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Blog

Filtering by Tag: whole bean

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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Is There A Right Way To Roast Coffee?

Paul Haworth

This may be the most hotly debated question regarding specialty coffee in our time. Roasting determines so much about what we ultimately experience in our coffee and is not a minor detail. It quickly goes from subtle to extreme when describing the ways different roasting styles interpret a coffee. We will attempt to be as objective as possible, as taste is ultimately a subjective and personal thing.

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Subscriptions

Paul Haworth

As a home coffee craftsperson, you are probably aware of the coffee bean subscription services that have recently hit the market. Some of these services are merely exponents of roasteries, offering a service which brings the beans to the customers' doors on a regular basis, with an initial upfront expense. Others are third party buyers who resell a variety of beans sourced from all over the country. Some of these third parties will build curated samplers or 'boxes' which ship regularly to provide the customer with a spectrum of specialty coffee, while others focus exclusively on helping the consumer find coffees they love and provide a consistent conduit for those beans. The third party services, which we will be focusing on here, all aim to connect roasters with consumers that otherwise would not have known about them.

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Roast Dates

Paul Haworth

Coffee is not the type of product that will carry an 'enjoy by' date. It is, however, becoming more and more common to see a 'roasted on' date printed on bags of beans. For the home coffee craftsman, this can be a very useful piece of information to take into account. It isn't like a perishable food product that might actually kill you if it is a little past its prime, but there is a window of ideal aromatic freshness that the consumer should know.

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