Welcome to my first coffee blog! I’ve had a lot of ideas brewing and It’s been a lot of fun sharing ideas and all the coffee talks with friends to get to this point. To my family and friends I tip my mug and say thanks and cheers!

So, I’m going to start being a coffee geek right from the beginning.

Coffee 101 is now in session…

Whether you savor each sip of that delicious black elixir or gulp it first thing in the morning for the caffeine fix, there is no denying coffee is a vital part of our everyday existence, it has been for a long, long time. Coffee has been both part of religious rituals in some cultures and banned by other cultures. Today, coffee is the #2 most traded commodity after oil, that’s a lot of java! Bottom line, we, the inhabitants of this earth, like our cup’a joe.

There seems to be a lot of lore on the exact origin of coffee.

The story I’ve heard was that coffee was first believed to grow in parts of Africa and was discovered by a goat herder whose goats had eaten the little red berries the bushes they grew on and the herder found his goats were extremely playful and even peppy. I guess he was also the first barista.

The beans themselves are actually a seed found inside the fruit, called a cherry. There are usually two seeds per cherry, the cherry is about the size and look of a cranberry.

While there is a lot of corporate advertising and hoopla about the different kinds of coffee.

There are really only two varieties of coffee that we drink, arabica and robusta. Arabica has a richer flavor, where robusta has a higher caffeine level and is more bitter than the arabica beans.

Your cup of coffee is made up of several (hopefully good) characteristics. Your first taste is the smell. Much like wine, coffee can be strong, floral, nutty, etc.. The acidity does not mean sour, the acidity is the coffees tartness. Most folks I’ve talked with lean towards full, medium or rich body versus a thin or weak or watery body. Then, and finally, there is the flavor. Is it earthy or fruity (which is good) or bitter (yuck)?

I roast coffee in small batches using a non computerized drum roaster over gas flames.

The roasting process itself is short, less than 15 minutes. The beans need to breath or de-gas for 2-3 days before using. The beans should be stored in an air tight container and not in the refrigerator as condensation dries the coffee and oils. The beans should be ground before each use if possible and brewed with cold, filtered water. The coffee should be used within two weeks of opening your bag of coffee.

Each of the above overviews will be expanded over time and will be the subjects of future coffee blogs.