Featured Roast/Torréfaction de la semaine: Not quite all African!

This board has been a little quiet recently. The roaster has still been busy and the coffees have been here, but my activity with the blog has been on the slow side……molasses at this time of year and all.

That being said, we still have some of the Galapagos coffee from the El Cafetal plantation on San Cristobal island. In addition we continue to offer the Murago from the region of Muyinga in Burundi. Then something that hasn’t been on the feature list for awhile is the Wild Forest Harvest coffee from the Kaffa region in Ethiopia.

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Featured Roast/Torréfaction de la semaine: My mistake…. A Sort Of Mistake!

I stand corrected! I must admit to mislabelling the one coffee for the feature. It is actually not a returning favourite but a brand new star!

Like the Gakana this one is sourced from Kalico of the Kahawa Link Co. of Burundi, but  is from Murago in the region of Muyinga in the northern part of the country.

Cupping notes supplied by my supplier from Burundi , was 87+ with the following details:

  • A well balanced coffee
  • Orange
  • Clean
  • Very good acidity
  • Makes a good espresso

Additional information:

  •  Altitude: 1720m
  • Crop: 2014-2015
  • Quality: FW 15+
  • Variety: Bourbon
  • Screen: +15

My own experience concurs with the quality and flavour of the coffee. I might add that it has a rich taste with good body. And yes the espresso I am sipping at the moment is very nice!

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Featured Roast/Torréfaction de la semaine: Something Old, Something new….Sort Of!

To help make the transition from 2014 to 2015 we are starting the New Year off with some old friends, a couple of coffees from December 2014, the Sumatra Mandheling and the Indian Monsooned Malabar. Not boring just comfortable!

Then for something new…sort of, we have an even older friend back for a long visit, the Kinyangurube Gakana from Burundi. This is one coffee I have been looking forward to having in again.

Something warm for a cold January 2015.

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Grinder Experiments: So Far………

Coffee grinders are a must. Here in the shop I have a Swiss made Ditting that I use for everything. It is a great grinder. Easily adjustable grind, fast (but not too fast), powerful. Well worth its rather high price tag. The consistency of its grind has also become the standard by which I measure other grinders.

I did have another, an expensive, fancy name brand, that I was using for the espresso side of things here but it gave out. When, in the course of my discussion with the manufacturer, I asked if they could guarantee that I wouldn’t have the same problem again I didn’t get a response. It would be nice to have another, but for now the Ditting will do.

At home we have used the same hand grinder for almost twenty years. Good quality hand grinders are quieter and generally more durable and usually less expensive than their electric counterparts. It is by Salter & Co. They no longer exist. For most of this time we have used the French Press as the go to coffee brewer. More recently Espresso, the AeroPress and the occasional pour-over have made their way into the home brewing scene.

With these other brewing methods came the need for more variety in the grind of the coffee. The old coffee grinder is adjustable but somewhat fiddly. In fact most hand grinders seem to be fiddly, and most good quality electric grinders, though quite adjustable, are noisy, rather large and very expensive (and the Ditting is a bit over-kill). So I looked for another hand grinder to use for Espresso.

The search continues, but this is what I have found so far………….

Salter & Co.

IMG_0375

Pros:

  • Nice size
  • Can be clamped to the counter or fastened to the wall allowing one handed operation
  • Durable cast metal construction
  • Fairly fast grind for a hand grinder

Cons:

  • Fiddly grind adjustment
  • Less consistent grind then the Ditting, and then I prefer

Hario Small Compact Grinder

Pros:

  • Nice compact size – good for campers, cyclists
  • Ceramic burrs
  • Quiet
  • Fairly consistent grind

Cons:

  • Fiddly grind adjustment but less so than the Salter
  • Grind adjustment slips
  • Mostly plastic construction
  • Two hand operation – have to hold onto the grinder while operating
  • A little slower than I really want

Porlex Mini Grinder

IMG_0380

Pros:

  • Nice compact size – again good for campers, cyclists
  • Ceramic burrs
  • Quiet
  • Quite consistent grind (a bit more consistent then the Hario)
  • Mostly metal construction

Cons:

  • Fiddly grind adjustment but less so than the Salter – similar to the compact Hario
  • Two hand operation – have to hold onto the grinder while operating
  • Again a little slower than I would like

Hario Small Box Grinder

IMG_0384

Pros:

  • Nice compact size – though not what I would carry on a camping trip
  • Fairly robust construction with a classic look
  • Ceramic burrs
  • Quiet
  • Relatively consistent grind – closer to the Porlex than its little brother

Cons:

  • Fiddly grind adjustment
  • Two hand operation – have to hold onto the grinder while operating
  • A little slower than I really want

Antique Peugeot Box Grinder

IMG_0366

Pros:

  • Looks great! (Though not a camping accessory.)
  • Very durable cast iron construction
  • Fairly quiet but not as quiet as the Porlex
  • One handed operation
  • Faster grind then others
  • Can be attached to the counter top
  • Can grind large amounts at time

Cons:

  • Fiddly grind adjustment similar to the Hario box grinder
  • Still a little slower than I really want
  • Rather large
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Seasonal Schedule and January Shutdown / Calendrier saisonnier et la fermeture de Janvier

Christmas and New Year’s days fall rather oddly this time round.

