As we approach our grand opening celebration next week, things are coming together and it's getting very exciting. The name of the band is Dina y los rumberos who I heard about a year ago at an outdoor festival and felt from the get-go they would provide the festive music I wanted for our grand opening. I just watched a video of the band on YouTube and I think it's going to be a lot of fun. Check them out for yourself. I hope you can join us. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kl946Q6Y-yg
We will be doing a give-away the night of the party so be sure to be here and get your name in the pot. Prizes will include t-shirts, coffee, coffee delivery service and other assorted items.
When we remodeled the shop last year, as with any project of the sort, there were a few lingering things that hadn't been completed. Last week I finally completed the shelves for our selection of pour-over coffees which illustrates the concept of us being all about "options". :) So many coffees, so few days.
As many have experienced, when one goes to sign their name on the iPad finalizing their purchase, it's often a futile attempt at getting anything close to what one's signature really looks like. Recently, a customer took an entirely different approach which I thought you'd enjoy.
In last week's newsletter, I described a beautiful drive to enjoy the autumnal colors of Oregon. I had intended it for either motorcycle travel or car. It would be beautiful either way. However, I received a query about the possibility of organizing a group motorcycle ride of this route, starting with coffee at the shop. I had never considered this but thought it was a great idea so if there are others out there who would enjoy something like this, please let me know and we can try to schedule something.
Warmer temps have returned, at least for this weekend so we'll be prepared with plenty of cold-brewed coffee and teas to help keep you cool. The St. Johns Farmers Market will be taking place again tomorrow and there should be an abundance of fresh fruit and vegetables as well as some amazing salmon and sausages.
Many thanks for your continued support. I hope you'll come share in next week's grand opening/first-year anniversary celebration.
Mount & crew
Happy September everyone.
Cooler temperatures, rain, and an overall autumnal feel have descended upon us. It feels like this is going to be one of those seasons with no transition time at all, going straight from summer-type weather to autumn. All those add up to perfect coffee drinking weather.
For those of you in the Portland, Oregon area, I have a great route to share with you if you're interested in seeing some beautiful countryside. A friend and I took this route on our motorcycles the other evening and it was quite spectacular.
From Portland, take Hwy. 30 north to Scappoose. On the northern most end of Scappoose, turn left onto the Vernonia Hwy. Follow this for a number of miles (I can't remember exactly how far). You'll reach the intersection of Hwy. 47 which if you turn right, will take you to Mist. Turn right toward Mist.
Proceed through Mist and eventually you'll see signs which if you take the right will take you to Clatskanie or if you bear to the left, will take you to Astoria. Follow the road toward Astoria and go several more miles. You'll then reach another intersection (Hwy 103) which will take you to Elsie if you turn left.
Take that left toward Elsie and eventually, you'll reach Hwy. 26 for an easy return to Portland. The whole ride will probably take no more than a couple hours. I found the scenery to be absolutely beautiful and the light at this time of year is sensational.
This week, In addition to brewing inordinate quantities of coffee, we've been busy working on the final details of our upcoming grand opening/first-year anniversary celebration. I've discovered there's a reason I'm not an event planner.
We're hoping to pull off a very festive evening so please make plans to help us celebrate. Saturday, September 19th from 6-10 pm. There will be an assortment of food, beverages (adult and child), and live music. And all I will say is that there will be a minimal amount of coffee served. I'm hoping for great weather so we can spill out onto the sidewalks if necessary. Stay tuned for more details.
We'll be open all weekend as well as Monday (it is Labor Day after all.) So come see us, enjoy some hot or cold-brewed coffees and pastries and enjoy this amazing weather.
Many thanks as always and I hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable holiday weekend.
Mount & Crew
Well, well, well. Here we are talking about September already. Schools are starting, the rain is returning, and people are drinking more coffee. It seems like it was only a week ago when the opposite end of that cycle was happening.
The overcast skies and cooler temps create a very inviting atmosphere for enjoying our coffees and pastries outside.
And, when we first mentioned the idea of having our Grand Opening/First-year anniversary celebration in September, it seemed like we had months and months to plan it. Now, it's just a few weeks away. Things seem to be coming together nicely so I believe it will be a fun evening. Stay tuned for more specific information.
This week we would like to welcome two new customers. Our first delivery of coffee to the Airbnb corporate offices is happening today. As you may know, the Airbnb world has grown exponentially. Their office has grown from approximately 100 people at the beginning of this year to over 300 currently. We'll do our best to keep them fueled.
Village Patisserie is a new food cart, opening up in the Sellwood neighborhood, located at 1122 SE Tacoma St. in the new Piknik Park Food Pod.
Village Patisserie is dedicated to bringing you delicious food using fresh, local and seasonal ingredients. Their team is professionally trained to provide gourmet meals and desserts in the casual comfort of Piknik Park Food Pod.
