Coming soon….

December 29, 2010

KONE Review

V60 Guide

December 9, 2010

Here’s a quick little V60 video I did this afternoon. Bit of update to how i’ve been making coffee day to day.

I’ve also been logging some data on method of brewing and country of origin over at Daytum. Right now it’s a bit monotone as I only have my V60 with me and an In My Mug subscription, but it will be more varied once i’m back in the states with coffee and brew method choices.


Cold Brew, Hot Bloom

October 5, 2010

I’ve been playing around with a cold brew method this week that’s been in Coffee Blog purgatory for a couple of months. Jesse Kahn (of World Bean) and Jesse Raub (of Intelligentsia Millennium Park) tweeted back and forth a while back about this method, but it was hard to get a good handle on brew ratios or the thinking behind the concept in general. I tried it back then with some terrible over-extracted results, any number of things could have gone wrong but I’ll just blame it on my parents Capresso Infinity Grinder that has been heading downhill for quite a while now. Enter a new Bitter Press post by Jesse Raub on the whole concept, based on the experiments he did back in Mid-August. I will HIGHLY recommend reading his blog post before mine for some photos as well as better general intro. In fact, I would just highly recommend reading his blog in general, but even more so now. Anyways, this is just a bit of a catalogue of my experiences, would love some similar experiments! It really doesn’t require fancy equipment which is nice. I used a couple of 500ml highball glasses and my Hario V60 to filter everything in this experiment but you could easily use many other kinds of filtration.

I did two brews yesterday with some leftover Guatemala El Bosque (RD Sep 24) and El Salvador La Illusion (RD Sep 17) from Has Bean’s In My Mug subscription.
For both cups I did a 30 second Hot Bloom with 50ml over 30 grams of coffee, with 250ml cold water on top at the 30 second mark for an 8 hour Cold Brew steep time in Room Temperature. Something I have found helpful when cold brewing is brewing at room temperature rather than brewing in the fridge. Room temperature brewing seems to pull out more of the coffees character as well as shorter brewing times due to the warmer water. The La Illusion cup was nothing special (Coffee was 2 1/2 weeks old) it was still delicious with some winey berry notes and the general cocoa iced coffee taste. The La Bosque on the other hand was ridiculously delicious with notes of spiced apple and creamy cocoa, a super juicy and complex iced coffee; one of the more delicious things I’ve had in a while!

Today I did a side by side of Cold Brew vs Hot Bloom cold brew with Has Bean’s new Kicker Espresso blend (40% El Salvador La Illusion, 40% El Salvador Alaska, 20% Ethiopian Yirgacheffe) the blend descriptors are “Oranges, Sherbet, Lemonade, and Difficult”. 100ml hot bloom for 30 seconds, 35 grams of Coffee, 10 hour cold brew in Room Temperature with 250ml water. Whereas the Cold Brew was flat on the aromatics and had the “Toddy Taste” of cocoa and wet coffee grounds in the sink, it still retained a bit of citrus that is definitely a major player in the blend. On the other side, the Hot Bloom/Cold Brew cup had some rich dark cherry aromatics that reminded me of the rum soaked cherry garnish from a Manhattan. In the cup, the citrus wasn’t as prominent, but heavily sweet in a lemonade like quality with just a subtle pucker of lemon on the finish, as well you could taste some of the distinct raisin-berry flavor (reminiscent of the La Illusion Cascara) in the cup which might be a flip side of the cherry in the aroma. Also a delicious cup but I think I would shorten the brew time back to 8 hours in order to pull out more of the wonderful juicy quality as well as more citrus.

I may stop experimenting with this brewing method after some great results with it due to winter swiftly approaching here in Norther Ireland, but those in warmer bits of the world (read: Texas/Houston) should play around with this some more and let me know what you think! Again all the credit goes to Jesse Kahn and Jesse Raub for their launching point and their generosity in sharing their experiences with it!

