Saturday, September 22, 2012

The new era in blogging!

Just found this app so I can blog straight from phone. This will mean I have no excuse. I hope to do more in conjunction with my new project I'm doing with Natural Isreal called This Coffee Life. Right now our main presence is on face book but that will expand in the near future.

Friday, June 24, 2011

A Coffee Festival for the People

So last weekend in Seattle was the first NW Coffee Festival and by all accounts it was a resounding success. I had the pleasure of going to many of the planning meetings leading up to the event and got to witness the dedication and passion that the organizers put into the event. The amount of work to get a event like this of the ground is practically super human & watching the mostly volunteer group dedicate their time to making this event the success it was is both inspiring and humbling. It strikes me as funny that it took this group of pioneers to put on one of the few consumer oriented coffee event in the country and only one in Seattle given how much coffee industry insiders have often lamented the lack of knowledge among consumers and lack of eduction being done by the industry. The coffee industry events have often seemed to me like big navel events where we tell each other how great coffee is and how great we are for realizing this and then complaining that the great unwashed masses should know this too.
Well now there is at least one event for those that want to delve into that mysterious beverage known as coffee and it took a group of non coffee professionals to get the Seattle area coffee industry together to put on a united front and share our love of coffee with the world.

It was a pleasure for me to participate in this event with Caffe Ladro and I was very proud of my company for jumping in and being involved. Next year will be bigger and better.

I was somewhat surprised by the amount of coffee people could drink on Saturday our booth that consisted of a two group La Marzocco Linea a pour over Melitta bar and aeropress had a line from 5 people to at times 20 people deep from 10am to 5pm. We had three Mazzer espresso grinders with our Ladro espresso blend in one and a blend with 5 parts Guatemala to 1 part Brazil natural in another and a lovely Rwanda coffee that tasted lovely no matter how it was prepared. You were able to get these three coffee brewed as espresso, pour over or through the aeropress. For the pour over and aeropress we used a Mahlkonig Guatemala lab grinder. People had many of questions and were very curious.

Well that's all for now.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

So I am opening a coffee house in Fremont which is a neighborhood in Seattle.,_Seattle,_Washington
It is a small space with lot's character and potential. There is not enough room to do everything I would like but, it is a start. For those of you that know me know that this has been my dream for the past 8 years since I started working in coffee in 99. Since I started working in coffee I have done little else. I eat, drink, sleep coffee often to the neglect of my family. Since day one my single minded goal was to own a coffee house.
My ideal coffee house would have several espresso machines and numerous ways to brew coffee but, that will have to wait for now. I will have one espresso machine, the Clover brewing system (, a two group gold cone bar setup (
and Cafe Press (aka French Press)
I would also like to offer competition style signature drinks and do regular coffee cuppings. Here are some pictures of the space and surrounding area.

Real Men

This is kind of old but, it is still funny.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Something New

Well Craig you wanted something New. I am opening my own coffee house but, I think you knew that.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

It's all about the espresso

I do allot of training both for my company Borogove Coffee and contract work for other roasters and coffee houses. Recently I was doing a training at coffee house for a roaster that was unhappy with the way this coffee house was presenting their coffee. At some point during the training we were talking about why it is important to make the espresso the best that it could be and I reiterated something about making good espresso and macchiato's and short drinks. I was somewhat startled by their response. I don't know why because I have heard this response before especially from busy coffee house's like theirs. She said well we don't make that many straight espresso's and macchiato's. I don't remember how I replied at the time but, the more I thought about her answer the more it bugged me. From my perspective it all starts with a great shot of espresso. If you can't do that you are vulnerable to Starbucks or another company coming in who can make good espresso. I'm not saying that Starbucks makes good espresso but, if they moved in to your neighborhood and you aren't taking care of your coffee you are vulnerable.
Here is a example. When I first started working at Zoka in 1999 they had great coffee but, no training program. A new person would be hired and they would get to make drinks for customers on their first day. The quality of drinks from barista to barista (I use the term barista her very loosely) varied greatly. Their where a couple of really good barista's and allot of mediocre barista's. It was not uncommon for customers to come in and ask for specific barista's to make their drink. At the same time there was a extremely busy bakery a short block away and they where always busy but, they had crappy coffee. I was hired at Zoka to be the manager and my first course of action was to start at least a basic training program. Within a year later the situation was reversed the Zoka started to get busier and busier while this bakery that had been their for fifteen plus years was starting to loose business. Customers started to comment that they used to have their favorite barista's but, now they are all good. The number of straight espresso's and macchiato's and other short drinks grew. I saw the same thing happen when I later moved to Hotwire. The change I made was very easy and simple I made the staff take care the their espresso shot's.
I think if the bakery that was near Zoka had better coffee and took some care with it I don't think Zoka would have had such an easy time stealing their customers. The thing that baffles me is that it is not that hard to make good espresso. It just takes a little knowledge and training and with the internet their is no excuse.
So, pull that espresso with love and take care of it and it will take care of you.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Work that coffee baby! Work it!

Seattle Coffee Works

There is a new coffee house in downtown Seattle on Pike St. near the Pike Place Market. Their Grand re-opening was this last Monday. I went down their with my cheapo camera and hung out and took a few pictures. Their thing is that they have ten different roasters Seattle area who's espresso blends they are using. They have twelve different grinders. The name of the place is Seattle Coffee Works. When you go in you can order what they call The Works it is three espresso's from three different Seattle area roasters. They also have the Coffee Drinking Man out front.
Coffee Drinking Man
The Coffee Drinking Man will eventually have a battery powered motor attached so that it will move automatically but, for now he needs to be hand cranked. The guy next to The Coffee Drinking Man is Sebastian the owner of SCW he is a crazy German with a mad scientist look in is eyes who you can't help but like.
The next time you are visiting the market stop by Seattle Coffee Works and ask for a shot of Espresso Gitano or Espresso Cremona. They are using Borogove coffee among other coffees.
Sebastian I hope you do well and you have all my support.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Borogove Coffee

Many people have been asking me lately what is this Borogove and what is up with Hotwire. Well Borogove Coffee is my roasting company that I am in parternship with Tim McCormack. It is still pretty much a start up and we are now looking for potential wholesale accounts. I am still a part of Hotwire I am mostly doing the training for the two stores. Yes, our Shoreline location was sold. It is at the moment still a Hotwire and they are using Borogove coffee and I am doing all their coffee training. My main focus right now is on growing Borogove. The name borogove comes from the Lewis Carol nonsense poem Jabberwocky:
"Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

Our web site is The web site is still rough but, feel free to check it out.