They serve French inspired bakery sweets and savory cuisine. The cart is open for all four meals. breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert! Village Patisserie is locally owned and operated by husband and wife team, Michael and Tanya. Chef Tanya earned her culinary degree at Le Cordon Bleu in Boston, MA, where she trained in culinary and pastry kitchens and has worked the last seven years as a professional pastry chef in Boston and here in Portland.
Village Patisserie opens tomorrow, Saturday August 29th and will be serving St. Johns Coffee Roasters coffee along with their delectable offerings.
Check them out when you're in the area.
We received our coffee shipment this past Monday which included the new Ethiopian Yirgacheffe 1 FTO Adama Gorbota. I had the opportunity to roast it on Wednesday and am sipping a cup of it right now. It's absolutely delicious! Subtle notes of fruit, a touch of anise, yet not bright or acidic. Very very smooth and flavorful. This is a coffee that could be enjoyed all day long and would pair nicely with just about anything. We will be sampling this coffee throughout the weekend so come in and give it a try.
And now for some shameless sort of "self-promotion". Actually, for my daughter. If you're like me, I regularly wish I was in better shape and had better eating habits. It's not always easy to get started on a workout program without the help of someone.
If you share that sentiment, I would encourage you to check out my daughter's web site and see if it's something that might be of benefit. As a biased endorser, I found in working with her that she is able to tailor effective workout programs for a variety of people with varying skills, including myself.
Until next week, enjoy this cooler weather and come see us when you can. We have plenty of fresh-roasted organic and fair trade coffees available for taking home or enjoying here in the shop.
Mount & Crew
This past Monday we received our shipment of pottery from JMB Talavera in Delores Hidalgo, Mexico. And is usually the case, it exceeded our expectations. It's beautiful. New colors and patterns in demitasse and cappuccino cups as well as two sizes of serving platters. I long for the day when I can return to Delores Hidalgo and visit the potter in person.
With last week's Greenpeace protest now history, I expected this week to be a bit calmer. However, that wasn't the case. As a result, there were a few times when we just couldn't keep up with coffee brewing. Tomorrow I'll be ordering a larger capacity brewer to avoid situations like that in the future. Another one of those "growing pains".
Another recent growing pain has been trying to figure out the best mix of prepared foods from Molly's. We found we were running out of some things and had an abundance of others. Beginning this week, you can expect a larger selection of breakfast items as well as salads, wraps and a couple sandwiches.
I've mentioned the fact that the Guatemala Finca Bourbon has returned to our inventory of coffees. We did another cupping of it this past Monday morning and DANG! It is SOOO good! Obviously, we're not the only ones who feel that way. We've consistently been selling out of it from each batch that's roasted. I encourage you to come in the shop and let us do a pour-over of it for you.
It's hard to believe that just a week ago it was almost 100ºF! I'm grateful it has cooled off so pleasantly. It has made for great weather to enjoy sitting outside the shop, sipping on a coffee and eating a pastry or bagel. Not to mention better sleeping and better motorcycling weather!
My staff has been encouraging me to take a few days off so I'm in the process of trying to figure out how to make that happen and where exactly I'd go. I think I could squeeze about four days away from the shop.
I'm considering the northeast corner of Oregon, around the Joseph area, the southeast corner around the Steens Mountains, the Olympic Peninsula or northern California. If any of you have suggestions for good motorcycling routes to any of these areas or others, I'd welcome suggestions.
On that note, I'm going to begin looking at some maps.
Many thanks for your continued support. We appreciate your business very much. Don't forget to mark your calendars for Saturday, September 19th for our grand opening/first-year anniversary celebration.
As many of you know, this past week has been pretty exciting here in the St. Johns neighborhood of Portland.
Greenpeace activists held a protest against Shell Oil Company's repair of an ice breaker, headed to Alaska for assistance with off-shore oil drilling. The activists hung from the St. Johns Bridge in an attempt to block passage of the ship after having been repaired in dry dock.
The event brought many new people into the neighborhood, most of whom needed copious amounts of coffee. Our shop hosted journalists, activists, emergency personnel as well as sightseers. It was all pretty exciting.
Last Friday's reception for painter, Jeanne Levasseur was great. Many showed up to meet Jeanne and see her work first-hand. Jeanne brought in a selection of post cards of her various works which she left here and are available for only $3.50 each. A very affordable alternative to a full-size oil painting.
There's a new face at St. Johns Coffee Roasters who you will be seeing in the coming days. Her name is Katherine Johnson. She just began today and I believe will be a nice compliment to our existing staff and shop. However, she does present a bit of a problem in that we now have two "Katies". This morning I referred to them as "Katie #1 and Katie #2" but I know that can't last long.
We're doing all we can to help people stay cool and caffeinated with an assortment of cold-brewed coffees and iced teas. While I'm not crazy about the heat we're experiencing, the realization that tomorrow is August 1st is far more distressing, signaling the approach of Autumn. Don't get me wrong, Autumn is one of my favorite seasons but, it doesn't always lend itself to good motorcycling weather. Not that the world should revolve around me but...
Following is a link to an article from The New Yorker, shared with me by a friend.
While it deals specifically with wine, I believe a lot of the context transfers to the coffee industry as well. Sometimes when I read cupping notes or hear someone remark about their experience with various coffees, I think to myself, "Am I completely inept?" "Are my taste buds completely dead?" Or???
My point is that I believe many people are intimidated by the feeling they should be capable of detecting each nuance of a wine or coffee, and they should be looking for the most arcane characteristics. ie - mulled mint leaves infused with a hint of poblano pepper.
In my experience, each time I taste a particular coffee, or wine, I often notice something I had not detected previously. And it is all variable according to time and temperature. And, I think it can be much simpler than some would like to believe. I think it's fun to try and detect the various component flavors of a coffee or wine but the most critical factor is, "do you like it"?
A while back, I included a graphic of a wine tasting wheel. I'll include it again so you can do your own experiments and see what you think. Ok, I'm coming down off my soapbox.
We hope you'll stop by this weekend and select from over 20 varieties of organic and fair trade coffees or choose your favorite coffee beverage.
Meanwhile, many thanks for your continued support and we hope you have a fabulous weekend!
Mount & Crew
We've been hearing from a lot of customers lately how much they appreciate the fact that we offer decaf cold-brew coffee. Apparently, we're one of the few places in Portland that offer it. It seems like a no-brainer to me since it makes such a delicious afternoon beverage when one doesn't necessarily want the caffeine component.
We'll have plenty of it ready for the weekend when it appears the temperatures will be climbing once again. Like many, I have really been enjoying the cooler temps we've been having this week but hey, it's summer so I guess we shouldn't complain.
I received an e-mail from my supplier of Mexican pottery this week indicating my order has been completed and was being prepared to ship so look for a new assortment of espresso cups, cappuccino cups and platters in the near future. I would guess it will probably arrive around the first of August.
And keep your fingers crossed... the mugs with our logo which had to be remade are scheduled to arrive this coming week. If the quality is what is expected, they'll be available for purchase next weekend.
Don't forget to mark your calendars for next Friday evening's artist reception. Jeanne Levasseur's beautiful oil paintings have been on display at the shop for the past couple weeks but next Friday, you'll have the opportunity to meet Jeanne and talk with her about her inspirations and paintings. Snacks and beverages will be provided and kids are always welcome.
Some of you may also have noticed that our outdoor furniture is, transitioning. :) We discovered a problem with our original set of furniture and are replacing them with something which we believe will work better. However, we're working on the combination of sizes so we still have plenty of sidewalk clearance. So thank you in advance for your patience while we get this resolved.
And finally, we've received requests in the past for a multi-grain option for bagels. We've just begun bringing in some multi-grain, Everything bagels to meet this demand and, they are very very good. Give them a try next time you're in.
Meanwhile, I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend. Stop by for one of the largest selections of coffee available anywhere. Whether it's espresso, drip, pour-over, cold-brew coffee, hot or iced teas. Accompanied by great original boiled bagles, French pastries, salads, wraps or sandwiches. Can you tell I'm hungry? :)
Many thanks for your on-going support.
Mount & Crew
What a week it has been! Typical of the Pacific Northwest, the weather has been all over the place. We began the week with sun, transitioning into cool wet conditions, more like October and now, we're back to sun with summertime temperatures.
But it's made for some great coffee drinking weather. Of course, what isn't great coffee drinking weather? That said, we're ready for the weekend with lots of organic hot and cold-brewed coffees, teas and baked goods. We open at 7am tomorrow so one can get fueled before the opening of the St. John's Farmers Market at 9 am.
And, we're in the process of looking into some ways to expand on our current food offerings. It won't be worked out by tomorrow but hopefully, very soon.
We received two shipments of coffee this week so we'll have some of those available this weekend for your drinking pleasure. Available will be the Honduras Alto De Los Santos as well as the Colombian Red Ecolsierra. This is the first time I've purchased a coffee from Honduras and must admit, after reading some of the information (pre-delivery), I was a little concerned.
However, we sampled it yesterday and it is DELICIOUS! A very pleasant surprise. In some ways it reminds me of a Colombian coffee in that it has a nice "round" body, despite being a medium roast. But it also delivers a very syrupy mouthfeel with notes of dried raisin and a very clean finish.
