Posts Tagged ‘coffee roastery’

Mokka retail shop

December 4, 2019

Usually I am lucky to find Mokka coffee shop open.

As I am earlier than usual and find their retail shop is open, I first look in Mokka shop, it closes at 1530 and this is the only visit I find open.

Massive industrial grinders for their coffee fed from a large roasting machine above, also single origin on a smaller roaster though still large compared to most roasteries in England.

When I asked abut the single origin coffee, I found the staff to be very knowledgeable and helpful.

I chose a Costa Rican single origin coffee.

Then to Mokka coffee shop.

Mokka fourth generation founded in the mid-1920s.

Dope Roasting Co

November 23, 2019

On leaving The Underdog, I find Dope Roasting Co, my second attempt.

But why oh why does Google Maps send me along polluted busy roads, not walk alongside Metro line from Thisio to Monastiraki?

An interesting building, not a building, a space between two buildings, hence the bare graffiti covered walls.

Interesting conversation between head roaster and owner as to why they use Robusta.

Conventional wisdom, remove the sugar, try, then ask if still require sugar.

Turn this on its head, go with the flow, Greeks have bad taste in coffee, loads of sugar. Therefore offer high quality Robusta from India, beans double the price of cheap commodity Robusta, which the corporate chains use and small chains like 200 Degrees to bulk out their coffee.

Did I try the Robusta? No. I did though check the freshly roasted beans.

I tried a cappuccino, Arabica not Robusta.

The bags of coffee poorly labeleld, need more information on the origin, taste profile, roast date.

Dope Roasting Co is new, a coffee shop and roastery.

Coffee Gems

July 11, 2019

I had learnt of Coffee Gems from two different sources. Time to pay a visit.

Head roaster Ricardo. Background in coffee, had grown up on the family coffee farm in Colombia, had worked across Latin America as an agricultural adviser to farms helping to improve their coffee to enable them to secure a better price, direct trade not the FairTrade scam that maintains farmers in poverty. Now he was at the other end, roasting high quality coffee beans, nothing less than Q grade 94.

Whilst we were chatting he made me a cappuccino. Excellent.

I would have stayed and had a V60, but time was not on our side and he still had an order to process and deliver.

He gave me a bag of coffee he had literally just roasted, I could smell the roasting as I arrived, and invited me to return.

Highly tempting when I learnt he has Cup of Excellence from Colombia and Panama.

I made a number of suggestions:

  • Follow the example of Pharmacie in Brighton, open on a Saturday as a pop up coffee shop.
  • Hold coffee cupping.
  • In the summer have a stall on the Guildford farmers market.

I also suggested a number of outlets for his coffee.

Note: I revisited the following week. I left with a bag of freshly roasted Colombian coffee. This I tried a few days later at Blackbird in Brighton. We agreed it was excellent.

Colombia Coffee Roasters

June 20, 2019

Ideal place for a coffee shop thought I as I wandered through Oxford Covered Market, and no soonest had this thought occurred as if by magic one was conjured up.

A board said artisan coffee. They all claim artisan, gourmet is another, means nothing.

A fool was giving the barista a hard time, whilst at the same time blocking customers.

I ordered a cappuccino. It was excellent. Long chat with a Colombian lady, the owner, whose family own a farm in Columbia from where sources her beans from adn from other farms she knows.

Knowledgeable and professional staff.

What I liked which I have not come acrioss before, an intern from Latin America, learns the coffee shop side of the coffee trade, improves her English.

Jasmine Micro Roastery

May 23, 2019

Coffee shop and coffee roastery.

I arrived after they had closed.

The barista and coffee roaster had already left as also runs a restaurant.

I had a chat with the owner. He offered V60, hot or cold. I chose cold.

Half the water, drips through to a carafe with ice the other half of the water to be instantly chilled.

This I had with one of their little cakes. These are made by the restaurant using ingredients from associated shop, thus closing the loop of a circular economy. One of the cakes dark chocolate based was using chaff from the coffee roasting.

I suggested could also use spent coffee grounds.

I was initially offered cold brew. This was concentrated watered down.

Not the way to make cold brew unless using the cold brew concentrate as a base for something else, for example a cocktail.

I had a little look around the associated shop. Trying hard to be ethical.

I advised the shampoo they are selling Faith in Nature can be bought in bulk, five litre containers and customers refill. As happens at Dash Vegan Zero Waste Shop.

They had ecoffee cup, also the very expensive reusable cups kleen canteen I have only ever seen in 200 Degrees Nottingham Station.

Green and Black’s is Cadbury’s, now owned by Kraft, it is not quality chocolate, adds palm oil.

Whole Earth I would not touch with a barge pole.

Located 20-30 minutes walk from Larnaca Marina, inland from Larnaca Harbour. A not very pleasant location.

