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Blog

Passport Series: Brazil

Paul Haworth

If Ethiopia is the birthplace of coffee, Brazil is where it went to business school. Really though, coffee as a globally traded commodity has been more impacted by Brazil then any other country of origin. The saying goes that when Brazil sneezes, the rest of the coffee world catches a cold. Anyone who wants to understand how coffee prices have been (and still are being) set, learn why Fair Trade was established, or glimpse the full potential of highly mechanized coffee production cannot do so without learning about Brazil.

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Passport Series: Ethiopia

Paul Haworth

Specialty coffee can be grown in many parts of the world. The main requirements are a tropical climate and proper altitude. The differences found in coffee producing regions of the world are exciting and easy to decipher when you know a few basic conditions that contribute. We will be spending some time exploring these conditions as we go region by region. We will start in Ethiopia since it's considered the 'birthplace of coffee.'

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Why Do Roasters Go To Origin?

Paul Haworth

It may seem like a silly question, but let's really think about this. Obviously, there is more than one reason for a coffee roaster or buyer to travel to where their product is actually grown. There are three main categories of motives we can discuss. First is the qualitative element; a buyer will be able to taste many coffees and earmark the handful that fit his or her requirements. Second, we have the marketing aspect. Being able to say that you met a farmer and bought their coffee is very impressive. Finally, there is the rejuvenation of passion that can only be attained in an environment of origin.

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Café Series: The Tip Jar

Paul Haworth

Tipping is a mostly American phenomenon. In restaurant culture it becomes a legal loophole which allows employees to be paid less than the federal minimum wage. It is considered so compulsory that many restaurants' printed checks will include a calculation tool or even add a non-negotiable gratuity line item for larger parties.

Coffee shops aren't allowed this loophole, but tipping has still found its way into the café. On the surface, it seems like a nice way for customers to express how much they appreciate service. There is value, however, in a bit of critical thinking about this tradition.

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Café Series: The Third Space

Paul Haworth

We will be doing a blog series on café culture. Though our mainstay is promoting home coffee craft, your experiencing a filter and/or espresso shop is inevitable. For example, most roasteries double as coffee houses, for better or for worse. The café is a treasure trove for points of critical thinking about the state of our culture and the specialty coffee industry as a whole. Let's spend some time thinking together about what it all means.

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Less Coffee, More Experience

Paul Haworth

Coffee professionals are often asked how many cups they consume in a given day. If you aren't one of them (and haven't ever asked the question) the answer may surprise you. Does a single cup per day seem crazy? It is actually pretty common for this to be the case. Some prefer as few as 5 ounces while others may consume as many as 12, but rarely do you find a specialty coffee pro who is drinking cup after cup as one might imagine. Why is this?

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Coffee Elevator Speeches

Paul Haworth

So you're ready to tell people about your coffee obsession? Maybe you're thinking you could actually entice some folks into joining your madness? We would like to offer you some of our favorite analogies and elevator speeches we have curated over the years. Some of them are direct answers to questions and others are more general. No matter what, it is best to maintain a sense of humor and admit that you are, in fact, insane. Insane for the bean!

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Resolutions & Coffee

Paul Haworth

You say you want a resolution? We have a few coffee related ideas for you to consider if you're looking for some challenges in this brand new year. Whether you are a total novice or a seasoned specialty coffee drinker, there are ways to expand your horizons and further your enjoyment that can play nicely with the fresh enthusiasm a reset calendar brings.

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