Blog Archives

New Page – The Locations

If you are at all like me and often can’t be bothered scrolling through the archives of a blog – just on the off chance that there may be something interesting there – which would of course make us completely useless as side kicks or assistants to the Indiana Jones type adventurers….I think I have veered slightly of course there, my apologies.

I have created a new page for those who like to see where I have been, without having to go on a quest to do so.  Click on ‘The Locations’ page above to be taken to a list of the 85 Coffee places that have been reviewed since May 2009.  In truth I was a bit disappointed to find that I had only reviewed 85, and not the magical 100 or more – especially considering that there are more than 150 posts on this blog – which just goes to show how much rubbish I write when not drinking enough coffee – case in point – the length of this entry which was just designed to highlight the new page, but has now degenerated into the ramblings of a sleep deprived 30 something who is hesitant to check the live score update on the NBL website, so as not to cause the 36er’s to loose – because my checking would cause this – it has nothing to do with the fact that….oh, never mind.

New pageThe Locations – lists all the coffee places by region – hope it is helpful – not completely unlike this entry….

Tweeting Coffee

Will Tweet for Coffee!

The brains (or lack thereof) behind Make Coffee Not War is now on Twitter.  To follow the one who follows, click on the Twitter Icon in the Header.

Despite declaring to all who would listen that I would never become a Twit, I have bowed to peer pressure and in part due to the liminality of reason that comes with insomnia and an Internet connection I have joined the masses.  Who know where the madness will end?  However, I can categorically say – that “I will never purchase an iPad.”

May all your coffee be good coffee.

McCoffee is the best? Really???

This from today’s Herald Sun via the Adelaide Advertiser….

A STORM is brewing in the nation’s coffee chains after McDonald’s top-scored in a battle of the baristas.

The fast food giant better known for fries and burgers beat specialty rivals to snatch best coffee house honours in a consumer survey.  McCafe trumped Gloria Jean’s, Hudsons, Muffin Break and The Coffee Club, according to the Canstar Blue poll.  The tick comes just three months after McDonald’s apologised for the sorry state of its coffee and promised to improve.  McCafe got top marks for overall satisfaction and price, tied with Michel’s on service, and came equal first with Perth-based Dome for taste.  The survey revealed 10 per cent of Australians find coffee withdrawal symptoms worse than going without cigarettes, and have tried unsuccessfully to give up their caffeine habit.  To read more, including some interesting comments click HERE

A couple of things on this article:

  1. I would hardly call any of those ‘speciality rivals’ a specialty coffee places – they are mass producing coffee franchises – who, as I am sure you have all experienced do not produce consistently great coffee – but perhaps we could call them passable. It is generic coffee.  Specialty coffee places are your smaller concerns who purchase their beans from origin – perhaps even attend the cup of excellence – roast locally and with consciousness and dedicated baristas serve you a coffee that they long for you to enjoy – see Coffee By The Beans or The Coffee Barun or the Coffee Branch.
  2. Really??  You expect us to believe that this was a genuine survey and not an attempt by the McDonalds Corporation to move past their national apology?

If there are no further posts on this blog, then perhaps I was right with point 2?  Have a great coffee and a great day!!

 

The Organic Market and Café – Stirling, SA

5 Druids Avenue, Stirling, SA, 5251

This is a follow up review to one of the very first I completed back in June 2009, as I had the opportunity and the desire to visit The Organic Market and Cafe on August 5th, because they were one of only four cafes in South Australia to signup to the CaféSmart promotion.

The Organic Market and Café is still a very comfortable, very trendy little Cafe – attached to an Organic Market nestled in a side street, off the main tree lined street of the picturesque and pricey, Stirling.  Parking is still a problem, but that is typical of Stirling at most times of the year. A good thing to do is park up near the steam engine playground, and enjoy the short walk to the Café.

As you do the rounds of the food/coffee review websites, this place seems to get many comments which align with my experience – in that, customer service is not a priority.  After ordering my coffee, I was ignored – do I stand and wait? do I sit down and wait ? – they didn’t ask for a name, so I assumed to should hang around close to the front – because we are all crammed in tight, I was required to move to my left by an assertively sighing waitress whose flow towards the counter was interrupted by annoying customers just wanting to be served. Seriously folks – if you want to see how good customer service is done – visit The Two Bees in Victor Harbor, The Coffee Barun in Sefton Park, or La Terre in Willunga….

Latte Quality – Good – good temperature, good flavour and $1 of my cost went to a good cause.

Cost – $3.50 for a regular (pretty small) take away coffee – in one of the BIO Cups (fully compostable)

Coffee Supplier – Even after two years they still do not promote whose coffee they sell – so, while waiting I ask the barista who then dived under the table and came up with a bag of Vittoria Nero Blend – which is their standard coffee (not organic in any way, shape or form – it is standard ‘food service blend’ by Vittoria – however, they also have an organic bean which you must ask for – however this doesn’t happen very often I was told, and she didn’t know where the beans came from – although the bag and the hand writing on it look suspiciously like it came from ‘The Coffee Barun….

Fair Trade – No – Vittoria do not do a Fairtrade blend, although you can purchase a Rainforest Alliance Ground Coffee from supermarkets (although why, know one knows….)

Customer Service –   – acknowledged my presence and value as a carbon based entity – but not much more;

Special Notes – Their standard coffee is NOT organic – which seems to fly in the face of their name, and beliefs from their website – when you order a coffee, make sure you explicitly ask for their organic blend coffee – however, it may cost you a few cents more (not sure, but I do wonder….)

