Category Archives: Hyde Park

When you do what you do, how do you do it? Drinking or Tasting Coffee

Cupping - not spooning!

When I was first introduced to the world’s second most traded commodity (i.e. coffee – just in case I had already lost you) I was simply  – like most people – a coffee drinker.  I loved the flavour, I loved the atmosphere of the coffee place, I loved the social and communal aspects of coffee – but I could down a latte pretty quickly, and tell you it was nice.  When I become more serious about coffee and purchased a half decent home espresso machine I was still an avid coffee drinker for all of the above reasons (well other than atmosphere – because I was making coffee in my family room – most likely with Octonauts on in the background…not quite Paddy’s Lantern or Bar9) but then a number of things happened which  encouraged me to consider more than just drinking coffee, but to also appreciate coffee for what, where and how it is what it is.

Firstly – I read the  book “God in a Cup: the obsessive quest for the perfect coffee” – which introduced me, on a far deeper level, to the world of speciality coffee – and the 400 or so taste variants that the experts can detect when they ‘taste’ their coffee – I took this as a challenge.

Then – I was introduced to the ristretto – a wonderful little coffee drink – the first 15mls of a single shot to be precise – which is super sweet, low on the caffeine, minus any bitterness  and highlights so much more of the unique bean qualities than does your average latte or cappuccino.

Ristretto from the Coffee Branch

Then I purchased some beans from Barossa Coffee Roasters, which came with tasting notes – including bean origin, and likely flavour profiles etc. and all of a sudden I was drinking my coffee in a more mindful way.  I began savouring the experience and seeing if I could detect the individual flavour nuances on the front of the tongue verses the back of the tongue – the dominant after taste etc with the result that my coffee drinking experience became much deeper and fulfilling.

If you are interested in developing your pallete from that of a coffee drinking to a coffee taster – check out this excellent post on the James Hoffman blog by clicking the link.  Also, for those in Adelaide – if you want to go that next step, Ian Callahan over at Bar 9 is conducting a Cupping Night next week – for more information, click HERE – so wish I could make it!!

If you need to see how it is done, this You Tube clip is pretty good.  Life is too short for instant coffee!

**New Page** The Top 5

Check out the new page where from time to time I will rank my Top 5 latte locations.

Lars – Hyde Park, SA **Update**

116a King William Road, Hyde Park SA 5061

This was one of the very first reviews I conducted way back in May 2009, and after making a return visit this morning, I decided that it needed an update – because things have changed. The food (breakfast – as this is all I have tried there), coffee and service are all still excellent – but the thing I noticed before I had even walking inside was that this little logo was plastered all over the place. You see, four months ago Lars went Fairtrade – and not just providing a Fairtrade option, but serving nothing but Fairtrade Organic Coffee – and proudly displaying the logo and pretty much ever flat coffee related surface.

Latte Quality – Excellent – after yesterday, this coffee was a Godsend.

Cost – $3 for a regular sized coffee

Coffee Supplier – Diamond Coffee

Fair Trade – Yes, and proud of it!

Venue Suitable for:

  • Quiet Chat – Yes – the tables are small, and there is enough ambient noise to allow for privacy.
  • Deep and Meaningful – A possibility – depends on your ability to maintain attention and focus.  There are flat screen TVs inside, music in the background and the traffic of King William Road can all be distracting.  A great place for a breakfast meeting with colleagues.
  • Study and Reflection – Not really that sort of venue.  Is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner – but not really the place to spread out your books, laptop and do some serious study.

Lars “Great Food & Wine” – Hyde Park, SA

116a King William Road, Hyde Park SA 5061

This is regular breakfast venue for a colleague and I, and for one of the best tasting and reasonably priced cooked breakfasts in Adelaide, you really can’t go past Lars.  But that is not the purpose of this Blog, now is it?  Perhaps that could be a ‘Boston Legal’ type spin-off??

Latte Quality – Good – there wasn’t any foam to speak of – which is a pity, as I recall my first latte here was “Lattastic”

Cost – really good – $3 for a regular sized coffee (across the board) – and as the new sign said, $2 regular sized coffees on Monday & Tuesday

Coffee SupplierDiamond Coffee

Fair Trade – Yes

Venue Suitable for:

  • Quiet Chat – Yes – the tables are small, and there is enough ambient noise to allow for privacy.
  • Deep and Meaningful – A possibility – depends on your ability to maintain attention and focus.  There are flat screen TVs inside, music in the background and the traffic of King William Road can all be distracting.
  • Study and Reflection – Not really that sort of venue.  Is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner – but not really the place to spread out your books, laptop and do some serious study.
%d bloggers like this: