Nicaragua Trip – The Farms and the Farmers – Part 4

After blindly cupping and scoring over 50 coffees at Las Segovias; Joe, Agim and I chose some coffees we thought would work really well as espresso. The first coffee we chose had an overwhelming honey aroma. It was really sweet and caramely. We all scored it around the 88 mark. This coffee was a small

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Strada – The Road to the Perfect Espresso

It has been a long journey for espresso machine manufacturer La Marzocco.  Since the early 20th century the Florence-based company has been producing exceptional coffee machines; more than a decade into the 21st century, they continue their legacy.  Those familiar with La Marzocco will recognise the names of some of their latest mechanical marvels: the

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Burundi Cup of Excellence – Part 2

Today is the opening of the Burundi Cup of Excellence competition.  We met for a casual breakfast before heading over to the venue down the road.  It is a relatively new building compared to what I have seen so far in Burundi, two storeys with tinted blue glass windows.  Upstairs we can hear the hustle

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Burundi Cup of Excellence 2013

Anyone unfamiliar with the annual Cup of Excellence competition could be forgiven for thinking of it as a simple process.  You taste coffee and say which one is the best right?  Well…yes…but the level of intricacy, hard work and dedication that goes into its conception is astronomical!  Cup of Excellence is something that has quite

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Nicaragua Trip – The Farms – Part 3

Il Bendicion We spent the next couple of days visiting a few farms in Nueva Segovia. This was my first origin trip and I was chomping at the bit to get there. Most of the farms were within an hour from Ocotal. The first farm we visited was called La Bendicion.  One thing I noticed

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Nicaragua Trip – Beneficio Las Segovias – Part 2

Benefiico Las Segovias is a dry mill, focused on specialty coffee and working with over 200 farms in the Nueva Segovia region. The mill is located in the town of Ocotal and owned and managed by Luis Balladeras Moncada. Luis also owns and manages some of his own coffee farms. Our tour began with an

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Nicaragua Trip – Coffee Encounters – Part 1

I have always been a big fan of Central American coffees, I think the combination of the mild acidity and chocolate, honey and citrus flavours lend themselves well to espresso coffees, so I was really excited when asked by Smudge Publishing to be involved in their Coffee Encounters book and assist them with featuring Nicaragua.

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Gourmet Escape 2012

We were lucky enough to spend last weekend at the magnificent Leeuwin Estate Winery as part of the inaugural fine food and wine event – Gourmet Escape. I love the Margaret River region, with it’s awesome beaches and great wineries it’s one of my favourite places to spend time, so I jumped at the chance

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Mercanta and London School of Coffee

Travelling across to Europe with the family, London would be our last stop. I was returning to my place of birth and one of the largest, most revered cities in the world. It would be a chance to catch up with friends and family and the first time my kids would get a chance to

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Roasted in WA – Brazil Fazenda Rainha

Country : Brazil City : Pocos de Caldas Region : Mogiana (Minas Gerais) Variety : Yellow Bourbon Process : Pulped Natural Cup Profile : Complex and bright with lovely honey sweetness and notes of cherries and dark chocolate. The Fazenda Rainha was a finalist in the Cup of Excellence editions : 2000, 2001, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 (Cup of

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