Many thanks for your on-going support!
Mount & Crew
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/
This week we'd like to welcome another new member to our staff. In addition to a passion for excellent coffee, Kirk Sanchez brings a nice quiet energy and attention to detail and I believe is going to be a nice fit here at the shop.
This Saturday is the 54th annual St. Johns Parade and 10th annual St. Johns Bizarre. The past few years we've been blessed with beautiful, sunny weather for these events but it doesn't look like we're going to have a repeat performance of that this year.
These two events draw thousands of people come from miles around because it is the proverbial "small-town" parade filled with marching bands, car clubs, etc.
In any regard, we'll be here ready to serve lots of organic and fair trade coffees, both hot and cold-brewed as well as delicious French pastries and Spielman bagels to keep you fueled.
And don't forget, we now have a nice assortment of organic juices from Columbia Gorge Organic Juices.
I'm often looking for different ways in which coffee can be used and found this recipe the other day which sounds like a splendid refreshment for a hot summer day.
Beginning today, St. Johns Coffee Roasters' coffee will be available in the Greenway location of Whole Foods Markets. If you live or work in the Southwest area of Portland/Beaverton, stop in and check out this beautiful store. It's located at 12220 SW Scholls Ferry Road - Tigard, OR 97223.
And this Saturday, Greg will be handing out samples of our coffee at Chuck's Produce in Vancouver from 11 am - 2 pm. Stop by and say hi if you're in the area and sample some REAL.GOOD.COFFEE.
We're also scheduled to receive a new shipment of the Baratza grinders tomorrow. We recently sold out but thankfully, the company is located in Seattle so it was a quick-fix. If you're not familiar with the Baratza grinders, come in and ask for a demo.
This was the grinder that changed my life.
Meanwhile, have a great weekend and keep the coffee flowing. I hope you're able to make it to the St. Johns Parade and St. Johns Bizarre.
As someone once said, "the only constant is change". This past week has been a perfect example of that.
The most obvious change for me occurred this morning when I entered the shop and experienced the absence of Bestow, our in-house floral shop.
Nyki (Bestow) has decided to move back to Southern Oregon where she originally came from. She's accepted a position in a flower shop in Ashland and I'm sure will re-invent Bestow once she gets settled and we wish her nothing but the best in this new endeavor.
Her plants and flowers added such a welcoming element to the shop and to see it all gone this morning was a bit of a shocker. However, we're already discussing ideas on re-creating that feel and adding some additional seating at the same time.
Meanwhile, we're going into what looks to be a beautiful weekend. We'll be prepared with plenty of fresh roasted organic and fair trade coffees and delectable sandwiches and treats.
Speaking of which, we have some new selections in the way of food items. Delicious berry pies from Mee Mee's Goodies, perfect for sharing and are the perfect pick-me-up for a late afternoon snack. And coming soon... Columbia Gorge Organic Juices!
Meanwhile, thanks so much for your on-going patronage and keep the coffee flowing!
Mount & Crew
So far this month's weather has held true to the saying, "Come in like a lion" and, I'm hoping, will "go out like a lamb"! It's been just a little gnarly, making for some interesting motorcycle rides into the shop each day.
However, I know that with this weekend's shift to Daylight Savings Time, it won't be long before the weather stabilizes a bit. I was just reading a book on Scotland last weekend and the author commented that his favorite part of Scotland was the weather.
He went onto say that Scotland experienced all four seasons, sometimes all within the context of a single day. I feel that's exactly what we've been experiencing here in Oregon.
There are a lot of things that took place this week. First of all, we'd like to welcome Sheridan Fruit Company to our growing list of coffee retailers. They're receiving their first order today and Taryn will be there next Wednesday the 16th from 10 am - 2 pm, handing out samples of our coffees.
If you're not familiar with Sheridan Fruit Company, they've been around since 1916 and offer quality fruits, vegetables, meats and grocery items. They also cater bridal showers, baby showers, weddings, family reunions, graduations, bbq's and more. They're located at 409 SE MLK Jr. Blvd, Portland, OR 97214. I would encourage you to stop by and check them out when you're in the area.
The other big news is we're just about ready to launch an expanded assortment of healthy snacks and sandwiches next week. Starting Wednesday, we'll have three different varieties of baguette sandwiches, featuring premium meats and cheeses from Boar's Head as well as a veggie option. We'll also have some snack boxes with hummus and fresh veggies.
I've wanted to offer something of this quality for a very long time so I'm very excited it's finally happening! Stop in Wednesday and look for the new refrigerator at the end of the counter and feel free to check our Facebook page for updates. Plan on stopping by to check them out. We'll be handing out samples. Heh, heh, heh!
Many people have been commenting on the jams we've been offering to accompany croissants, asking where they're available. Well, they're now available right here in the shop.
Fresh-made jams with locally sourced ingredients made by Mee Mee's Goodies. We're offering four varieties in 8 ounce jars for $7.00 each.
Here's an interesting article I found recently which seems to make no sense whatsoever until you read it. Check it out. It's short but very informative.
I think that's it for this week.
Many thanks 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