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Any roasters open for wholesale? Drop me a line on private.

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CoffeeGeek
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I got a rather lovely email today from a program CoffeeGeek helped fund last year with the raising of almost $15,000 for our last Coffee Kids fundraiser. The program is Las Nubes, an afterschool program in Guatemala. We, along with Peets Coffee, helped fully fund the program for 2 years.

Because Coffee Kids (the old one; a new version of Coffee Kids has been reborn, but I have to learn more about it) closed down in January 2015, funding for the future of the Las Nubes program is in doubt; they don't currently have a 501.c3 registered sponsor NGO in the US to work with them. I've been working some back channels to see if we can find them a suitable partner and continue the fundraising for them going forward in 2016 and 2017 and beyond.

But we were able to secure the program's viability for 2015 and now through 2016. And I got an amazing email from them today that had these two lovely images.

 http://www.lasnubesguate.com/
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Keep up the good work! !
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CoffeeGeek
owner

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Happy Holidays Everyone!
 
Happy Holidays Everyone!
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Mark P. (CoffeeGeek)
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If you are in Vancouver on Thursday, July 24, there is a nice coffee social event going on at Matchstick Coffee. This is not my event, but it is an open event for all who love great coffee. From the organizer, Spencer Viehweger, co-owner of Matchstick:

We always love opportunities to get together with other baristas, share thoughts and ideas on coffee, and generally just get to know each other better. We had a unique experience of this at the TED conference this year, where we had the opportunity to not only chat coffee, but actually make it together with baristas that we didn't know very well, many of whom we were meeting meeting for the first time. 

We are hoping to expand on this experience a bit more with an open house. We will be closing shop for the evening, and opening up our espresso machine and brew bar for baristas to make coffee together. We also wanted to give people a chance to work with a coffee they were less familiar with, so we will be bringing a sampling of each coffee from Tim Wendelboe's current offer list. We will set up one or two cuppings, and give baristas a chance to work with each of the espressos and filter coffees via various filter methods. We will have both Chemex and Aeropress available, with either paper or Able filters, but you're welcome to bring any brew method of your choosing!

I know that evening is not an ideal time to drink coffee, but we'll make sure there are lots of spit cups available. 

Fortunately, we'll also be featuring a delicious line-up of local craft beer to balance out the caffeine! We will be donating half the beer sales at the event to a coffee project at El Diamante in Guatemala. 

I'm excited about this event, for the opportunity to try out some unfamiliar coffee, having the chance to learn from our incredibly knowledgeable coffee community, and being able to raise a bit of money to help out a fantastic producer, Patricia Perez. 

This is being held at Matchstick Coffee's Georgia Street Location.
http://www.matchstickcoffee.com/
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Mark P. (CoffeeGeek)
moderator

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OBrew Prototype Initial Thoughts
Today I got a late prototype of a live (but ending soon) Kickstarter product - the OBrew. It is going for $20, and funding is really low right now. 

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/769235125/obrew-a-simple-coffee-brewing-method

It's a well made product by the looks of it. A very flexible, grippy, spongy silicone tube that very carefully holds on to stainless steel mesh. The colour is not the best in my photos (I haven't edited these); the green is a true Kickstarter Green colour. Think Neon Green.

So how does it work? It's basically a flexible cup sieve you use to filter grounds from a pot of coffee. You brew your coffee, immersion style, inside any vessel. Let steep, then pour through this sieve. Depending on your brewing vessel, most of the grounds stay behind. 

In operation, I thought it worked fairly well. The sieve is wide, so it won't work on smaller diameter cups. 8oz and above cups should be fine. Technically you can brew almost any volume, since this is just a pass through design (brew passes through, grinds stay behind) but sticking to the 200-400ml brew sizes seems to work best with this device.

Fines... fines do get through. More sediment that a press pot, in my five brewing tests. But they are more "fines" than the typical grit from a press pot - in other words, all the particles are smaller than the typical leftovers from a press pot pour, but there are more of them. One of my photos shows the fines from a 250ml brew.

There's more fines because of the pass through filtering - in a press pot, most of the fines and solid grounds sit at the bottom of the pot and below the filter. Pressing down pushes some of those fines through, but it's not the same effect as pouring water through a filter - gravity can do more fines delivery than resistance filtering.

How it sits - it sits on your cup slightly bowled in - I'd say the concave dip is about 5-8mm (less than a centimeter). Enough to keep grounds sitting in place, but the more coffee you brew, the more will clump on top of this filter when you pour.

Cleaning? Dead simple. Rinse, done.

The product has other uses as well - it can be a on demand sieve for straining during cooking (pouring into smaller vessels); has uses for tea too.

Do I recommend it? Well, if you are super tight for space (say a college dorm or travelling), it's a good replacement for a press pot. No glass to break (well, except for your glass coffee carafe, but you can use other vessels to brew the coffee in), folds flat, super easy to clean, you know the score. For travel, this is a great option, and for travel, I do recommend it.

If you want a superior cup of coffee though, this might not be the best choice for immersion brew. While I don't mind fines making it to the cup, many do; that said, this product isn't finalised yet, and who knows, if it really takes off on Kickstarter, maybe the inventor can offer different sieve options - finer, coarser etc. A finer sieve (or double sieve) might dramatically reduce the fines that make it through.
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CoffeeGeek
owner

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Know about coffee and can write well? Read this!
 
Do you know a lot about coffee and espresso? Have some opinions on where coffee should be going? Do you know how to interview people in the world of coffee with insight and purpose? Do you train or teach things about coffee and espresso?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, and you are a good writer, capable of meeting deadlines, there are several paid writing gigs coming up soon and you could be a good fit.

If you are interested, please reply to this post, or message me +Mark P. via Google+ for more details.
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Hey guys!
Last night I ended the year with a shot of Espresso and a milk chocolate Lacey Cookie when this question came to mind- How much Crema is too much Crema? I've shared this question on Instagram (@NapoHBarista) as well and got some interesting feed back. What do you think? Happy New Year!
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Jesse Nice

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His expression says it all.

"It smells like unhappy children."
This is what happens when you make a certified coffee instructor taste-test coffees from a can.
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Mark P. (CoffeeGeek)
moderator

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CoffeeGeek is hiring folks. We're looking for a PHP programmer with good, varied, and independent skills for a major project.

Details here:
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