Posts Tagged ‘coffee roasters’

Seven Districts

December 8, 2019

I happened upon Seven Districts, a stall in the grounds of Lincoln Castle on the first day of the Lincoln Christmas Market. A rare example of a quality stall on a very tacky Christmas market. I stopped by and had a chat.

Seven Districts, a coffee roastery based in Lincolnshire, one of the few local traders on the Lincoln Christmas Market.

The coffee is in eye catching bags, but, and it is a very big but.

A classic example of capture by a marketing company and falling hook, line and sinker for their bullshit.

We’re proud to be from Lincolnshire, where we sipped our first coffee, burnt our first bean and celebrated our first roast, perfecting our craft as we grew; naturally we wanted our own coffee to be inspired by our home.

Many-a-great tale have been shared over a cup of the ‘dark brew’ and doubtless many more will still be told; to carry the heart of our homeland to the world, we want you to enjoy yourself a cup inspired by the folk-lores woven throughout these Seven Districts of Lincolnshire.

Lincolnshire has seven districts, filled with ancient history, beautiful heritage and age-old folklores. We wanted to take some of these to the world and share their passion through the stories woven throughout our seven districts.

We’ve named each of our single origins after a folklore of the seven districts. We’ve then taken the uniqueness of each district and matched it with the profiles of the coffee roasts we produce.

For example Tiddy Mun is a fairy king  who used to inhabit the marshland around Boston until Charles I engaged Dutch civil engineers to drain the marshes. Which begs the question what has this to do with high altitude coffee grown in Rwanda? The simple answer is absolutely nothing. On the other hand could be one of the many tales associated with coffee in Ethiopia.

Gullible American tourists in a touristy shop on Steep Hill may fall for this bullshit but it is not doing the coffee any favours. Good coffee speaks for itself.

Ethically sourced meaningless. Fair Trade long past sell by date, marketing ploy to make Middle Class feel good. Fair Trade pays a tiny premium above commodity price, coffee is coffee, maintains farmers in poverty as no incentive to improve. Direct trade, coffee roasteries form long term partnerships with growers, help to improve quality quality, willing to pay a premium for quality. With Direct Trade everyone benefits, the farmers, the roastery, the coffee shop, the coffee drinker.

The bags Roman numerals, I to VII, seven districts of Lincolnshire. Each bag also has a name, and a little bit of local history. At least I thought each bag had a different Roman numeral, logical, but no, all VII, only the name is different.

Yes, well designed packaging, but if to be taken seriously the coffee has to have details of the coffee, not local history no matter how interesting that may be.

Coffee is seasonal. It does not help, different single origin packaged under the same name.

Every coffee bean has a story to tell, if telling a story, tell the story of the farm the coffee beans come from. This means a lot to the farmer.

Within the coffee industry have often discussed how much information to put on a bag, too much and turns people off, too little and not sufficient.

But as a bare  minimum, where sourced from. altitude, processing of beans, tasting notes and roast date. Maybe a little summary of where sourced from. More information may be provided via a qr code.

I can think of several coffee shops that regularly have in stock and serve guest coffee. Would they stock this coffee? No. The reason why, there is not the information on the bags their discerning customers expect to find.

A coffee shop where Seven Districts tried to peddle their wares was singularly unimpressed by their lack of knowledge of coffee.

Excellent advice in Businesses for Punks, do not waste money on marketing, do not engage marketing consultants, invest the money in your product.

Seven Districts have ably demonstrated why that advice is so valuable. They have poured money down the drain.

An artistically designed booklet. Try reading in anything other than strong daylight.

Marketing bullshit to one side, what of the beans, the roasting?

A Q grade in excess of 85. The roaster no previous experience in coffee roasting.

On the stall it was possible in not ideal conditions to try a not very well poured V60. It was ok, not great, nothing to get excited about. I do not know which of the seven coffees on display I was served.

I took away two bags of coffee, an Ethiopian and a Rwandan.

I await an expert brewing.

As I write a beautiful aroma from the Ethiopian, nothing from the Rwandan.

The Ethiopian Coffee Company Coffee Roasters

November 22, 2015
coffee beans

coffee beans

cappuccino

cappucino

Coffee from The Ethiopian Coffee Company coffee stall.

I asked was their beans ground fresh for each cup? Yes, you asked last time. My reason for asking was because I knew the other coffee stall at the South Bank street food market did not, too much trouble, but I could not remember whether true of both. Impressed I asked.

Excellent cappuccino, one of the best but at £2-90 for a tiny cup, expensive.

The beans freshly roasted, then delivered to to the stall, seven to ten days after roasting.

My last visit, beans had an earthy smell, which put me off. This visit a slight aroma, but not very noticeable, not if  compare with Union hand roasted or beans from Pelicano for example. Why I do not know. Maybe because out in the open, not in an enclosed container. I will have to consult my coffee experts.

Allpress Espresso

September 11, 2014
Jimmy Bean cappuccino made with Allpress coffee beans

Jimmy Bean cappuccino made with Allpress coffee beans

At Allpress it’s always about flavour … starting at coffee farms and finishing in your cup. Our obsession with the best tasting coffee involves selecting top grade Arabica beans, using innovative roasting technology, training baristas and the expertise of our people. — Michael Allpress

Allpress Espresso are a coffee roaster located in Shoreditch in London.

I came across their beans on Jimmy Bean, a coffee stall on the food market in Winchester.

I asked when were the beans roasted. I was told Monday. And that was good enough for me.

Usually no one knows and I would suggest as Allpress Espresso are selling quality beans, they follow the example set by Winchester coffee roasters and mark on their packs when roasted, as that is important.

I need quality beans for freddo cappuccino or freddo espresso, knowing when roasted important.

Jimmy Bean offered, as I was buying a pack of beans, to try the coffee.

To compare with what I have elsewhere, I asked for a cappuccino. The purists would probably frown, and say I should have had an espresso, but then I would not be comparing like with like.

The cappuccino was excellent. Better than Harris + Hoole Guildford (which I use as a benchmark as excellent coffee) and possibly on a par with Stokes on High Bridge in Lincoln.

Allpress source top-quality Arabica beans from small farms, estates and co-ops, that are sustainably managed with high standards of agricultural practice and specialise in high grade beans.

Usually such beans are single sourced, from named farms or growers. In that Allpress are unusual. The beans I bought, Redchurch Blend, were a blend from several different countries.

Note: The amazing reggae track is Dust And Dirt, title track from Dust And Dirt by The Black Seeds, a New Zealand reggae band.


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