Monthly Archives: December 2009

NOTES FROM THE CUPPING TABLE

| December 11, 2009

Wonderful coffees on the table today from Ethiopia, Mexico, Peru and Flores. Definitely a nice change of pace from Wednesdays coffee and chicory experiment!

Here are the tasting notes from todays cupping-

ETHIOPIA- Aromas of sun dried blueberry, sun scorched earth and enticing spice notes. A medium bodied coffee with moderate acidity displaying profound blueberry flavors upfront- tapering into subtle citrus notes balanced with layers of earth, spice and dark chocolate throughout.

MEXICO- Subtle aromas of tangerine, caramel and dark chocolate. Mellow and subdued in the cup, showing subtle smokiness up front with harmonious layers of dark chocolate, baking spice and nougat balanced with mild acidity and a lush, velvety body. A sweet, smokey finish beckons another taste.

PERU- Warm, alluring aromas of dark berry, creme brulee and milk chocolate. Prominent dark berry flavors up front tapering in to dark chocolate and citrus tones finishing with subtle honey and herbaceous accents. A moderately full bodied coffee with well balanced acidity and a sweet, lasting finish.

FLORES- Heavy, robust aromas of earth, spice and smoke. Deep, rich flavors of dark chocolate, earth and subtle smokiness throughout the cup with low acidity and a full body. Nice dark chocolate nuances in the dissipating, smokey finish.

A great cupping today displaying the complexity, depth and diversity of world class coffees from Africa, Central/South America and Indonesia. Thanks to all those who participated today and a friendly reminder to visit CAFFE VITA-Capitol Hill- 1005 E PIKE ST- EVERY WEDNESDAY and FRIDAY @ 10 AM for our FREE coffee cupping!

CAFFE VITA teams up with The Dandy Warhols to bring you an Italian Holiday Celebration

| December 11, 2009


This Friday, Saturday, and Sunday Caffe Vita is joining forces with renowned Portland rock band the Dandy Warhol’s to celebrate a Fellini inspired Italian Holiday fete. Vita will be providing free espresso and *gelato affogato at the three (nearly) sold out shows.

Grab Tickets here:

December 11th at Neumo’s in Seattle (21+)
December 12th at The Wonder Ballroom in Portland (21+)
December 13th at The Wonder Ballroom in Portland (All ages)

A Word From The Dandy Warhol’s

As Dandy Warhols, we like to take a different approach to Christmas: a little more Old World and a lot more jaunty. We are on a mission to convince Christendom that Italy does it best. But these things take time; Rome wasn’t bilked in a day. Easing into the task we commence this year with our annual Christmas shows with the introduction of a sliver of sunny Italy to the Northwest’s dreary environs. Just a taste, a Fellini twist on the usual Dandys holiday performance.

All three of these shows will be celebrated in the spirit of Italian Christmas, complete with themed drinks at the bar, hand picked by each band member…plus, keeping with our Italian theme: Limoncello! Fancy Italian Coffees! Gelato! Oh my!

NOTES FROM THE CUPPING TABLE

| December 9, 2009

As you know, CAFFE VITA goes through great lengths to source, roast and serve the finest quality coffee available. In pursuit of this endeavor, CAFFE VITA regularly pays premiums far and above the industry average to ensure that we receive coffee of superior quality and support all levels of the coffee supply network.

Recently I have been reading a lot on the history of coffee and, in the midst of our current recession have become rather intrigued about periods of economic hardship and limited coffee supply. What happens to the coffee world during such times and what steps do roasters, cafes and coffee houses take to keep people drinking their beloved coffee? What lengths would you go to if coffee as we know it was simply no longer available?

You’d be surprised at the possibilities, alternatives and substitutes people would try to pass off as coffee, none of which come anywhere remotely close to the aromas, flavors, nuances, comforts or other distinguishing qualities we know as coffee. But, necessity is the mother of invention and during difficult times, one variation -coffee blended with chicory- was developed and actually found a niche amongst coffee drinkers in Europe and in parts of the southern United States, notably, New Orleans, LA.

I was able to track down some of this blend of coffee and chicory and thought I would do a taste test to see how palatable this coffee alternative is. This of course was a blind taste test in order to give each sample a fair chance of being identified. I brewed the coffee and chicory through a french press and compared it to a french press of our CAFFE LUNA, a robust french roast blend of coffees from Indonesia, Central and South America. The results were shocking!

The coffee and chicory blend had some interesting robusta like qualities of earthy, peppery aromas layered with depths of cinnamon and sweet tobacco smoke. It was tremendously viscous in the cup looking like watered down motor oil. The flavors were borderline unbearable, tasting like generic coffee with overwhelming acidity and a tremendously bitter aftertaste. Very little resemblance to coffee at all- the only real similarities were in the body, full and viscous and the color of the brew as well.

This was really no contest for CAFFE LUNA- a standout coffee in any arena displaying heavy, smokey aromas complementing maple, vanilla, nougat and dark chocolate flavors. A full-bodied, low-acidity coffee with a sweet, buttery, lingering finish.

A fun experiment in coffee tasting and rest assured CAFFE VITA will continue to go through extraordinary efforts to source, roast and serve the finest coffee available and WILL NOT be brewing up coffee and chicory any time soon! CAFFE VITA is, however offering 12 oz bags of our featured coffee of the day for $8.95 as well as our HOLIDAY BLEND for $10.95 at ALL of our retail locations, so stop by and try some of our world class coffees!

And dont forget to visit our FREE weekly coffee cuppings EVERY WEDNESDAY & FRIDAY @ 10 AM @ CAFFE VITA- CAPITOL HILL- 1005 E PIKE ST.

Our Coffee + Chocolate of The Month Club makes GQ 50 best Holiday Gifts

| December 8, 2009

Every month we hand select one of our Farm Direct coffees or expertly crafted blends and carefully match it with a remarkable bar of Theo chocolate. Expect a 12oz bag of Caffe Vita coffee and a bar of Fair Trade Theo Chocolate. We include tasting notes and specifics about the origins of each product. $66/3 months, $122/6 months, $250/year.

ORDER BY DEC. 15th and we will have the first shipment delivered to you or someone you want to surpise by DEC. 24th. Click here to order.