Meet John Lynn Head Coffee Roaster at Hugo Coffee

“I have just always loved coffee. As a kid, my granny would serve me ‘coffee milk’ so I could drink coffee with the adults.”

John’s roots are in Louisiana, Baton Rouge, to be exact. After his father’s job relocated John’s family to Utah in 2003, John completed his high school education and then entered college. His need to be gainfully employed led him to work in a coffee shop. He would later bounce around to many different coffee shops, develop an interest in coffee roasting and then land at Hugo Coffee Roasters in 2015.

“I discovered that you could actually buy raw coffee online in one-pound bags and roast them in an air popcorn popper. It actually pops just like popcorn, in fact, a dark roast will pop twice. I was roasting and drinking my own coffee. I discovered that what I was roasting in the popcorn popper was better than the coffee I was serving in the coffee shop at the time. That kick-started my interest in coffee roasting.”

Today, John Lynn is the head coffee roaster at Hugo Coffee Roasters in Park City, Utah.

Hugo owner, Claudia McMullin, purchased then Silver Bean Coffee Shop (later changing the name of the business in 2013 to Hugo Coffee, after Claudia’s own rescue pup). John was the head roaster at the time. A few years later, Claudia offered John a job in 2015, and together they launched Hugo Coffee Roasters. John loves the mission of Hugo coffee and welcomed the opportunity and creativity that come with the job. Hugo Coffee donates 10% of its profits to dog rescue organizations.
Hugo Coffee Roasters has six different roasts as well as Dog Daze cold brew, and a rotating specialty roast. The specialty lot involves the purchasing of only a few hundred pounds of a coffee bean that is unique and roasting it up. It is served until it is gone, so it is continuously changing. Hugo’s coffee roasts are all sweet and smooth coffees, with none that are overly aggressive, bitter, or burnt.

Raw coffee beans are sourced from all over the world, Brazil, Columbia, Mexico, Costa Rica, Peru, Ethiopia, and Tanzania, routinely. Coffee is chosen based on fair trade and detailed information on how the plantations are managed, from healthcare to fair labor practices. In addition, the coffee profiles must fit the standards for the customers. Much care is taken when roasting each batch. New varietals are brought in based on feedback from customers, as well as beans in season. Finally, John personally samples coffees from other roasters who may offer new varietals and growing regions he has never tried before.

“We wanted to create a group of coffees that are really approachable, easy-drinking coffees. We also wanted to keep everything as consistent as possible and use coffee beans to create the same flavor profiles over and over. Especially with how much tourism comes through Park City. People can stay at a hotel and drink our coffee and then drink our coffee a year later, and it will taste the same. I want people to know that there was a lot of energy put into every cup they are drinking.”

John Lynn and his Reservation rescue dog Rivers, enjoy spending time outdoors in their spare time.

Fishing, backpacking, and camping are tops on their list as well as taking in concerts, and in fact, the Dog Daze cold brew packs were created so John could take them along while backpacking.

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