Picking up a bag of Seaport Coffee in a grocery store on a recent trip to the coast, I noticed that the label now reads "100% Arabica." I don't know if that represents a change in packaging or a change in the beans, but the coffee wasn't half bad. I got the "Between Roasts" variety, which is halfway between dark roast and medium roast. It was mainly the nostalgia factor that made me buy it. I'm not saying it's going to replace the Katz Coffee organic Central American medium roast I drink at home. But I love the blue bag and the history.

The Seaport brand is owned by the Texas Coffee Company, which was founded in Beaumont in 1921 by Charles J. Fertitta, Sr.  In 1926, Fertitta took on two partners, R. C. Maceo and Joseph S. Serio. Perhaps you've heard of the Fertitta and Maceo families? They have long been prominent business people on the Gulf Coast.

The company moved to a building on Port Arthur Road (now Martin Luther King Parkway) in 1926 and has been at the same address in Beaumont ever since. The equipment in the facility is new, but the old hardwood floors and original steel beams are still there. 

Seaport’s parent company, Texas Coffee Company, also manufactures a line of spices under the TexJoy label. One TexJoy blend inspired by "herbes de Provence" is marketed under the name "herbs du Beaumont." But more about the fascinating TexJoy story another time.

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