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Friday
Aug292003

A Coffee Update

Coffee makersI'm a coffee lover who is always looking for ways to improve the coffee I drink. I've come across some revelations since I posted Good, Cheap Coffee back in June that I wanted to share.

First, I received some great comments on the Good, Cheap Coffee post, primarily from Daniel Stout and fellow Palm OS User Council member, Rachel, which got my mind thinking about making better quality coffee. Daniel offered suggestions about nice espresso makers, and the difference in quality between his old Krups (like mine) and his new Gaggia. He also mentioned how important fresh coffee is to the mix.

Well, as much as I would love a Gaggia or other high-quality home espresso machine, we can't really afford it at the moment. Darn. However, I was able to take Dan's fresh coffee suggestion to heart, by picking up some fresh espresso roast at Milwaukee's Alterra Coffee Roasters. Wow, that made a big difference in the flavor compared to the pre-ground Goya espresso I had been using.

Then, in August, fellow weblogger and coffee freak, Michael Ashby mentioned digging up an old Bodum French Press pot after his coffee maker busted and how much he was enjoying the excellent coffee it made. When I mentioned his post to my wife, she reminded me that the now defunct Coffee Trader (a very popular Milwaukee east-side coffee hangout in the 80s and 90s) used to serve tasty coffee in french press pots. Many memories of visits to the Coffee Trader and the delicious coffee they served, floated to the surface of my mind.

So, Inspired by Michael and memories of the Coffee Trader, I used a part of my PalmSource Champions $50 quarterly gift certificate to pick up a Bodum Chambord 8-Cup Coffee Press coffee maker. I should have it next week, and I can't wait to try it out! :-)

With my mind still on coffee, I re-read comments by Rachel on the original Good, Cheap Coffee post and saw that she loved the coffee she makes with her Italian stovetop Moka Pot. I had a stainless steel pot like this in my single days, and really loved the coffee, but have since lost track of my pot.

Then I remembered -- Gail and I had been given a Lavazza Carmencita moka pot and two demitasse cups as a wedding gift by Martin & Thea, two good German friends who had come over for our wedding. So, today at lunch, I located and dusted off the Lavazza, and cranked out several ounces of thick, rich espresso-like coffee on the stove. Mmmm, and was it ever good stuff!

So, I am happy to report that I'm re-learning ways to make really good coffee and it's still surprisingly cheap -- the Bodum French Press is only $30 and Moka Pots start at around $30 as well. Maybe they're a little more work than a Mr. Coffee drip maker, but the results are so much better.

Hey, have a great weekend!

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