Honduras Organic Alto de Los Santos coffee is sourced from a family-owned farm located near the town of Corquín within the department of Copan, Honduras. Joel López and Herminio Perdomo own and operate Alto de Los Santos. The farm is certified organic through HQC (Honduras Quality Coffees), which is a group of several independent coffee producers who do not belong to a cooperative. Alto de Los Santos is firmly committed to supporting the local community. Last year, Alto de Los Santos donated materials to the ministry of health and a small warehouse was built to store medical equipment and medication. Alto de Los Santos is currently partnering with members of neighboring communities near Corquín to distribute water filtration systems.
The Colombian coffee is the Fair Trade Organic Red Ecolsierra. This Colombian is pretty typical of specialty Colombian coffees providing a full body, bold chocolate with notes of orange zest, anise and nuts with a pleasing acidity.
Colombia FTO Red Ecolsierra is sourced from members of La Red de Productores Ecológicos de la Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta (RED ECOLSIERRA), which is an association established in 2001 by a group of small coffee producers living within the municipality of Santa Marta located in the department of Magdalena, Colombia. In addition to coffee, RED ECOLSIERRA cultivates cacao and honey. RED ECOLSIERRA also provides technical support for organic certification.
Next week we expect to receive our new logo diner mugs. Barring any unforeseen hurdles, we should have them in-stock for next weekend. And on the subject of coffee merchandise, the price of our Baratza burr grinders has gone (I hope you're sitting down), down. Yes, that correct. We've lowered them.
If you've considered upgrading from your ole slash-and-burn blade grinder, now is the perfect time. Here's a great article on selecting the right grinder for your use. We have several of the Encore and Virtuoso models in stock.
We always try to "go-the-extra-mile" when it comes to customer service because, that's just the way it should be done. This past week, a customer felt compelled to post his experience on Yelp. It's gratifying to know our efforts are appreciated.
"So I tend to run super late when it comes to catching the 16 bus right in front of St. John's Coffee roasters. I also am not a big coffee drinker, so I don't account for needing time to stop and get coffee. Anyways, I was headed to the bus stop, I live near the grocery outlet, and catch the Bus in front of SJCR. As I was a block away from my stop I realized I might have enough time to get some coffee but wasn't sure if they would have a line in SJCR, when I got there I saw they didn't. I quickly ordered my iced americano, waited outside so I could see if my bus would be coming, then when I saw that it was, I told the cute red headed cashier I wasn't gonna be able to grab my coffee and would possibly grab it the next morning if that was okay. They said yes and started saying something else but I walked out for fear that I might miss the bus. As I was waiting for the bus I see someone out of the corner of my eye as I was being a loser with my phone glued to my hand roaming the inter webs. It was the lovely red headed girl cashier walking up with my coffee! It was such a pleasant surprise and completely unexpected. They weren't above and beyond what they needed to. I feel bad only tipping 1$ now lol but my coffee was only 2.75 I believe. Regardless I was completely caught off guard and appreciate so much that they were willing to do that for me. Now I will be able to start my day with some energy. Being a restaurant manager of a busy restaurant and also being a cook of another busy restaurant I rarely see any sleep. Especially now that I have been taking the bus. So thank you cute red headed cashier girl :) you are the best. Keep up the good work! If you're the owners of SJCR or manager, make sure to keep this young lady around, meh I'm young myself but anyways. She's a valuable employee who did more then she had to in the name of customer service. THATS rare. Lol
For those of you who enjoy jazz piano, don't forget that Jon Mayer will be performing this Thursday evening at Classic Pianos at SE Powell Blvd and Milwaukie Ave. (next to the Aladdin Theater), beginning at 7:30 pm.
Tickets are only $15 and may be purchased by calling Peggie at Classic Pianos, 503.546.5622 or via e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org. The performance begins at 7:30 pm and usually runs a couple hours.
Not only is Jon an amazing pianist but he establishes a great rapport with his audiences and is a very humble figure despite the fact he's played with jazz greats Kenny Dorham, Tony Scott, Pete LaRoca, John Coltrane, Chet Baker, Kenny Clarke, Thad Jones, Dionne Warwick, Sarah Vaughan, The Manhattan Transfer, Ron Carter, Billy Higgins... You get the idea.
And the venue that Classic Pianos provides is the best! A small, intimate room that only accommodates 100 people. Last time I heard Jon perform there, they had set him up with a 9 foot Schimmel grand piano which was an amazing instrument.
Starting in July, look for our special offer in the new on-line version of Chinook Book!
In the meantime, indulge yourself with a home delivery of fresh roasted coffee. Each Wednesday, we deliver fresh roasted organic and fair trade coffees to customers' homes and businesses within the 97203, 97211 and 97217 zip codes, for no additional charge.
All one needs to do is submit the order by Monday morning before 9 am, and we'll have it on your doorstep, bright and early Wednesday morning. What a way to start one's day!
What are you waiting for? Indulge yourself. You deserve it.
Have a fabulous week and keep the coffee flowing!
Mount & crew