Coffee inspires creativity—this is merely an overflow of that. A bit of my coffee journey in the form of doodles and sketches.
June 26, 2012

I’m starting to see more and more space between each filter doodle—I used to try to do a filter every day to chronicle what I learned or brewed that day. Thankfully, it’s not because I’m losing steam—my time is split between this project, maintaining a balanced lifestyle, and being involved in some neat collaborations and freelance drawing projects. I try not to write a ton on here—it’s not my favorite thing to do, and I don’t feel like I have a ton to add that’s worth talking about—but I feel a need to thank the coffee community for being such a support, and for making this year such a special one for me already. I anticipate some really cool things in the future, and I appreciate each and every time I get to peel back the “internet curtain” and actually meet folks in the industry. So, thanks.

It’s always exciting to receive a new coffee—but its even more exciting to receive a new coffee from a roaster who’s raving about said coffee. I was lucky enough to get my hands on a bag of Panama Carmen from Kuma. Mark Barany—head roaster at Kuma—sent it over to me, knowing that the Panama Elida Estate crop from last year was one of my first loves.

 

In a conversation last week, Mark described the Panama Carmen as being full of “dried bing cherries, caramel, perfumed lime blossom, and green grapes.” It’s an extremely aromatic coffee—in fact, during brewing, I think it smells like berries and creme.

Be on the lookout for its launch in the near future—it’s a nice coffee to add to your queue. Also, if you’re a Kuma fan, check out the Chemex t-shirts we teamed up on—there aren’t many left!

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June 21, 2012

 

I recently worked on a fun project with specialty roaster and shop Cup Coffee— based Brisbane, Australia. You may recognize the name from a post DCILY did back in February about a beautiful video they produced.

Not too long ago, I received a nice care package from the guys at Cup that included some really great new coffees they just received. A couple Tanzanian coffees (Kimuli & Blackburn), a Guatemalan coffee (San Antonio), and Brazil Capao. I really enjoy all of them, and wish air travel wasn’t so harsh on coffees—but really, even after travel at high altitudes, these coffees came out on the other side alright.

Yesterday, I made a pourover of the Brazil Capao—which placed #22 in the Brazil Cup of Excellence. It came out chocolaty and nutty with a noticeable sweetness at the end.

It is from Piata, which is situated 568 km from Salvador, the most elevated region in Brazil’s northeast with the coolest climate.

The mature fruits (cherries) are picked in baskets and twice a day the coffee is transported by tractors to the hulling machine. The pulped coffee is spread in layers of 4cm on patios for drying and turned over about twenty times a day until it reaches an ideal moisture point.
Mr. Salvador Mesquita, coffee-grower since 2007, takes pride and care in his quality coffee production. From preparation of the land until final storage of the green beans.

 

Just want to say thanks to Josh over at Cup for sending these along—its much appreciated. Be on the look out for some new stuff on their website, including the project we collaborated on. I’m really excited to see how it turns out.

In the mean time, be sure to watch this lovely video they put together a couple years back.

CUP SPECIALITY COFFEE from PSN CREATIVE on Vimeo.

 

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June 15, 2012

Over the past few days, National Barista Champions, Brewers Cup Champions, and Coffee Professionals from all over the world have been gathered in Vienna, Austria for the SCAE’s “World of Coffee” event. One of the highlights of the event is the World Barista Championship. 

Over 50 baristas competed for the top spot this year, each bringing a unique and crafty routine to the table. First off, I’d like to say congratulations to all of the competitors for making it to this stage. These baristas represented not only themselves and their employers extremely well, but they brought into the forefront the behind-the-scenes work that goes into the coffee we drink—that is, the farmers, workers, and producers that ensure the highest quality bean possible before sending it along to a roaster.

This year, Mr. Raul Rodas from Guatemala dazzled the specialty coffee world with this professionalism and execution. Today’s doodle is a tribute to Mr. Rodas. Congratulations!

Be sure to read up on Raul’s victory thanks to @Sprudge, who also covered this event tirelessly, and kept the specialty coffee industry up to date, minute by minute. It’s much appreciated.

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June 12, 2012

Not too long ago, I had the pleasure of receiving some beautiful cloth filters from American Coffee Trader. I’ve liked brewing with cloth since I got my Hario Woodneck, so its nice to have a cloth alternative for nearly every brewing device I own. American Coffee Trader prides itself on using Organic Cotton, grown and made in the U.S.A.

