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#21 Rich Kennedy

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 09:32 AM

QUOTE(Jeff Kolb @ Jan 10 2007, 03:51 PM) View Post
Once you're beyond Folgers, the most important factor in coffee (by far!) is freshness. There's a lot of decent coffee here in the SF Bay Area, from bigger guys like Peet's, to a number of smaller roasters. But finding really good coffee is a little tough. One thing to realize is that some "Roasteries" or "coffee roasting companies" don't actually roast their own beans, meaning that you'll never get that truly fresh cup of coffee there. You'll also have a hard time getting fresh beans at a shop like Peet's, where they have a central roasting facility that ships bags out to the retail locations (although Peet's does a pretty good job of keeping a small, relatively fresh inventory).

Your best bet for a great cup is to find a local roastery and try to get a cup of something roasted just a few hours ago. Roasting technique does make a difference, but it's pretty small compared to the drop-off in flavour that occurs 24-48hrs after roasting. Similarly for bean origin: as long as you're dealing with real Arabica beans that have been decently treated, you'll get a good cup of coffee if it's freshly roasted.

But you have to be careful of regional coffee habits. Roaming around the swankier areas of Asheville, NC a few years ago, I saw a locally owned coffee shop and deli. As I was searching for parking, I caught a huge whiff of burnt coffee. The only interpretation of the intensity was that that they were roasting there own (one of the Krogers I've worked for had a small roaster). I asked, and yes, they roast their own of everything. I ordered a cappuccino. Bland. Light tan, just like almost every cup of coffee you can purchase in western NC.

#22 Christian

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 09:54 AM

QUOTE(Rich Kennedy @ Jan 17 2007, 09:22 AM) View Post
Yes. The green label (was "Starbuck's Meridian Blend for Kirkland") is good, so is the red label espresso (but not necessarily good when used as espresso). Right now I am trying to figure out if a newer Kirkland Sumatra French Roast is better than the green. I'm not sure.


Thanks for the tip on the espresso roast, which I love to drink as regular brew. Let us know about the French Roast.

I don't go to Costco, so I wasn't aware of these other options.

#23 Christian

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 11:07 AM

QUOTE(Alan Thomas @ Jan 17 2007, 10:22 AM) View Post
If you bought these at Costco, it'll be 1-2 years before you make it through each bag...


The bag was opened this morning. I'll post the "completion date." My bet is that it'll all be gone in less than 2 months. Maybe less than 1 month.

I drink way too much coffee.

#24 Rich Kennedy

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 02:43 PM

I'm halfway through my second 3lb bag of the Sumatra French roast. I discovered it late last Fall. I bring my own coffee to work in a thermos that holds what my coffee pot says is 8 cups. I usually only make "6 cups" on off days like today. I'm the only one in the house that drinks coffee. I figure that I go through a two pound bag in just under a month, hence the attraction of excellent coffee at under $3.50 a pound.

#25 Darrel Manson

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Posted 18 January 2007 - 09:52 AM

Since I don't do coffee, I've pretty much been ingnoring this thread. Just curious if any of you have seen Black Gold and if you think it will affect your buying?

#26 Jason Panella

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Posted 18 January 2007 - 10:40 AM

QUOTE(Darrel Manson @ Jan 18 2007, 09:52 AM) View Post
Since I don't do coffee, I've pretty much been ingnoring this thread. Just curious if any of you have seen Black Gold and if you think it will affect your buying?


Haven't seen it yet, but have been meaning to (there was an advanced screening I missed a few weeks ago. Drat!) I basically know what they're talking about, and it affected my buying years ago.

Anywho, if you want great coffee at a good price, I'd suggest Grounds for Change. They roast they day they ship it to you as well. Or try to find local roasteries and see how they handle things. We get our espresso roast from a local roaster. It's amazing, and he roasts it the same day we get it.

And by the way, our coffee shop got up and running last month (which is why I've not been around these parts much). It's going very well. Our new website (which is constantly getting tweaked, and is in a transition phase at the moment) is here, and our goofy MySpace page is here.

And yes, cuppings are fun!

#27 Christian

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Posted 18 January 2007 - 11:16 AM

I haven't seen it but have been changing my food-buying and consumption habits quite a bit the past couple of years. I suppose coffee will eventually become part of that change, but for now, I just want a good roast for the money.

#28 Rich Kennedy

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Posted 11 February 2007 - 08:26 AM

I need a little help with coffee presses. Sheesh, you buy a reliable coffee maker and it works WONDERS for four or five years. And then the caraffe breaks. My coffee maker seems to be obsolete by at least two generations (full price plus shipping for a lidless caraffe at various internet supply houses and nothing on eBay. Bed Bath and Beyond doesn't stock mine anymore). We are talking KRUPS, not Black and Decker! Sorry for the rant.

In the meantime, I've gone to a coffee press which has yet to make a great cuppa. Yesterday's brew yielded solids worthy of turkish coffee. The grounds were set at the low end of course. Any suggestions? Also, does one calculate 6 oz cups a la modern coffee makers too? Solids were more reasonable at the coarsest setting today. Flavor was, well....

Edited by Rich Kennedy, 11 February 2007 - 08:27 AM.


#29 Buckeye Jones

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Posted 11 February 2007 - 07:43 PM

Rich, I abandoned the drip coffee makers after so many carafes lost the battle against gravity. Instead of the French press route, we want for an electric percolator. Unbreakable, and a darn fine pot of coffee.

#30 Clint M

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Posted 12 February 2007 - 12:29 AM

Just caught this thread for the first time. We have an embarrassment of coffee houses in Louisville now, with two or three more just opening up in the last month - one of them being a place called "Blue Mountain Coffee House".

There is an elder at my church who started a place called Sunergos, which has been quite successful. They've got some stuff online - although shipping is a tad pricey - but I highly recommend the Kenya AA, Organically Grown Sumatra Mandheling, and the house brand.

#31 gigi

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Posted 12 February 2007 - 01:01 AM

I'm on an all-nighter trying to meet a deadline. It's 0556h. I think if I had coffee right now, I might just lose my mind.

No, no. Can't have coffee. Love it to bits but it sends me that little bit more doolally than I already am, which is a little too far over the doolally line for most people, myself included.

And no, I would never contemplate drinking decaf. *sniff* poor non-coffee drinking me.

#32 dallegre

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Posted 12 February 2007 - 04:03 PM

I like Duncan Hills coffee. In the words of Dethklok, "prepare for ultimate flavor, you're gonna get some now, and scream for your cream." That stuff is brutal.



#33 Lance McLain

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Posted 12 February 2007 - 04:20 PM

QUOTE(Clint M @ Feb 12 2007, 01:29 AM) View Post
Just caught this thread for the first time. We have an embarrassment of coffee houses in Louisville now, with two or three more just opening up in the last month - one of them being a place called "Blue Mountain Coffee House".


I'm partial to "Green Mountain Coffee" myself.

regards,
-Lance


#34 Rich Kennedy

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Posted 12 February 2007 - 05:47 PM

So no one has any advice on how to coax a consistant cup of coffee out of a coffeepress? Seems like any grind lower than extreme coarse leaves significant sludge on the bottom of every cup.

OK, so I should be getting a new caraffe this week AND my wife picked up a 12 cup Krups "Brewmaster" with programmable brain (my present 10 cupper is a generation earlier than the still current, but not 'hot' Brewmaster) for $25. Apparantly it was a remaindered store return. Now I have backup in the mail, but I know for sure that my digestive tract is being coated, daily, with the sludge from my coffeepress that still tastes better than universally hidieous grocery store coffee.

#35 Jason Panella

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Posted 12 February 2007 - 11:06 PM

QUOTE(Rich Kennedy @ Feb 12 2007, 05:47 PM) View Post
So no one has any advice on how to coax a consistant cup of coffee out of a coffeepress? Seems like any grind lower than extreme coarse leaves significant sludge on the bottom of every cup.



It's fairly normal to get some sediment on the bottom of a presspot-made cup. Also, it's worth not pouring the last 1/2" out of the presspot, since it'll be ground city.

If you're using a blade grinder, it's hard to get a very consistent coarse grind; burr works much better. Blade will almost always yield some fine stuff, which leaks through into your mouth.

#36 Rich Kennedy

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Posted 13 February 2007 - 05:34 AM

QUOTE(Jason Panella @ Feb 13 2007, 01:06 AM) View Post
If you're using a blade grinder, it's hard to get a very consistent coarse grind; burr works much better. Blade will almost always yield some fine stuff, which leaks through into your mouth.

Now THAT'S a good question. I just replaced my grinder last Fall with a Cuisinart resevoir grinder. I don't know if it is a burr, but since most of those small, unmeasured grinders are blade grinders.... Are most resevoir grinders burr grinders?

#37 Christian

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Posted 08 March 2007 - 11:39 AM

QUOTE(Christian @ Jan 17 2007, 11:07 AM) View Post
QUOTE(Alan Thomas @ Jan 17 2007, 10:22 AM) View Post
If you bought these at Costco, it'll be 1-2 years before you make it through each bag...


The bag was opened this morning. I'll post the "completion date." My bet is that it'll all be gone in less than 2 months. Maybe less than 1 month.


We finished the bag a week ago. So a little less than two months.

QUOTE
Yes. The green label (was "Starbuck's Meridian Blend for Kirkland") is good, so is the red label espresso (but not necessarily good when used as espresso). Right now I am trying to figure out if a newer Kirkland Sumatra French Roast is better than the green. I'm not sure.


I did go to Costco last time and picked up a Kirkland's bean in a silver bag. I don't think it's French roast; probably Columbian. But it's really good! I'm enjoying it even more than regular Kirklands/Starbucks roast.

#38 Rich Kennedy

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Posted 08 March 2007 - 05:21 PM

Silver bag, huh? I don't know that one. I've decided that the green label "house blend is WAY better than the AA Rwandan French Roast by Kirkland.

#39 Jason Panella

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Posted 13 March 2007 - 09:18 AM

I don't think I ever followed up to some of my original comments, but our coffee shop--the Beaver Falls Coffee & Tea Co.--opened its doors on Dec. 8. We've been doing incredibly well, especially for an area that's traditionally known to be apathetic about this sort of thing. Check out our website here. (Note: yes, some of the site needs work--it's getting there!)

#40 Christian

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Posted 13 March 2007 - 10:59 AM

QUOTE(Jason Panella @ Mar 13 2007, 10:18 AM) View Post
I don't think I ever followed up to some of my original comments, but our coffee shop--the Beaver Falls Coffee & Tea Co.--opened its doors on Dec. 8. We've been doing incredibly well, especially for an area that's traditionally known to be apathetic about this sort of thing. Check out our website here. (Note: yes, some of the site needs work--it's getting there!)


That's great news, Jason! You must be stocking Sweet 'N Low. smile.gif