It's just a cup of coffee...

I am so grateful that some of my best friends are doctors, nurses, teachers and social workers and therefore regularly put what I now do for a living in perspective.

Maybe it's just me as I'm new to all this but I think we can get carried away and forget that all we are actually doing is adding hot water/milk to a roasted coffee bean, not saving lives. Don't get me wrong, you don't want to ask me any favours before I've been caffeinated first- as the life or death question may just come in to the equation.

Anyone who knows me will testify I'm quite opinionated and stubborn. I blame being born a Taurus for most of that and have also been accused of dictatorial habits when it comes to my views on food and coffee (yes it is true I have banned latte art on all coffees, it's for drinking not hanging on your wall), but I'm also very much of the view that espresso is king.

Though sometimes I think that leaves me in the minority of people in the coffee world.
Everywhere you look, online, on the street, there is a fascination with brew bars serving single origin (or perhaps not) coffees,  pressed, dripped or squeezed through the latest fabric of choice in receptacles that look like they came out of my cousin's chemistry set she got one year for Christmas in the 80's.

You see when I go for coffee anywhere in the world, I want that golden elixir that has been produced on a machine that is worth four times my car (granted I have a 13 year old Honda), via a high tech water filtration system and at a precise temperature for that particular roast with the perfect extraction time (24 seconds just happens to be ours). That I'm happy to pay for. That I just cannot reproduce at home, well not without re mortgaging the house and extending the kitchen.

Don't get me wrong, I love Sunday mornings where I sample different beans, usually in my stainless steel Bodum French press. Firstly having heated my stainless steel Stelton thermos (yes it was purchased in Copenhagen) and of course the cups, left it to brew for precisely four and half minutes before gently pressing down and transferring it to the thermos so it stops brewing and stays hot, yes proper hot for a good couple of hours.

 In my humble opinion, this with a few hours of Sunday paper reading is the setting for freshly pressed coffee. As getting the perfectly brewed filter coffee from whatever receptacle of choice, is not as easy as it looks or people think.

 For me the coffee shop experience is the espresso experience and the skill involved in ensuring the temperature is correct, the grinder is set to grind at exactly the right level of coarseness for exactly the length of time required, with exactly the right amount of coffee, which when tamped perfectly, produces the most intoxicating liquid for which a licence is not required, is something that I feel seems to have been over looked of late.

Perhaps we should focus time on training and competitions which showcase that particular skill (and no, drawing pictures on the top of it doesn't count). Alternatively the inaugural French press championships are launching at my place some Sunday morning soon....

 Views all my own and not representative of my employer, no wait....

Oh and for the cheap sales plug- if you want to purchase some of our beans to squeeze through your receptacle of choice- here you go



As Frank said...It was a very good year...

So according to my to-do list, this blog is a week late, but there is a very very good reason. Not procrastination, nothing to say (some wish...) or being busy running a coffee shop and online retail business. Nope for the first time in 12 years I've indulged in what my husband calls the best Sunday of the year. Teachers holidays...which started last Sunday in this house.

Whilst this may be his favourite day of the year, for me and all non teaching spouses, this was my worst Sunday of the year. I admit it; I was not a nice teacher’s wife in the summer. When you can basically count your holiday entitlement on your fingers and toes, the prospect of your other half having two months off brought out my inner demon.

For the previous 12 years, this took the form of endless to do lists, making as much noise as possible as I got ready and left the house at 7am, early morning texts and then phone calls..."are you up yet?" and inwardly cursing myself for not having made the same career choice, even though I know I wouldn’t have had the patience for the profession.

So whilst himself may not be happy that I have invaded his two months of peace and quiet, I intend as much as I possibly can to indulge in some of the perks of teachers holidays this year.

I have 12 years to make up for...

Since the last instalment- we have also had a little celebration of our first birthday at the end of June. Plying people with Carlsberg and espresso martinis (what else?!)- we welcomed in the start of year two at the Kaffe and with it- a few thank yous...

1- our amazing regulars- you make Kaffe O what it is and we have genuinely made some great friends over the year.

2- the amazing Kaffe O team- you guys have literally kept me alive in the past year and the Kaffe would be nothing without you.

3- my amazing (and extremely patient) family and friends- for carrying me through the highs and lows

4- my amazing graphic designer ( part time counsellor, advisor, IT and sound system expert) Paul McNally Design- for putting up with me for the past year

5- and finally my amazing husband- I promise not to steal your summer holidays this year.