February 24, 2012

Event Tomorrow: For the Love of Coffee (CoffeeCON 2012 - Near Chicago)

Let's be clear. I am a fan. I am a fanatic. I love good coffee. I am in ecstasy with great coffee. But, alas of alasses, I am an amateur lover of the brown brew.

Kevin Sinnott is the real deal. He has put together an event west of Chicago. 


World’s Most Fanatical Coffee Consumer Creates First-Ever World Coffee Conference
CoffeeCON 2012 is an opportunity to journey into the world’s most amazing coffee varieties from around the world and learn about brewing, and even roasting, in every style imaginable. Top world amateur and professional coffee experts will present a wide variety of seminars and hands-on labs. Attendees will sample the world’s best beans and experiment with the latest brewing equipment. Exhibitors will include many high-end coffee roasters, coffee equipment manufacturers, coffee farmers and innovative coffee products. 

See the entire press release.

January 11, 2012

Starbucks® Blonde Roast Coffee Press Release


More Than Three Million Customers to Participate in National “Find the Roast You Love Most” Tasting Events


Click here to see downloadable versions Starbucks(R) Blonde Roast Coffee Available in Retail and Grocery Stores Beginning Jan. 10, 2012. (Photo: Business Wire)
 
SEATTLE, January 10, 2012 - Starbucks Coffee Company (NASDAQ:SBUX) today announced the availability of Starbucks® Blonde Roast, a lighter roast coffee from the company known for its signature dark roast, to meet the needs of the 54 million coffee drinkers in the U.S. who say they prefer a lighter roast coffee.* Starbucks® Blonde Roast will be available as a brewed option in Starbucks stores in the U.S. and is available in packaged coffee in Starbucks stores and where customers buy groceries in the U.S.

Perfecting a lighter roast coffee that delivers the great taste and quality customers have come to expect from Starbucks was achieved thanks to 40 years of sourcing, roasting and blending experience and an artful collaboration between Starbucks coffee quality team and roast experts.

“It took eight months and more than 80 different recipe and roast iterations before we landed on the exact flavor profile our customers told us they were looking for,” said Brad Anderson, master roaster for Starbucks. “They told us they wanted a flavorful, lighter-bodied coffee that offers a milder taste and a gentle finish. Starbucks® Blonde Roast delivers.”

The mellow and approachable coffee extends Starbucks Roast Spectrum to now include Starbucks® Blonde Roast™, in addition to the Medium and Dark Roast coffees on which the foundation of the company’s business was built. Starbucks® Blonde Roast selections include Starbucks® Veranda Blend™, Starbucks® Willow Blend™ and Starbucks® Decaf Willow Blend™.

To help coffee drinkers determine the coffee taste and intensity they prefer, Starbucks will host “Find the Roast You Love Most” tasting events in the U.S. from Jan. 12-14, at participating stores nationwide. The events will be hosted for three hours each day (times vary by market) and customers will be able to taste Starbucks® Blonde Roast alongside Starbucks® Medium Roast and Starbucks® Dark Roast coffees. Those who put their taste buds to the test will receive a sticker declaring their roast preference, as well as a free sample of Starbucks® Blonde Roast to brew at home, or a coupon for $1 off their choice of a pound of any Starbucks® coffee or any 8- or 12-pack of Starbucks VIA® Ready Brew. Similar tasting events will be held in Canada in early February.

“Starbucks® Blonde Roast is our answer to providing a premium lighter roast coffee to appeal to those that describe Starbucks® signature roast as too intense,” said Jeff Hansberry, president, Channel Development for Starbucks. “This new roast profile will allow us to increase our share of the brewed coffee market down the grocery aisle where a majority of coffee sales are in the light and medium roast categories. This segment of the market represents a $1 billion opportunity for the company in the U.S. alone.”

New Packaging Makes Finding a Favorite Coffee Easier
Customers spend approximately 60 seconds in the grocery aisle making a decision on what coffee to buy, and approximately 25 percent of shoppers leave the coffee aisle without making a purchase because either they can’t find what they’re looking for, or the premium coffee section doesn’t make sense to them.** Coinciding with the launch of Starbucks® Blonde Roast is the introduction of new Starbucks® coffee packaging organized by roast – Starbucks® Blonde Roast, Starbucks® Medium Roast, and Starbucks® Dark Roast – to help customers find their favorite Starbucks® coffee.
“We know customers are frustrated when it comes to finding the coffee that is right for them,” said Hansberry. “Organizing our coffees by Starbucks® Blonde, Medium, and Dark Roast will make it easier for shoppers looking for coffee to find the taste that appeals to them.”

