One of the reasons we started the Coffee Compass was to bring attention to the many quality-focused cafes that are currently flying under the radar. Granted, the coffee scene in New York or London doesn’t really need the press, but the American heartland is filled with a growing number of committed baristas at craft coffee shops that deserve to have their story told. Depending on how their Kickstarter campaign goes, Flatlands Coffee in Bowling Green, OH might be the next one….
Archives for May 2014
Our ideal cafe consists of a simple but elegant space. It’s the kind of shop where you can pop in for a quick espresso, or read a book while you nurse a mug of autodrip. It should be easily accessible by bicycle or foot and staffed by hospitable baristas who don’t mind a little friendly banter. Of course, we would want coffee that is nothing short of exceptional. In other words, our ideal cafe looks a lot like Neptune Coffee in Seattle’s Greenwood neighborhood….
Good coffee doesn’t happen by accident. Intentional farming practices, skillful roasting, and precise brewing are just a few of the mind boggling number of variables that must be in place to produce a delicious cup of coffee. As such, we don’t usually find great cafes by accident either. Most coffee shops we visit were either recommended by trusted friends or renowned in the specialty coffee community. This makes our first visit to Upshot Espresso all the more serendipitous….
The annual trade show of the Specialty Coffee Association of America can cause even the more seasoned coffee professional to have an existential crisis. Do I watch the Barista Competition or Brewers Cup? Do I check out the single group Slayer or the nine group Synesso? Do I try to get my photo taken with James Hoffmann or Tim Wendelboe? Can I get my photo taken with James Hoffmann and Tim Wendelboe? The questions go on, and they’re overwhelming.
Lucky for you, our friends and partners at Prima Coffee shot plenty of video footage and captured some of the best new coffee products you might have missed at SCAA 2014. …
Our intimate coffee community in Louisville recently lost one of its brightest young coffee professionals to the coffee Mecca known as Seattle. We were excited to catch up with Chris Elliott at SCAA and ask him a few questions about his new role at Slayer Espresso.
It’s safe to say a lot of baristas would kill to work for a company like Slayer (get it?). What exactly will you be doing? Is this your dream job?
Usually, my work here fits quite neatly in a couple of categories: marketing and content. My job is to make Slayer look good, mostly through social media and writing for our website. Slayer is a small company, though, so I wear a lot of hats. Actually, I joke that I own the hat store. That should hint at the range of my work. Also, isn’t there a word for “hat store”? Let me ask @hermitudinous. Anyway, I’ve joined some serious momentum because the product has already made a lot of noise and the brand’s image is somewhat established. That makes my job a lot easier. And, yeah, this is exactly what I want to be doing right now. I’m crazy about coffee, but I really enjoy this unique view of the industry – from behind a desk, that is. I like to write and it turns out that there’s a lot to say about …
Generally speaking, making espresso at home is a bad idea. Even the cheapest equipment is expensive (and probably not worth buying), and unless you have a reverse osmosis filtration system, water quality will be a problem.
That being said, these new single group Slayer Espresso machines will make you throw all caution to the wind, sell your car, take out a second mortgage, open a catering company, or simply do whatever it takes to get one….
Kansas City is having a moment. The “Paris of the Plains” was an early adapter of third wave coffee, but in recent years the scene has hit a critical mass. A new breed of quality focused cafes coupled with a thriving local roaster scene makes KC one of the most exciting coffee destinations in the Midwest. In our opinion, any Kansas City cafe crawl would do well to start at Quay Coffee….