Posts Tagged ‘coffee shop’

Jericho Coffee Traders

September 23, 2019

When a coffee shop slags off another coffee shop, we know there is something wrong.

On a visit to Oxford I was heading to Colombia Coffee Roasters in the Oxford Covered Market only to my annoyance I found closed.

I have passed by Jericho Coffee Traders in the past, but never found open. With Colombia Coffee Roasters not open, it afforded the opportunity to try.

I have had mixed reports on Jericho Coffee Traders, none of which were favourable. Time to see for myself.

An interesting building on the outside, quite small on the inside, roast their own coffee.

My cappuccino was ok, not great, nothing to go out of my way for, not on a par with the best coffee shops in Oxford.

I was somewhat surprised to be told Colombia Coffee Roasters do not know how to roast coffee. This I queried as I know not to be true. Not my experience nor that of anyone I know who knows good coffee. They roast excellent coffee.

My only criticism of Colombia Coffee Roasters is their failure to note roast date on their bags of coffee.

I queried, asked to explain the reasoning.

I was then fed bullshit. It was my opinion, it was their opinion. Lacked any understanding coffee.

Then followed by a diatribe of how bad Colombia Coffee Roasters treat their staff. Not my experience, indeed it has been quite the opposite.

Coffee #1

August 14, 2019

Alresford has two coffee shops, Carocoli and Coffee #1.

Carocoli never knew what they were, a coffee shop, a deli, the coffee was not good and they went bust. Now under new owners.

Coffee #1 new, only open a few weeks in Alresford.

I decided to alight from the bus passing through to Winchester, a quick look around, try a coffee at Coffee #1, then carry on down to Winchester.

It is easy to tell when a coffee shop not good, a row of syrups and asked what size cup for a cappuccino.

A row of syrups on the back wall, I was asked what size cappuccino.

If asked what size, I always ask to see the cups. Regular and large.

There is only one size, the correct size, no other size will suffice.

Feeling hungry having not eaten since late breakfast I also asked for a bap with bacon.

A long wait to be served, though there was an apology, an even longer wait to be brought my bacon bap, longer still before my cappuccino arrived.

The bap was brought with no serviette. I had to go in search of. It was ok, not great.

The cappuccino when it finally arrived appeared to have been carpet bombed with chocolate. I sent it back. The next to arrive looked disgusting, tasted disgusting scalding hot, deep layer of froth and foam, of which I scooped out a large glop with my teaspoon.

Bags of coffee on display. I picked up an espresso blend and a Costa Rican.

Nothing to say where the espresso blend sourced, the Costa Rican commodity coffee, no mention of farm.

No roast date, only a meaningless best be date. Actually worse then useless. Old stale coffee, no aroma.

Ambience pleasant.

Service took so long I missed the next bus and had to wait a further half an hour.

Young girl making the coffee treated very badly by young man who seemed to be in charge. Shouted at her in a very unpleasant manner Come Here. Further shouting at her. Then the shouting became worse, she walked away, clearly distressed and upset, walked into a room marked Private, and did not emerge until some time later as I was leaving.

Had I not been about to leave I would have spoken to her as a very bad example of bullying in the workplace. A report was filed to Coffee #1. They lacked the courtesy to respond, which shows the importance they attach to workplace bullying.

Note: Workplace bullying is a breach of employment legislation.

Coffee +#1 is a a large chain of around 100 coffee shops owned by Caffe Nero and it shows.

Harris + Hoole is also owned by Caffe Nero, and since bought by Caffe Nero has experienced death by a thousand cuts, but they at least attempt to make decent coffee. Coffee #1 do not even go through the motions.

The only good thing I could find to say, bags of coffee grounds to take away for the garden, though from the number of bags piled on the floor the take up appeared to be low.

It was then pick up the bus, head into Winchester, to have a decent coffee at The Square.

101 Coffee Espresso Bar

July 10, 2019

101 Coffee Espresso Bar could not be easier to find.

On a summer’s day, a pleasant walk along the Oxford Canal, after the first lock, cross the canal over a footbridge to Jericho, a zigzag, out of Juxon Street, opposite the other side of the street, 101 Coffee Espresso Bar.

Only no sign, nothing to indicate 101 Coffee Espresso Bar. Only on walking in, thinking this looks interesting, did I see on the counter 101 Coffee.

I was the only one there, or at least I was, a steady stream of customers.

Pleasant ambience, natural wood tables with an impressive polish. Excellent varnish. No, it is resin.