Venue Suitable for:

  • Quiet Chat – No – a very busy place, with people coming and going regularly.
  • Deep and Meaningful – probably a good place for it – enough background noise to allow for safety in conversation topic, but quiet enough so you don’t have to keep repeating yourself.
  • Study and Reflection – being a really busy place, and with there sometimes being a wait on tables – it is probably not the best place for that.

No.58 Cellar Door & Gallery – Port Elliot, SA

58 Waterport Road, Port Elliot, SA, 5212

Now I may need to offer a foreword to this review because of two factors:

  1. This place has been recommended to me as ‘the best new place for coffee on the coast’ by so many people, which tends to influence a review; and
  2. Until now, every time I have made the effort to head there for a coffee, they have been closed.

On this rainy Monday, as I turned my thoughts towards my next preaching series after my return from paternity leave (my wife and I are expected our second child to be born any minute now – literally), I grabbed a new book that was delivered with first mail of the day and headed out for a coffee or two as I spent the Monday morning recovering from the Sunday before.  So with “Reclaiming the ImaginationThe Exodus as Paradigmatic Narrative for Preaching“under my arm, I ventured down to Port Elliot for stop one.

No.58 appears from a quick glance as you go roaring past on the Port Elliot by-pass as a new shed in paddock of vines – and in reality it is – however it is a funky shed, with a deck set next to a uniquely misshapen old pine tree, an almost mighty red gum and then surrounded by a field of vines.  No.58 is a Cellar Door and Gallery which opened sometime last summer and doubles as a coffee place for those stuck between Middleton and Victor Harbor.  This fully lined shed, is furnished with an eclectic bunch of furniture, ranging from leather lounges to rustic kitchen tables/chairs to wicker furniture with the walls covered by pieces of local art – and – the pièce de résistance – is the roaring nectare fire place.  When I arrived, the only person in earshot was on his way out – and despite protestations to the contrary, seemed reluctant to actually have a customer (I was the only one who was there for the entire hour) who desired a coffee and a place to work – but anyway….

Latte Quality – Good – it was a very strong coffee, and has a slightly burnt taste to it – perhaps over extracted?

Cost – $3.50 – which is spot on the money for a regular latte these days – although the glass was on the smaller side of the scale.

Coffee Supplier – Rio Coffee

Fairtrade – No indication that what I was drinking was Fairtrade – although Rio do do three distinctive Fairtrade Organic Blends.

Special Notes – this had confused me, because it was popular but seemed to never be open – but now we know.  Open in school holidays – 7 days 10am-5pm – and then Friday-Saturday 10am-5pm, and Sunday-Monday 10am-4pm

Venue Suitable for:

  • Quiet Chat, Deep and Meaningful, Study – absolutely. As mentioned above I was the only person there for over an hour – the chairs were comfortable, the fire was lovely – if the coffee had been better I may still have been there now!  There is plenty of space inside, although I suspect that during school holidays and in the finer weather the place would quickly become crowded.

Happy 80th

WordPress just told me to celebrate because this blog has finally reached 80 posts – which means that I have (nearly) reviewed 80 lattes in the nearly three years of blogging. Ahhh, the calories.  If you have a suggestion for a latte to review, please comment below!  Happy drinking!!

The Coffee Barun – Sefton Park, SA

217-219 Main North Rd (cnr Third Ave), Sefton Park,   SA,   5083

It is not very often that a third party café recommendation comes any where near the rap that it was given – you know the drill, “Sae” (well perhaps not that part, cos that is just me) but they say “[insert name here] you have just got to try the ‘so and so café’ it was the best coffee ever – latte bliss in your mouth – friendly staff, great atmosphere – the works!” – and then you go, and the place serves Nescafe Blend 43 (or equivalent) from a dripolator – with powered milk on the side…??? Sound familiar???

Well, now I have had a café recommendation that not only met expectations – but exceeded them so much, you could barely see them in the distance!!  Thanks to Josh [click on the link and check out the new website] – who recommended The Coffee Barun – it was coffee person’s heaven – it was like what all serious coffee places should be like!!  Plenty of tables, comfortable seats, clean floors (see previous detailed review below), friendly knowledgeable staff – and you are literally surrounded by all things coffee.  The only down side that I can see is (1) the location – it is north of the city, hence a long was from me and (2) the location – it was really hard to find and then get into – but if you really like coffee, it is worth it!  Trust Me!

Latte Quality – Excellent – Lattastic – because of my previous commitment to you my reader (you know who you are) not to go overboard, I will need to go back to try them again before I declare that they make Adelaide’s best coffee – but……

Cost – $4.00 – for a large – and it was VERY large – good value for money.  I ordered a large because it was my first cup for the afternoon and I had a 100km trip home ahead of me.

Coffee Supplier – They roast their own – in house – The Coffee Barun

Fair Trade – No mention of Fairtrade in store – but they have both Fairtrade and Rainforest Alliance beans available for purchase via the website.

Venue Suitable for:

  • Quiet Chat, Deep and Meaningful, Study and Reflection – Absolutely – I was there from 2-3pm on a Monday afternoon – and there was the two of us, and two other tables with customers on them.

If it wasn’t for geography, I’d be there every week for sermon prep – I hope it will becomes the new coffee place of the Conference HQ staff as it is just 5 mins walk up the road. They also have a kid friendly indoor play area, and a few tables outside – not sure about parking, I ended up in the Northpark Plaza carpark, across the road and down a bit. I can’t wait to go back or Please, please, please open a store on the South Coast – preferably on my side of the hills….

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