Last week I mentioned we would be receiving a new Ethiopian Sidamo coffee. It arrived late Tuesday and had barely gotten into the shop before we were unloading it from the pallet and preparing it for roasting.
We just did a tasting of it and WOW!!! So full of blueberry!!! And smoothhhhh!!! Very very clean cup.
We sampled it next to the Dry Process Ethiopian Yirgacheffe which is also incredibly smooth but with so much going on! Hits one's tongue immediately and dances around all those taste buds.
Come on in and try them both. They both excel brewed as pour-overs so that would be my recommendation.
The big news this week, aside from the stellar Ethiopian coffees, is that our coffees will soon be available through Amazon.com. Stay tuned for more information.
New products scheduled to arrive next week, just in time for Father's Day:
While the weather can't make up its mind if it wants to be 100º or 60º, it's perfect for drinking coffee. Tomorrow looks like another perfect day for coffee as well as the St. Johns Farmers Market.
Stop by and get fueled and warmed before heading to the market.
Meanwhile, keep the coffee flowing.
Mount & Crew
It's time again for the St. Johns Farmers Market to open. The season begins this Saturday, June 4th and continues through November 19th.
It sounds like it will be perfect weather for kicking off the farmers market season. Lots of sun (and heat). We'll be ready with an abundance of cold- brewed coffees, teas, snacks and treats.
One of the most difficult realizations of the coffee business is the seasonality of the various coffees. Especially when we find those that are incredibly special and which we come to love so much. We enjoy them and before we know it, they're gone.
Such is the case with two coffees we've had, the dry-processed Ethiopian Sidamo and a coffee we've purchased directly from the farm in Brazil (Brazil Grota Sao Pedro).
However, I'm happy to report that both will be returning next week to our offering list. They represent two entirely different profiles on the flavor spectrum.
The dry-processed Ethiopian Sidamo has a prominent blueberry note with orange, tamarind, toffee, taffy, nut, and a, soft body.
The Brazilian coffee, if anything like last year's crop, was like drinking creme brulèe. Medium roast with a wonderful caramel sweetness, chocolate and almond and oh so smooth!
We also have another new coffee from Ethiopia. It's a dry-processed Ethiopian Yirgacheffe. As with the Sidamo, it's fuller in body while still possessing many of the floral notes of the washed Yirgacheffe which, we also have in stock.
Can you tell I'm a fanatic for Ethiopian coffees???
Now that summer gardening has begun, people are often requesting used coffee grounds to be used in their compost bins. Did you know you can also use them as insect repellants and wood stains. Check out this article - http://theheartysoul.com/coffee-ground-uses/
Furthermore, I recently read an article where a group in Great Britain has begun collecting tons and tons of used coffee grounds from Britain's coffee shops, processing them and creating pellets that can then be used to heat homes. Check out this article - http://cleantechnica.com/2015/09/27/recycling-coffee-grounds-home-heating-pellets/
Memorial Day is generally the kick-off to a season of bbq'ing so I thought I'd share a recipe for dry rub for any type of meat you choose. Oh and of course, one of the ingredients is coffee. Duh!
Many of you probably remember the amazing Brazil Grota Sao Pedro we had last year but sold out. Well, I have good news. It will be returning to our line-up in the very near future. Last time we described it as being like drinking Cremè Brulee and I have a feeling this year's crop will be comparable. Perhaps more like Tiramisu. :)
If the Memorial Day weather proves too hot to serve your guests hot coffee, consider brewing some cold-brew coffee. We have a large selection of Toddy Brewers and accessories and are happy to teach you the process. It's quite simple. Or, if you decide you'd like to serve something with a little "kick" to it, consider a coffee martini. We can show you how to make those as well! They're delicious!!!
Meanwhile, have a great weekend and keep the coffee flowing.
Mount & Crew
There are a few things to top off this week's newsletter. First of all, big congrats to our customer, GiGi's Cafe in the Hillsdale neighborhood of Portland. They were included amongst the top 15 breakfast locations in Portland this past week!
Secondly, in addition to now offering fresh-made jams, two days ago we added fresh-made hummus. Many have requested an option to the cream cheese spreads for bagels. The hummus is delicious, very nicely balanced with a nice texture.