Coffee I have not come across before, Quarter Horse Coffee. Apparently they were in Oxford, a coffee shop and roastery, then upped sticks to Birmingham, closed their Oxford coffee shop.

101 Coffee Espresso Bar an unusual set up, a tiny coffee shop, up narrow stairs on the first floor a tiny barber shop. The only indication of this, as walk into 101 Coffee Espresso Bar a barber’s chair. I commented on this, asking had I walked into barber shop or a coffee shop?

Excellent cappuccino.

Copies of Standart, to read not for sale.

Something I had never seen before, water in a can not a plastic bottle. From what I could make out the can was in itself unusual in that it was resealable.

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.

The Handle Bar

June 19, 2019

Passing by The Handle Bar I popped in.

A bicycle shop cum coffee shop, in the evening turns into a bar and restaurant.

Upstairs quirky. Coffee reasonable, service poor. The loud moronic music blasting out not pleasant.

Girl serving could not hear what I was saying. When forced to shout, she looked aghast.

People shouting to make themselves heard. Which then adds to the overall noise level.

Obviously not heard of the trend to quieter restaurants.

Poor selection of magazines.

It was only on leaving I learnt the coffee bar was downstairs. I had passed it on walking in, but mistook it for a bar. In the evening it turns into a bar and stops serving coffee. Quieter than upstairs.

Coffee roasted by The Missing Bean.

Cappuccino Café Amárena

June 3, 2019

Late night cappuccino at Café Amárena.

OK but not great.

Problem is neither barista nor espresso machine, the problem is poor quality coffee used. Ideally also need better grinders, Mythos One for espresso, EK 43 for pour over and cold brew.

No excuse when these days spoilt for choose, many excellent coffee roasteries to choose from, both for beans for espresso and single origin for filter coffee, though not in Cyprus. (see below)

Having said that, far better than anything will get in Protaras.

Earlier in the evening, had passed by Starbucks, as always when pass by, empty. Sunday as an act of desperation, Starbucks illegally hawking their drinks Fig Tree Bay.

Whilst at Café Amárena a cold drip tower on the counter slowly brewing, one dip a second.

As a foot note a few suggestions from where to source coffee.

  • England
    • Hasbean
    • Square Mile
    • Horsham Coffee Roasters
    • Dark Woods
    • Caravan
    • Origin
    • Alchemy
    • Girls Who Grind
    • Cartwheel Coffee
    • Pharmacie
  • Athens
    • Taf
    • The Underdog
    • Taresso
    • Mind the Cup
  • Berlin
    • The Barn
    • Five Elephant
    • Bonanza

Cappuccino Paul’s Coffee Roasters

May 27, 2019

Paul’s Coffee Roasters a micro-roastery and coffee shop in the back streets of Larnaca.

Very pleasant ambience, not only the coffee shop abut also the courtyard out the back.

As walk in, coffee roaster displayed on the left on show in the window, counter to the right in front.

The only coffee shop apart from Outpost Coffee where I have found Gina, the only coffee shop where I have found in use. Interestingly, not only used as pour over cf V60 or Chemex, also used for making tea.

Excellent selection of reading material, Standart and Another Escape. This is becoming a standard feature of quality coffee shops, quality reading to match the coffee.

I suggested add Drift, Ambrosia, possibly Om Nom.  In Refinery and SoHo House Berlin I came across several interesting magazines that I had not seen before, BRYGG, The Beam and KinFolk.

My cappuccino excellent.

I would have liked a pour over but no time. As good a reason as any to return.

Located near St Lazarus Church backstreets behind the seafront.

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.

Cappuccino and pour over guest coffee at Café Amárena

May 21, 2019

Café Amárena located in the centre of Protaras, one of only two coffee shops in Protaras serving specialty coffee, the other Miyu Coffee overlooking Fig Tree Bay.

Very rare examples of quality coffee in Cyprus.

https://twitter.com/keithpp/status/113095268152112332

First a cappuccino using Café Amárena house blend.

We then tried a Colombian guest coffee from Cartwheel Coffee using three different pour over methods, Clever Dripper, Chemex and V60.

I have never liked Clever Dripper, it always appears as a cheap nasty copy of V60. But I have to admit, proof of the pudding, does it brew a good coffee? The answer, no. That brewed with the Clever Dripper did not do justice to the Colombian coffee.

It was then the Chemex v V60.

Initially I preferred the V60, but as the coffee cooled, my preference switched to the Chemex.

Many thanks to head barista Antonis Voukkalis.

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.