That being said for that week the schedule for Art Brûlant is as follows:

  • December 23, 2014 Open 10:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • December 24, 2014 Open 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
  • December 25 & 26, 2014 Closed
  • December 27, 2014 Open 10:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • December 28 & 29, 2014 Closed
  • December 30, 2014 Open 10:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • December 31, 2014 Open 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
  • January 1 to 14, 2015 Closed
  • January 15, 2015 Regular hours recommence

Please note that during the period that Art Brûlant is closed you will still be able to find coffee at Value Mart and Café 349 also serves a nice cup.

————————————

Noël et les jours du Nouvel An tombent assez bizarrement cette fois.

Cela étant dit pour cette semaine le calendrier de Art Brûlant est comme suit:

  • 23 décembre 2014 Ouvrir 10h00-17h00
  • 24 décembre 2014 Ouvrir 10h00-16h00
  • 25 décembre & 26, 2014 Fermé
  • 27 décembre 2014 Ouvrir 10h00-17h00
  • 28 décembre & 29, 2014 Fermé
  • 30 décembre 2014 Ouvrir 10h00-17h00
  • 31 décembre 2014 Ouvrir 10h00-16h00
  • 1 à 14 janvier 2015 Fermé
  • 15 janvier 2015 heures régulières recommencent

Se il vous plaît noter que pendant la période Art Brûlant est fermé, vous serez toujours en mesure de trouver le café à Valu Mart et Café 349 sert également une bonne tasse.

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Featured Roast/Torréfaction de la semaine: Cuban Caracolillo, Jamaican High Mountain, Etc.

As I said for the last posting on featured roasts I brought back the Cuban Caracolillo to coincide with the Stocking Stuffers Exhibit . I have not had it in stock for a little while and it is nice to have it back.

In addition to the Caracolillo for the season’s offerings I have also roasted up some Jamaican High Mountain. This is not the coffee from the Blue Mountains of Jamaica and as such does not have the right to bear that label. It is still a very good coffee. This particular batch is from the Baronhall Estates of Jamaica. The cup I am sipping now is full bodied, smooth, with lots of depth, a pleasant acidity and after taste.

And for a little bit of an edge in the selection I have also roasted up some Indian Monsooned Malabar.

For more on the Monsooned Malabar try this and for more on the Cuban Caracolillo try this.

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And I Quote, “Worth Dumpster Diving For!”

A Guest Post by Michael Peterson

I have been getting my coffee from Raymond at Art Brulant, my local artisan coffee roaster in Shawville, Quebec for some time now. If I run out while in Ottawa I occasionally buy a pound from Bridgehead, the roaster in Ottawa. Raymond’s coffee is preferable because he does his own blends and takes the time to explain about coffee. It’s personal.

Trish and I recently went on a three-day trip to Barrie and Parry Sound. Our route took us below Algonquin Park through Bancroft just for the scenery. It wasn’t part of the planning to consider food or coffee but in this day you would think a decent cup of coffee is not too much to expect. Well apparently it is. Lunch and coffee in Griffin was a mistake.  Our first night was in a hotel in Barrie with dinner at a high-end (read high-priced) steak house with passable food at an inflated price – someone has to pay for the expensive decor. Coffee and sandwich in a local indi coffee shop was ok but we both noted it wasn’t Raymond’s coffee.

Second night in Parry Sound – arriving in a snow storm that dumped a foot of snow in a very short time – and a stay at a delightful B&B. Dinner was a short walk to an excellent meal at a bistro. Didn’t do coffee as it was too late in the day. Great breakfast at the B&B but we both noted again that it wasn’t Raymond’s coffee.

We took the Huntsville, Algonquin Park and Renfrew route back home and stopped at the farm to get Raymond’s coffee from our supply. At last. Arriving back in Ottawa late at night we just tossed the trip garbage into the bin and unpacked things before going to bed for a well deserved sleep.

With the noise of the city I was awake at 3:30 and decided to relax, read a bit and then went to prepare the coffee for the usual morning espresso. I then realized that we had forgotten the coffee at the farm. Getting back into bed I mentioned to Trish that we had forgotten Raymond’s coffee at the farm and had no coffee at all for the morning. She insisted we did not forget it. It was in a bag very similar to the bags that we carried the garbage in.

Oh oh. I had tossed the coffee in the dumpster! It was 4:30 in the morning but we quickly realized that, as we were late getting home, there was probably not much garbage on top of what we had put in a few hours before. We retrieved the coffee after only a few minutes.

Ah, Raymond’s coffee. Worth dumpster Diving For. A new advertising slogan Raymond?

M

Beaux Arbres

(I must admit, shamelessly, that when Trish and Michael shared their story with me I asked them to get it to me so I could post here! – Raymond)
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