Brew Guide

September 26, 2010

V60 brew

Sorry for the lack of posts. Working quite a bit this summer at Catalina Coffee didn’t allow much time for blogging! We pushed a slow-bar program at Catalina this summer with a premium offerings list as well as the beginnings of a new coffee buying philosophy focusing on buying small amounts of premiums lots rather than larger buys of bread and butter long term lots. As well I worked on putting together a brewing guide for our Customers and Baristas that is a starting point for people buying brewing equipment. I’ll link a download of this 2 page simple document at the end of this post, as well i will eventually format some photos for an online version whenever i can figure out the best way to do it! Since all this shop business i’ve moved to Belfast for a semester for a study abroad program, which has allowed me to travel a bit to London and see some amazing sights and inspiring coffee shops. Hopefully i can do a rap up post of my coffee shop experiences in Europe sometime this winter. Thanks for the continued reading despite my lack of attention to this space!

Micro-Lots at Catalina

May 19, 2010

There are two new Coffees here at Catalina Coffee in Houston: Kenya Karuya AA Micro-Lot and Organic Costa Rica Natural Process Las Lajas. Serving them in house as slow bar only, choose V60, Clever, or Press Pot. $5 for the Costa Rica and $4.50 for the Kenya.

Sipping on a V60 i made myself right now of each coffee. The Costa Rica is everything you want from an amazing natural, sugar sweetness, winey acidity with a hint of lime, strawberry and red grape with an amazing finish. The Kenya is a super crisp coffee with a citrus acidity and a hint at some tropical fruit, honey and black currant. Come down by 2201 Washington Houston, TX 77007 and try them out!


May 1, 2010

that’s what my readers won’t have known about me, the comma of my breathing henceforward, without continuity but without a break, the changed time of my writing, graphic writing, through having lost its interrupted verticality, almost with every letter, to be bound better and better but be read less and less well over almost twenty years, like my religion about which nobody understands anything, any more than does my mother who asked other people a while ago, not daring to talk to me about it, if I still believer in God, nutrierat filios totiens eos parturiens, quotiens abs te deuiare cernebat [“She had brought up her children, being in labor with them each time she saw them wandering away from Thee” Augustine’s Confessions IX, ix, 22], but she must have known that the constancy of God in my life is called by other names, so that i quite rightly pass for an atheist, the omnipresence to me of what I call God in my absolved, absolutely private language being neither that of an eyewitness nor that of a voice doing anything other than talking to me without saying anything, nor a transcendent law or an immanent schechina [divine presence/spirit, grammatically feminine], that feminine figure of a Yahweh who remains so strange and so familiar to me, but the secret I am excluded from, when the secret consists in the fact that you are held to secrecy by those who know your secret, how many are there, and do not dare admit to you that this is no longer a secret for them, that they share with you the open secret, letting you reckon that they know without saying, and, from that point on, what you have neither the right nor the strength to confess, it is just as useless to make it known, to hand it over to this public notoriety you are the first and only one to be excluded from, properly theological hypothesis of a blank sacrifice sending the bidding up to infinity, God coming to circulate among the unavowables, unavowable as he remains himself, like a son not bearing my name, like a son not bearing his name, like a son not bearing a name, and if, to give rise to this beyond of the name, in view and by reason of this unacceptable appellation of self for my mother has become silenced without dying, I write that there is too much love in my life, emphasizing too much, the better and the worse, that would be true, love will have got the better of me, my faithfulness stands any test, I am faithful even to the test that does harm, to my euthanasias.-Jacques Derrida in Jacques Derrida

Callid has shared a wonderful video of Caputo interviewing Derrida in 2002 about this very text and Derrida’s wording of “rightly passing for an atheist”.

V-60 Brew Guide

May 1, 2010

A short little video i did last night to show a way to brew with the V60 i’ve been really enjoying!

