A self-proclaimed “Top 5 Dead or Alive” MC and member of the iconic rap trio The Lox, Jason “Jadakiss” Phillips has been releasing classic songs and verses since the mid-90s.
Outside of his music career, Jadakiss is thriving as an entrepreneur with several business ventures such as Juices For Life with his rhyme partner Styles P. Recently, he launched Kiss Cafe, a family-owned coffee brand with his father Bob Phillips, and his son Jaewon Phillips.
The company’s mission is to connect with the growing community of coffee lovers, by delivering the freshest and most flavorful blends of coffee-based products to the market.
For as long as he can remember, Jadakiss has had a love for coffee. Although he had opportunities to get involved in other business endeavors, establishing a coffee brand with his family is one of his greatest accomplishments.
“When I was a kid, my dad would take me to school and give me a light and sweet coffee with a butter roll,” shared the rapper. “I just liked the taste of it. But as I started working out and becoming more health conscious, I really started appreciating coffee. Drinking it would help me get through all my radio interviews and I started seeing the other benefits of it which made me start loving it more.”
“I was just intrigued by how deep a cup of coffee is, ''he added. “There’s a lot that happens with coffee like growing it, picking it and sourcing it, and the different regions where it grows. It’s so many things about coffee that the world probably doesn't know. I wanted to have that connection with it and step outside of my realm. I could have gotten into the liquor business or done something in the cannabis industry. Instead of going those routes, I wanted to do this, especially with my dad and my son.”
His dad Bob Phillips has been in the coffee industry in various capacities for over 40 years. Since 2002, he’s been the CEO of Caturra Corp., an importing and trading firm for international green coffee. It’s been a dream come true for him to share his love of coffee with the world and to be in business with his family. Jadakiss' son Jaewon has been working in the business since he graduated from Clark Atlanta University in 2018.
“My career started in 1977, shortly after Jason was born," recalls Jadakiss' father. “I worked for the coffee division of Maxwell House in the corporate offices in White Plains, NY. Then, I was promoted to the office of Green Coffee as a buyer and that's where I was introduced to the world of coffee. Later on, I went to work for a big Brazilian exporting company that's probably the largest instant coffee maker in Brazil. Eventually, I started my own company and I've been trading coffee for over 25 years.”
“Upon entering the field, I discovered just how large the coffee industry was. It’s the second-largest traded commodity in the world. I had no prior knowledge about coffee except that I drank it in the mornings,” he continued. “I think a lot of people take for granted the amount of capital, the amount of effort, and the number of people that are involved with that simple little beverage that you have every day.”
Kiss Café’s first offering is “Beijo” (the Portuguese word for kiss) beans, which is a medium-dark roast Arabica blend sourced from Central America. It's currently available in both whole bean and ground options.
The brand's logo on the bag features three intertwined coffee beans which is a tribute to the Phillips family legacy and their tradition of working in the coffee industry.
For those who are new to the world of coffee, Jadakiss offered some expert advice about how to begin enjoying a cup of joe.
"Definitely put three sugars and cream in your coffee when you first start drinking it. You gotta build up your palate before you can drink it black,” Jadakiss laughed. “Some coffee snobs think that it's sacrilegious to use milk and sugar. But to me, it's all a matter of taste. The whole beauty of coffee is that it's an individual thing.”