Friday, May 30, 2008

SCAE event

Yesterday we hosted the SCAE press conference for the upcoming Wonderful Coffee. The Danish SCAE chapter organised the event and all we had to do was open the doors and let them in. Danish Champion Søren Stiller Markussen, who also happens to be the National Coordinator for SCAE Denmark, made a presentation of his cappuccinos and signature drink. There will be a report from the event on EspressoBar

Last night we did the last training session with Søren. Now he's really well prepared and can enter repetition-mode, where he just has to rehearse his presentation over and over again till everything is spot on. His drinks and techniques are really solid and he's in good time to just get the last little details in place. We look forward to see him represent Denmark in the WBC.

On another note we got some sad news yesterday too: The Nordic Barista Cup 2008 in Finland has been canceled. We know Bjorg and Jens has put a tremendous amount of work in making this competition work, and we're sure it wasn't an easy decision to make. But it's better to cancel it than make an competition that wouldn't live up to the previous ones.

From the NBC website:

We are very sorry to inform you that Nordic Barista Cup 2008 has been cancelled.
We were not able to create the positive energy and economy needed to sustain the Nordic Barista Cup vision.

The next Nordic Barista Cup will be in Iceland in 2009.
See you there.

Jens and Björg
Nordic Barista Cup Administration

Monday, May 26, 2008

WBC approaching

Three and a half weeks till the World Barista Championship here in Copenhagen. By this time the baristas should have gotten their whole presentation together and hopefully they are just doing run-throughs of their set to practice from now till then.

At the Collective we're gearing up to the event already. We're training the Danish competitor Søren Stiller Markussen and trying to help out some of the people who's travelling from far away with getting some details in place. It's not an easy thing to bring in cups, glasses, milk, electronic devices, plants and ingredients from around the globe. I remember that all too well from my own days of competeing. We've recieved a lot of emails from competitors who would like to come in and train a bit on our GB5 just before the competition. Unfortunately we only have the one in our coffee shop for now, and it's being put to full use as it is. Personally, I don't think it matters much to have access to a machine so close to the competition if you're well prepared from home. Each competitor will get some training time on the WBC machines, so don't stress if you're a competitor and haven't gotten some arrangement for a machine when you arrive in CPH.

The WBC will be covered this year by the Danish online forum and coffee web site EspressoBar. They have made a site specific for the event: WBC on EspressoBar

On the site you will be able to read about the competitors of the different countries, get updates during the event and participate in the forum, where I'm sure there will be many questions and answers about the baristas' presentations. Go there already now for information about the competing baristas.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

FVH - the movie

Blogger presents...
A Coffee Collective Production...
Finca Vista Hermosa!

Just for fun I assembled this little video clip from my camera. I did nothing to make this look good or sound nice - so you can hear the real noise. Hopefully next time we go, we can bring a proper camera and show some more of what's going on at origin.

You can read (or re-read) our account of the trip here:
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Enjoy :-)

Friday, May 16, 2008


DK4's program Luksus visited us some weeks ago. Their filming and interviewing have come together in a nice little segment which you can view on DK4 at the following times:

17-05-2008 09:30
Luksus 08 (4)

19-05-2008 04:00
Luksus 08 (4)

20-05-2008 11:30
Luksus 08 (5)

Hope you'll be able to catch it, as it's not coming online.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Shakerato Time!

Summer time has come to Copenhagen (at least for a short visit). Over 20 degrees C in the shade this week, which is niiiice for us. It gets a little warm in the roastery when we're roasting, but we wouldn't dream of complaining.

But it means that our lovely americanos must clear the way for the awesome SHAKERATO! - A favourite drink amongst the collectivists. It's so fresh and prefectly balanced. There's no milk, which is nice since we're close to the beach season ;-) When shaken really well it gets a nice thick foam and if you drink it straight away the mouthfeel is amazing. It brings out a lot of fruitiness in our espresso blend, but this week we've made it with the light roasted Kenya AA Top, the Kariaini, and it's just a bomb of fruit! It's almost like a coffee juice.

Ice cubes in shaker - just below half full.
Simple Sugar Syrup 20 ml. over the ice.
Brew a double espresso (try our light roasted Kariaini, Kenya AA Top!).
Pour espresso into the shaker and let just cool for a couple of seconds..
Shake very well! With lots of energy!
Serve ...for yourself :-)

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Cupping FVH lots

When I was in Guatemala to visit Finca Vista Hermosa about a month and a half ago Edwin gave me samples of the different lots they have. He took it from the bags that were getting their reposo (resting period) - before it goes to the dry mill. So the beans were still in their parchment and needed to be hulled / dry milled and then sorted.

So, with a borrowed huller (Thanks Mads!) we dry milled all the samples in our office at the roastery back in Denmark.

Last week we sample roasted the lots and cupped it. It's really interesting to be cupping lots from a single farm. The picking and processing of these coffes are all the same. It's simply down to differet micro-climates from field to field. If understood Edwin correctly the mixture of varieties are pretty much the same on all lots and soil isn't much different within the farm.

The lots were all quite similar. For me it was hard to tell the difference when they were hot, but as they cooled down a bit the nuances came out and the characteristics of each lot became apparent. I wouldn't say the differences were huge. And they were all really good; clean, sweet, balanced, good acidity and full body. But we thought the El Mirador and the actual Finca Vista Hermosa lot were the best. So we did another round with those (blind) and the FVH lot came out on top. This is also the lot we got last year and now we're looking forward to the new crop.