Houston Coffee

April 3, 2010

Didn’t get the chance to do any of the posts i had ideas for over the break, but it’s alright. Over my two weeks I worked at Catalina Coffee as well as Tuscany Coffee and have really enjoyed the chance to be back making tons of coffee and working on being deliberate and repeatable in all my brewing habits.
Also had a chance to go over to a really great Homebarista’s house and he generously let me use his modified La Marzocco GS3 and his beautiful Elektra Nino grinder. I had never used a Machine that had a PID, and had the chance to try a couple different espresso profiles that i have read about as well as try Brown Coffee Co’s absolutely stunning Chinati Espresso which uniquely has “2 coffees roasted over a three day period, using four distinct roast profiles to broaden the spectrum of sweetness and versatility these amazing coffees have to offer”. If my memory serves, the two coffees were a Kenya from the Nyeri district and Ethiopia Amaro Gayo.
I ordered some great coffees from Has Bean as well, the Colombia Nariño Consaca and the Bolivia Machacamarca. Both were stunning, the Columbia had an amazingly sweet grape juice overlay as well as green melon notes. The Bolivia was amazingly smooth with dark chocolate tones and just a hint of citrus, sometimes close to lime sometimes orange zest. I’ve been stunned by all the coffees i’ve ordered and is well worth the shipping fees from the UK!

Anyways, short little update about what i should have been writing longer posts on..

Good Friday

April 1, 2010

Arkansas Good Friday
by Franz Wright


Everyone knows what the cross means, or will
———-before long

It is the body

It resembles the first stick-figure depictions
———of it found in caves (some
———with the heads of birds)

Depictions reproduced to this day by young children
———just learning to draw

Its aerodynamic properties ought to be obvious I suppose

to us,
the wingless

How many years we have been carrying it
And before too much longer it will reveal itself
the source of a forsakenness and agony
nobody would have dared foresee
I saw it
over twenty years ago

Every day as the darkness came down on New York
I went up to my father and saw

(More and more I meet him
in the mirror, it is his blood I have
to clean up if I shave–…)

And I was born just as I found him there

a little bald
toothless man
not for long though
(I refer to Mother Morphine’s left tit)


Now I’ll tell you something you don’t know, you hurt
by the past, just like me, crushed
by the future and blind
to the present,
to the moment–

But there is nothing you don’t know
I got up every morning here
a long way from home
and cried for ten minutes
then showered and dressed
and got back down to work
assisted, on occasion, by one or two magical mystery


I can tell you this
Who dwarfs my pain I cling to
the genuinely broken
and poor
And I cling to the Before
The spirit face
behind the face
yearning for light
the water and the light
And I am flowing back to the Before, the infinite
years which transpired while I was not
here, and did not know
I was not

———I came just like you
from inconceivableness, the eternal
before-we-arrived, flowing
from God’s mouth, and come here to say
“this world” and
————-“God,” as if
they needed
——– And what lies beyond is no doubt the beginning
I wouldn’t know but I’m going
to find out
The what lies beyond
this loneliness and panic
I call dying, time, remorse, this cold
and purifying
fire, which hurts so much, which burns
away the world and all I was
who walked and breathed and spoke
how real it all seemed
for a few years, but I was always
immortal and will be
once more, when I return
to the infinite time
which elapsed before I was conceived;
when the heavenward face is burned away
and its scared eyes
and its tears
and its euphoria, which no one can imagine
(wrong: someone in love can imagine!)
And I have heard God’s silence like the sun
now I long to return to it
no matter my infantile clinging
to this gorgeous material of such early wisteria and
———lilacs, the wind
in the redbud and light-giving new heart-shaped leaves
music visible if completely unheard, I’ll return
The angel’s going to raise his arms and sing that time is
———no more
nor tears: that numbered
sea of them is gone–
now there is a new sea, a new earth, a new sky–
and I will know what to say at the end: What end?
And I can add I found this world sufficiently miraculous
———-for me, before I’m changed.

Shrove Tuesday

February 16, 2010

We remember the long dark nights of Ashdod;
They were long because you stood
in the Philistine place passively;
They were dark because the gods of the Philistines
seemed to prevail.
And now we face the long, dark days of Lent:
to ponder your strange passivity
to hold deep the suffering of Jesus
to grasp afresh our fragile morality, that we too will die;
to move beyond ourselves to notice the raw loss
connected to your absence,
We name the brutality among us;
We make the greed so close to us;
We see the poor, the homeless, the exploited,
while we enjoy the easiness of the leisure class.
And then – dark and long – our eyes shift back to Ashdod;
We wait, a heavy edging toward hope,
not yet as light as hope,
as heavy as absence.
We pray in the name of the crucified. Amen.

(A Walter Brueggeman prayer for Shrove Tuesday in “Awed to Heaven, Rooted in Earth”)