There are of course, many ways to brew coffee and we're constantly asked which is the best. One of my personal favorites is the Stove Top Espresso Maker, aka, Moka Pot.
The Moka Pot brews an incredibly rich cup of coffee (I'm not talking mug here). The size categories of Moka Pots is shown in cups but they are referring to demitasse size cups.
Many customers have told me they purchased a Moka Pot but they don't particularly care for the taste because it seems bitter. When asking about their brewing technique, it becomes apparent why this is.
Some have said they've used a powdery fine espresso grind that they've tamped into the filter basket, compacting the powdery grounds similar to what a barista does with a conventional espresso machine with porta filters.
The first thing to understand is that these Moka Pots are NOT espresso machines and as such, function differently.
A friend forwarded me an article this past week that appeared in Splendid Table and which describes the process of using a Moka Pot. I will include the link so you can read the article. http://www.splendidtable.org/story/tips-great-coffee
However, my method differs from what they suggest so I will attempt to describe that so you can try both approaches and see what works best for you.
To start with, I fill the base with fresh, cold water up to the bottom of the threads. I then insert the filter basket, hold over the sink and invert the base to dispense any excess water.
The next step is to grind the coffee. After much experimentation, I have settled on a coarser grind than what many suggest. I use a grind just a bit coarser than one would use for a "fine/cone filter" type grind.
I also found that by using less coffee, one gets a better flavor from the Moka Pot. I pour the ground coffee into the filter basket so it forms a bit of a pyramid with the sides tapering down to being about 1/4" below the top of the filter basket.
Give it a gentle shake to even the grounds then tightly screw the top half onto the base. I DO NOT TAMP the grounds as is done with conventional espresso machines with porta filters.
Set the Moka Pot on a burner and set the heat to a medium setting. Do not set to a high setting. Just be patient. This is the perfect time to select your cup and any desired accoutrements (twist of lemon peel, sugar cube, etc.)
Once you start to hear the contents "rumbling", turn off the heat and let the Moka Pot just sit for another minute or so to finish the brewing process.
The final step is to pour into the cup of your choice, grab a copy of the New York Times, sit back and savor the delicious coffee.
As with anything food related, taste is a very subjective thing so I would encourage you to experiment. Just know there is potential for a great cup of coffee from the Moka Pot.
And this just in.... There have been a few times since the inception of this business where I've had to "eat crow". Well, another of those times has arrived. As most of you know, we used to have "frequent flyer" cards for whole bean coffee as well as beverages.
We received a lot of comments from customers expressing both pros and cons to doing something like that. So, we transitioned to a digital version of customer loyalty program. However, that didn't work nearly as smoothly as I'd hoped so we abandoned the digital version.
I believe rewarding repeat customers is an important aspect of doing business so we have gone BACK to the original punchcard. They just arrived about 30 minutes ago. The details remain the same. After ten purchases of either beans or beverages, the customer will receive a 20% discount toward the purchase of anything we offer.
That's right, anything - cups, hoodies, grinders, etc. Next time you're in, be sure to ask for yours. And, we will continue to honor any of the old "frequent flyer" cards. And, if you'll post a review of us on Yelp, we'll add an additional punch!
Many thanks and keep the coffee flowing!
Mount & Crew
Well, Christmas is officially upon us.
It's been an incredibly busy week and just when we thought we'd finished roasting, realized this morning that we needed more so the roaster is fired up and raring to go.
We still have a great supply of organic and fair trade coffees and will be replenishing things as the day goes on. We also have a nice selection of brewing equipment and supplies as well as Mexican pottery, travel mugs, stocking stuffer size bags of coffee and various other coffee related items.
About a week ago, we began offering jars of honey from P&P Apiary. It's the same honey we use and talk about local! The hives are about 1 1/2 miles from the shop so, it is LOCAL! And delicious. It sells for $10.95 for a pint size jar.
After today, we'll be closed for the weekend but we'll be back, ready to roll at 6 am Monday morning.
I hope everyone has a great holiday weekend and we'll look forward to seeing you next week.
Many thanks as always,
Mount & Crew
Here we are, the week before Christmas. There's still time to get that someone special their coffee related treats, whether it be whole bean coffee, t-shirts, hoodies, mugs or whatever.