Offering Variety is Important Given Coffee’s Appeal
In a recent study commissioned by Starbucks, 40 percent of coffee drinkers surveyed said they couldn’t live without coffee, even for a week, when compared to a cell phone, romance, sports, and social networking. When asked about their daily routines, 40 percent of coffee drinkers surveyed also ranked coffee over showering.***

Beginning Jan. 10, 2012, Starbucks® Blonde Roast will be available in the following offerings:
  • Starbucks® Veranda Blend™ as a brewed option in Starbucks stores in the U.S.
  • Starbucks® Blonde Roast whole bean in Starbucks stores in the U.S. and Canada
  • Starbucks® Blonde Roast whole bean and ground coffee where groceries are sold in the U.S.
  • Starbucks VIA® Veranda Blend™ in Starbucks stores in the U.S. and Canada
  • Starbucks® Veranda Blend™ K-Cup® Packs where groceries are sold in the U.S.
  • Starbucks® Veranda Blend as a brewed option in Starbucks stores in Canada in February
* Starbucks Consumer Research 2010;
** SmartRevenue Coffee/Tea Aisle Path to Purchase Research, May 2011;
*** Starbucks U.S. Regional Roast Preferences Study, Dec. 2011

About Starbucks Corporation
Since 1971, Starbucks Coffee Company has been committed to ethically sourcing and roasting the highest-quality arabica coffee in the world. Today, with stores around the globe, the company is the premier roaster and retailer of specialty coffee in the world. Through our unwavering commitment to excellence and our guiding principles, we bring the unique Starbucks Experience to life for every customer through every cup. To share in the experience, please visit us in our stores or online at www.starbucks.com.

December 15, 2011

Double Shot Thursday

Today is Thursday. It is better than most Thursdays in that it is double shot Thursday. Two shots of espresso, pulled long.

Actually, it is like all other Thursdays here in Brockeimia, and much like all other days of the week. I have double shots of espresso every day.

What about you?

December 8, 2011

December 1, 2011

The next DIY frontier: roasting coffee beans at home

The next DIY frontier: roasting coffee beans at home
Raw coffee beans get the do-it-yourself treatment as java aficionados jump at the chance to roast their own blend.

Story in the LA Times.

November 23, 2011

Coffee may prevent endometrial cancer: How much does it take?

(CBS) Scientists have identified another possible health benefit of coffee. A new study ties drinking lots of the stuff to a big drop in the risk for endometrial cancer.

read more

September 5, 2011

The Best Cafes

Coffee Humor Tin Metal Sign You Can Sleep When You're Dead
The best cafes sometimes serve the worst coffee, bringing in the fullness of humanity. 


There are no tourists at these places. There is no ambiance that would draw people just because of whatever is on the wall. The owners did not hire an interior designer, or put fake bricks on the wall. No one talks about it as the place to be. It is not referenced as a "best dive cafe," as if it has that pretentious badge of ignominious honor. 


It might serve espresso, but don't expect much. The beans might not be single plantation, and no cupper has ever tasted the nuances. Baristas don't wear goatees or unusual piercings, hoping to be artsy. They aren't even called baristas. They are called owners, or friends of the owner, or, simply called employees.

It is not next to anything. The university students don't go there after class, or to study, hoping a cute girl shows up. No after theater latte drinkers. No anything, yet it is next to everything.


People go there on their way to places, and from places. If they stop there, it is because it is convenient, big enough, and maybe offer free refills. No one goes there. People just end up there, and come back whenever.

September 4, 2011

Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz is Ruining Coffee

I'm getting tired of Schultz. He's just another billion dollar corporate suit ranting politics. Give me better coffee, Howard, not your political claptrap.

It is no help Schultz, according to Wikipedia, is worth 1.1 billion. The image of Starbucks is more organic than it is Montgomery Burns. Money buys great PR, but all we get is a guy making more money than 99.999% of the world. 

My Starbucks boycott just began. Join me.

Starbucks' Facebook status update: Our ceo, Howard Schultz, is part of a National Town Hall conversation with America. Join him on the live stream, Tuesday night at 7:30pm edt / 4:30pm pdt

Upward Spiral was inspired by the Letter to America written by Howard Schultz, the CEO of Starbucks. Upward Spiral encourages individuals and businesses to join together in an effort to help our nation’s elected officials hear our collective voice and to prompt our national leaders to take the necessary action to restore trust and confidence in the US economy.

July 10, 2011

Great for Everyday Espresso: Intelligentsia Coffee Black Cat- Regular, Whole Bean Blend (Misc.)

Great for Everyday Espresso: Intelligentsia Coffee Black Cat- Regular, Whole Bean Blend (Misc.)

This is what I drink (I usually rotate between Illy, Caribou's Sumatra and Black Cat). I first found it fresh in the Intelligentsia's Chicago Loop shop location, and now always buy it as fresh as I can. When I can, I prefer some of their single plantation beans, but the Intelligentsia Black Cat serves as nice everyday espresso.

Intelligentsia Coffee Black Cat- Regular, Whole Bean BlendSweet, a blend of several beans (Minas Gerais, Brazil and Santa Ana, El Salvador in this case), it finds an excellent balance that successfully avoids the burnt-bitter taste of other espressos.

Feel good about it being direct trade, but buy it because of the quality. Help yourself enjoy it by purchasing it with as few middlemen as possible. I often get mine at a local grocer, but it is already a week old.

Enjoy your next cup.

--Brockeim

Intelligentsia Coffee Black Cat- Regular, Whole Bean Blend