Crema Cycles

3 06 2010

This was sent in by our friends in Europe. If you have, or are willing to, spend over $3k on a bike, chances are you have heard of Independent Fabrications, the famed custom bike builder. Even if you already have a nice bike or have just recently bought one (like I have), IF bikes are still one of those bikes you will always uncontrollably drool over, in a Pavlovian sort of way.

Wet dreams at Crema Cycles

So it was with great out of saddle excitement to see Creme Cycles, the dealer for IF bikes in Germany, in a video featuring the La Marzocco GS/3 (at 1:45):

“We are very serious about our coffee… We work really hard to come up with a blend that has the right taste, the right balance, the right body. It’s the same thing with building a custom frame. You just gotta come up with the right combination that comes over into the art, the passion, and the culture of it.”

Crema Cycles' Espresso Bar

I think I want my Strada to come with Hi-Mod carbon or titanium panels.

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On a separate note, sorry about lack of new posts lately. We’ve been very busy with planning of the La Marzocco Out of the Box NYC in the past month. New details will be posted soon, I promise.  For the fixeratis in NYC, be advised that there will be the first ever bike powered pressure profiling espresso machine! That being said, I’m sure Mr. Bike Snob NYC will soon be on my case about the superfluous cycle componentry other than what’s available on a Surly, just as how he was mindful of NYC coffee.





LM Out of the Box Coming to NYC

15 04 2010

UPDATED INFO ON NEWEST POST HERE





Tuesday Night – Barista Round Table – Be There

1 02 2010

Visions Espresso‘s Coffee Enhancement Lounge will be hosting round 3 of Barista Round Table, an interactive and highly involved forum for coffee professionals – managers, baristas, roasters, techs, et al. Wonderfully hosted by Sarah Dooley and Jared Mockli, the BRT is a means for all to come together, unencumbered, and simply geek out on all things coffee.

While some may argue that Seattle’s coffee scene has been lagging behind other progressive specialty coffee markets such as SF, NYC, and Portland, it does not necessarily represent all of us here in Seattle. Granted, there are indeed plenty of people (consumers and professionals alike) ok with the status quo of dark(er) roasted coffees or mysterious blends and defend tirelessly of Seattle’s “coffee city” repute. At the same time, however, there are also many of us that are actively working to further our understanding and appreciation of specialty coffee, collaborating with each other as well as many other leading establishments elsewhere. BRT is such a place where these people come together.

Perhaps it is a confluence of the economy, bad public policy, stagnant demand, a dash of complacency, and Seattle’s passive aggressive culture that have discouraged many progressive Third Wave cafes from opening up. Nonetheless, there are a handful of relatively new (within the past 1-2 years or so) and excellent places that are worthy of at least a visit by the most discerning amongst us.

  • Urban Coffee Lounge – Baristas Andrew and Laila came in 2nd and 3rd at 2010 NWRBC. Features Stumptown coffee prepared with care and precision.
  • Zoka Kirkland – Their new cafe is a daring departure, with two machines (one dedicated to single origin espressos) in a sexy urban setting.
  • Tougo Coffee – Serves Stumptown and Ritual (only place in Seattle!).
  • Dubsea Coffee – New cafe serving Stumptown coffee, bringing specialty coffee to an area of town (White Center) not previously accustomed to specialty coffee.
  • Stumptown Seattle – Always pushing the quality above all else, of course.
  • Makeda Coffee – Little shop in a sleepy neighborhood of Phinney Ridge, serving Seven Roasters coffee

This is not a comprehensive list of course (let’s not forget Aster, Trabant, and many more but keeping it short here to get to the point). Perhaps it is due to Seattle’s inherent culture of understatedness and avoidance of attracting attention to oneself that most of these establishments are not very well known (Zoka and Stumptown notwithstanding).

The point is, the BRT is a manifestation of the kind of progressive efforts a dedicated group of us in Seattle are actively pursuing. If you’re in town, this is your chance to geek out.





Soup’d Up Mistral

7 01 2010

That’s no minestrone. It’s one of two custom La Marzocco Mistrals destined for Stumptown Portland. Under the hood specs:

  • Mechanical Paddle – for variable pressure soft preinfusion
  • Individual boilers
  • Individual pumps
  • Independent PID controllers
  • Preheater – controlled preheating of incoming water

FYI, all La Marzocco machines can be customized via LM Works.





Cuvee Goes On TV

4 01 2010

Cuvee Coffee‘s Mike McKim and Clancy Rose (2009 South Central Barista Champion) make their TV debut on Austin’s KXAN NBC. Showing how to make coffee with their GS/3.

Next stop – Bollywood =)





Heart <3 Wood Mistral

23 12 2009

This is SOOOOO seXy! So much so that it puts the “X” in sexy.

Heart Roasters fancies tasty coffees, understated cool decor, and sexy espresso machines. To fulfill their hearts, they have custom fabricated wood side panels and group caps on their La Marzocco Mistral. See below for drool inducing wood+metal goodness.

Heart's custom Mistral

Heart's wood Mistral

Oh yeah, they roast coffee, too. Did I mention the man behind Heart is “the” Wille Yli-Luoma?

Roasting hearts.

A badass bar featuring a custom Mistral and a custom painted Synesso.





Ritual’s New Digs

22 12 2009

Sweet beans of Esmeralda! Ritual‘s new roastery looks tight! Located in downtown SF, just south of Market St, it forms a nice midpoint in the downtown coffee corridor that includes Blue Bottle, Sightglass, and now Ritual.

Here are a few pictures from their Open House:

Eileen, the one who puts the ritual in Ritual.

Big open space at the new roastery. It's for roasting and operations use for now but there may be a retail cafe in the future.

Eileen and her GB/5.