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Tools of the Trade: Part 2

So you want to make the perfect cup of coffee, eh? Last time we talked about how important grinders are in the process - a consistent and proper grind relative to the brew method is just one consideration across a myriad of variables. So what are some other tools to help achieve the perfect cup of coffee? Think of Coffee as a Science Experiment A lot of coffee packaging contain instructions for how to brew a pot of coffee. They usually say something like "add one scoop of coffee for every two cups of water," or something like that. The problem with these ambiguous instructions is that a "scoop" is not a true form of measurement. It's like saying "add a dash...

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Tools of the Trade: Part 1

What is the most important tool to own for brewing a great cup of coffee at home? We thought you'd never ask. If you are just starting your coffee snobbery journey, and are wondering where you should begin investing your hard-earned money for that great cup of Joe, you might be wondering what you should get first. Chemex? French Press? A high-end drip pot? Aeropress? Electric Water Kettle? Grinder? Scale? Air Tight Canisters? WHEW! While any of the above mentioned items are worthy investments over the long haul, we believe the journey begins with the most fundamental item - a quality burr grinder. However, this recommendation comes with two assumptions: you have purchased fresh roasted, whole bean coffee and you...

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Choosing Your Roast

One of the most popular questions we get here at Humble Beginnings is "what is your favorite roast"? While we certainly understand the nature of the question, it is extremely difficult to answer without a very thorough explanation.  In general, coffee can be classified into 3 roast levels: light, medium, and dark. The first thing to understand about these roast levels are the characteristics of each, the expected flavor/ experience associated with each, then pairing that knowledge with your personal palette preference. So lets dive right in... A light roast can be best described as fruity, floral, acidic, and...well...light bodied. People who prefer lighter roasts tend to also enjoy citrus fruits such as orange and grapefruit, but also floral experiences...

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Roast to Order

For some, this may be a new concept. We have spoken with people who know very little about the process of coffee to the point where some even thought the coffee came off the plant in it's roasted form. We aren't here to insult or make fun of the uninformed - just educate.  Roast to order means exactly what it sounds like. The coffee remains in its harvested, "green" form until you order it. THEN it gets roasted. This level of freshness is what many coffee drinkers simply aren't accustomed to. Coffee is actually full of unique flavors in it's freshest form, but because most of the world is used to [insert big name coffee company] from the grocery store...

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Coffee Math - Getting What You Pay For

We get it. Sometimes the price of coffee is the most important factor in a purchase. Why would anyone spend $20+ on a bag of coffee when you can get it for a third of the price elsewhere? Although we know there are many answers to this question, we decided to break it down mathematically to make more sense of it. The first thing to do is establish a common unit of measurement. Some coffee brands use "scoops" or "tablespoons" as a measuring unit, but since those can be subject to slight errors, we prefer to use "grams". It is a precise measurement that can be applied to both coffee and water. Since each person's preference for coffee strength is...

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