Bonanza Coffee Heroes

May 12, 2019

I have heard good things, was recommended, but arrived on the dot of six, and they close on the dot of six.

Why close so early? People sat outside other places enjoying a lovely sunny day, why close at six?

A guy apologised.

But a woman claimed no one wished for coffee after six. Er, why were they busy, why were they turning people away?

She claimed they wanted a life. Do not work in coffee.

Had I not visited No Fire No Glory or on the way visited a street food market and eaten, which I would not have found had I not, then yes, not only would I have arrived in time for a coffee, I may also have had time to return to The Barn Roastery. But then had I done these things, I would not have visited the park at the end of the street.

Pharmacie

July 29, 2018

I first came across Pharmacie, a small coffee roastery in Hove, when I came across their coffee as guest coffee in Flat Whites Coffee Shop in Winchester.

I decided to pay them a visit. Hence the reason for finding myself in Brighton on a Saturday when I would usually visit on a Sunday.

What I did not expect was the long trek to Hove.

I was looking forward to a pleasant walk along the seafront, but instead found myself battling a gale force wind.

First though, after an excellent lunch at Iydea in North Laine, a cappuccino from Brass Monkey, an ice cream parlour. I had learnt from my last visit to Brighton early June they would be serving coffee from Pharmacie.

The cappuccino was not good, neither was the ice cream, honey and lavender.  Not a good sign.  On the other hand the person who served the coffee, not a clue on coffee, served too hot. It makes the point, if care about the reputation of your coffee, take care to where you supply.

It had been windy. I assumed would be sheltered walking along the seafront.  Quite the opposite. A gale blowing from the south-west.

The seafront at Hove is ugly. A wide monotonous expanse of tarmac that goes on for ever. The monotony only broken by a Victorian Bandstand, a sculpture entitled Constellation and painted sheds, otherwise known as beach huts. People pay a small fortune for one of these sheds, to sit in and stare at the sea.

Past the sheds, I head inland.

It is far far further than I thought to walk to Pharmacie. I arrive at a quarter to four, fifteen minutes before they close.

Pharmacie is located in an old cobbled mews. One side used to be stables, the other side housed the carriages.

Pharmacie is housed in one of the old stables, a coffee shop and roastery.

I am the only customer.  Apparently they are busy in the morning.

I order a cappuccino. It is excellent.

I only wish time fora V60, a cold brew.

A guy brings in a Swiss roll he has made. He offers me a slice. I am reluctant to accept as no fan of Swiss roll. I find it is excellent. Very tasty, my only regret I declined a larger slice.

He later offers me chocolate coated coffee beans, which he has also made.

I buy beans, roasted that morning, single origin from Colombia and Ethiopia. I am given a tote bag to carry away my four bags of beans.

I query the packaging. Can be recycled, the average coffee bag cannot as a composite structure.

The bags have details of the beans, how processed, the farm they came from.

When meet coffee roasters who can tell you nothing of their beans, offer light, medium or dark roast for the same beans, have beans so over-roasted they are black and oily, have roasted beans in open hessian sacks on a stall at 30C or at the same temperature in bags in the midday day sun, or can tell you nothing of the provenance of the beans, where they were roasted, who lack any respect for the beans they are selling, then look elsewhere.

Sadly I have met several charlatans this month alone who are a disgrace to the coffee industry.

Sitting in the corner a large coffee roaster,  Geisen. Maybe the same model I saw at Edgcumbes Coffee the previous week.

I pick up latest Caffeine and what I have not seen before, The Independent Brighton & Hove Coffee Guide, an independent guide to coffee shops in Brighton and Hove. It is stressed it is genuinely independent, the coffee shops have not paid to be listed. Contrast with The North and North Wales Independent Coffee Guide which is a blatant scam, coffee shops pay £500 for a listing and write their own entry.

I would have liked to have tried a V60, maybe a cold brew, but arrived too late and they were wishing to close.

I head back down to the seafront for the long trek back to Brighton.

Interesting villas line the street, as did the road I walked up. A few appear to be single residence, many have been converted to flats, a few are hotels.

I pass Small Batch, look in, but no time to stop for a coffee.

As I approach the road that runs along the seafront I am nearly blown off my feet. It is now worse than before.

Pharmacie is four people with long experience in coffee, including a Master Coffee Roaster. Contrast with the many coffee roasteries established by people with no experience of coffee let alone coffee roasting.

Pharmacie is only open on a Saturday. On the first Saturday of the month they add a food truck.

Their tweets often make little sense, and posting pictures to twitter via Instagram is pointless as the pictures not visible on twitter.

Yes, it is possible to walk from Brighton along the seafront, and in the absence of a gale, would be a pleasant walk, otherwise Hove Station is close by.