Cotton cloth, as a coffee filter medium has been in use since around 1710. It was used much like a modern tea bag until the 1780′s, where the use of a coffee sock was employed. Since then, many fabrics and metals have been used in that shape, though none more rare than organic cotton.

This particular cotton was grown in Texas, woven in South Carolina, and carefully sewn in Boston, Massachusetts. These filters are all American made, 233 thread count organic cotton cloth.

From a design standpoint, these filters are beautiful. More importantly, though, I’ve enjoyed brewing through them—it seems that the cloth gives a nice balance of oils and crisp acidity with an extremely low sediment yield.* They clean pretty easy, and the creme color of the filters look great in contrast with the coffee while you’re brewing.

As we were chatting over email, one of the inspirations for these filters became evident—Simon’s Coffee Shop in Cambridge, Massachusetts.   Simon’s is a George Howell (Terroir) and Barismo account, both of which are respected, quality roasters. I had the opportunity to sit in on a session that George Howell led and I was amazed at the extent of his knowledge about coffee, and the level clarity he used to speak about it. All that to say, the fact that Simon’s uses Terroir as a coffee shows that they’re committed to excellence and to bring the people of Boston quality coffee. According to the guys, Simon was also one of the first to introduce the Hario V60 to the Boston coffee community.

Through our conversations, I found out that today was the tenth anniversary that the shop had been open. It seemed fitting that today’s doodle ended up on an American Coffee Trader Cloth Filter, and celebrates Simon’s accomplishment of 10 strong years in the Boston coffee community. Congratulations, and keep up the good work!

Be sure to check out American Coffee Trader Cotton Filters.

June 7, 2012

If you’ve been following along on social media at all over the past few weeks, you’ll know just how successful the Kickstarter launch of Able Brewing’s Kone Brewing System has been. Funded within the first day, and currently backed by over $73,000 worth of pledges from 665 backers, it’s obvious that this beautiful ceramic brewing vessel is highly anticipated by coffee lovers all over the world.

While I was in Portland, I got the chance to visit a few coffee spots with Keith Gehrke, founder of Able. One thing that impressed me about Keith was his thoroughness and appreciation for design and quality. As he explained the steps it takes to create a steel Kone, it became more evident than ever that Able Brewing is passionate about brewing coffee, and that they truly believe in their products. I really appreciated hearing that firsthand – it’s nice to see folks like him helping push the coffee industry forward.

There isn’t much I can add that hasn’t already been written about the new Brewing System, but this doodle is inspired by my visit to Portland, the launch of the new Able Brewing web site, and the immense success Able has had on Kickstarter. Congratulations!

While you’re waiting for the Kone Brewing System to come out, check out this beautiful video about Able, and read some of the write ups about the system.

Dear Coffee, I Love You

Sprudge

Able KONE Coffee Filter + Brewing System from jelani memory on Vimeo.

http://vimeo.com/43060229

 

 

 

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June 5, 2012

Today’s doodle seems like a bit of a cop-out, but I haven’t done any cartooning in a long, long time. My drawing style started out inspired by things like Where’s Waldo, Looney Tunes, and Calvin & Hobbes, and progressed from there.

Not sure what inspired this particular idea – ultimately, I pictured my Baratza Maestro with cartoon arms and legs and went from there. If there was a cartoon about coffee, I’d have to believe that the Grinder would play the Wile E. to the coffee bean’s Roadrunner.

I enjoyed a pourover of Water Avenue’s Las Margaritas from Colombia (generously sent by Craft). Right now, I’m stuck on a 27g:450 ratio that’s pretty tasty.

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June 4, 2012

Finished off one of my favorite coffees of the year this morning via Pourover.

The Kochere from Kuma is one of the more unique Yirgacheffes I’ve had, in that it didn’t have any blueberry notes.

Highly recommended in a press.

 

 

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June 2, 2012


Last week I received a nice package in the mail from the kind folks at Craft Coffee. I’ve always been a fan of what Craft does, so I was excited to finally get my first box of their multi-roaster, subscription-style coffee sampling.

This month featured Flying Goat Coffee, Kuma Coffee, and Water Avenue Coffee.

I enjoyed a French Press + Filtered cup of Water Ave.’s Las Margaritas. It’s a great coffee out of Colombia, and came out really nice in the press.

Since I stopped by Water Ave. for a cupping in Portland, I’d been wanting to get my hands on some of their coffee to try at home. Thanks to Craft for making that possible.

 

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