and its ties to the equator, at Fire Dept. Coffee we decided to craft a unique blend of beans from Brazil, Indonesia and Colombia. 

What do they all have in common, you ask? Simple: they’re harvested from locations along the equator line, allowing you to cross it metaphorically each time you enjoy a cup of Shellback Espresso!

The result is a rich and strong medium roast that you can use both for espresso and traditional drip coffee.

If you want to impress a Navy sailor or a fellow coffee lover, check out the Shellback Espresso t-shirts, stickers or challenge coins in our shop, too. 

Always roasted to order, our new Shellback Espresso is available for purchase as whole beans, medium grounds, or even as a handy subscription.

Bring centuries of traditions and the unique profiles of the best beans from different parts of the equator into your morning coffee. 

Become a virtual Shellback and get ready to unleash Neptune’s fury on anyone who dares to talk to you before you’ve finished your first mug of joe of the day!





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