You may notice I'm a bit "late" getting this message sent out. The day got off to a very rocky start when I learned my lead barista had been involved in a nearly head-on wreck on Hwy. 30 as he was headed to the shop to open.
Luckily and remarkably, he's ok. I'm sure he'll be very sore tomorrow. But his car is totaled. Despite that rough start, he walked to the shop and finished out his shift without missing a beat! What an amazing guy!
We received our shipment of Mexican pottery this week and it is, as usual, beautiful. All the items we received are new to us. We have water pitchers, large fruit bowls, serving platters, cream pitchers, sugar bowls, flower vases, etc.
And, we moved one step closer to implementing our new display wall. All the shelves are up and are filled with bags of whole bean coffees and coffee related merchandise. Some have remarked they miss the chalkboard with all the varieties of coffees listed and, I agree. We will be bringing that back and incorporating it as soon as we're able. We never intended to do away with it permanently.
The ceramic logo coffee mugs are scheduled to arrive Tuesday, just in time for Christmas. And, the ever popular stocking stuffer bags of coffee are back. Come and get 'em!
Just a reminder to stock up on whole bean coffee and any brewing supplies before Christmas. We will be closed Friday, Saturday and Sunday the 25th - 27th.
We stocked up on filters, Toddy brewers, AeroPresses, burr grinders, and a multitude of other coffee brewing equipment which will satisfy even the most discriminating on your list.
In the event I don't get to see some of you personally before next week, I'd like to take this opportunity to wish each and everyone of you a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. I'm very grateful for you all and how you've supported this business that we're so passionate about. We couldn't have done it without you.
Many many thanks,
Mount & Crew
Well, this certainly feels like the perfect Halloween weather. Blustery, with rain and lots of leaves on the ground. We have the perfect beverage solutions to ward off this cool, wet weather.
Saturday, we'll be doing a repeat of last year for the local kiddos. From 1-3 tomorrow we'll be serving up complimentary hot chocolates for the trick-or-treaters of St. Johns. St. Johns Main Street has organized a "Trick-or-Treating" extravaganza where various St. Johns businesses will be handing out a variety of treats to young children in a safe and friendly atmosphere. It turned out to be a very popular event last year so I would suggest arriving early.
Last week I mentioned the Coffee Fest event which took place here in Portland this year. I was finally able to get down there on Sunday and saw a lot of great things, several of which we'll be offering in the coming weeks.
The first item we'll be adding is pre-packaged oatmeal from Straw Propeller Gourmet Foods located in Redmond, Oregon. I've wanted to offer some other food options for a long time and I believe these will be a great addition.
Their oatmeals and mueslis are gluten free with no additives or preservatives and are absolutely delicious. (I consider myself to be somewhat of an oatmeal aficionado since I've made and eaten it every morning for the past 100 years.)
I've tasted other pre-packaged oatmeals and like a lot of things, are typically overly sweetened and just leave a bad taste in one's mouth. Not the case with Straw Propeller's oatmeals and mueslis. We should have them in the shop beginning Tuesday or Wednesday of next week so look for them.
Another change we'll be making beginning this next week is we're going to be changing our checkout system. I realize this probably seems irrelevant to most people but what I hope to accomplish is streamline the check-out process so wait times are minimized. For those of you who participate in our "frequent flier" program, don't worry, we'll still be able to retrieve previous rewards.
A lot of you have requested we offer travel mugs so I'm in the process of selecting some that we'll be able to offer. I'll keep you posted once the details have been worked out.
Already in stock are a new selection of t-shirts in both women's and men's styles as well as the very popular hoodies.
Many who have been in the shop have marveled at the terrariums available from Bestow. Now you can learn to create your own. On November 12th from 6-8pm, Nyki will offer a workshop on creating one's own tropical Terrariums. Call Bestow for more information. 503.208.4395.
Painter Jeanne Levasseur, whose paintings have been on display in the shop for the past couple months came in the other day and swapped out everything with new work so I would encourage everyone to come in and check it out. As with her other work, it's stunning.
Just a few more weeks remain for The Coffee Trust, La Roya Recover project so please come in to learn about this devastating blight and help support the coffee farmers of Guatemala so they can gain valuable skills in organic solutions to mitigate this disease.
That's about it for this week. Please stay tuned for updated information on new products and coffees. Meanwhile, take care and keep the coffee flowing.
Mount & Crew