Reintroductions

Well, it’s been well over a year since I’ve posted anything in this blog. I still sign posts around the internet with this address… so I thought maybe I should get around to making a post.

As some of you may know, I no longer am working in the coffee industry on a regular basis. My last stint as a barista was this past summer in Calgary where I almost exclusively steamed milk at Phil & Sebastian Coffee at the Calgary Farmers Market. Good times were had at P&S. The staff there have such dedication and passion for coffee. I wouldn’t hesitate to say there are very few places like it in North America, if not the entire world.

Anyways.

I am finishing up my Bachelor of Science degree at the University of British Columbia. I have approximately 2 months left to finish off a few courses and my thesis. Most of my time these days is spent deforming rocks and trying to measure the permeability of the faults I create by deforming them. Yes, it is actually exciting, and yes, now I know all kinds of things about percolation networks and fluid flow through interconnected porosity. How does that have anything to do with coffee? Well, indirectly, percolation theory can help explain the distribution of water through a puck of coffee loaded in your portafilter. I’ve yet to really explore that side of the science of coffee, but it will definitely be something to consider.

Possibly the most interesting development in the past year is that I am now a homebrewer. My roommate Dave and old Pearson friend Alex are partners in this venture and we have proven ourselves to be competent brewmasters. Our best batch so far has been a variant on local microbrewer Storm’s Hurricane IPA. It was a superb example of a west coast IPA, with lots of hops (dry hopped too!), but a pleasant balance that seems to be missing in a lot of commercial examples. Tonight involved the bottling of our newest beer, Paul’s Porter. Named for hockey great Paul Coffey, it’s a strong coffee porter. Once it has been fully bottle conditioned, we are expecting a 6.5% robust porter with a backdrop of  coffee (we used a 6 cup mokha pot of local roaster Ethical Bean’s Ethiopia coffee that Dave happened to have on hand). It’s tasting decent already, and that’s warm and without any carbonation. Looks like a porter too, the beer is black and opaque.

My current coffee situation involves me buying retail coffee for the first time in probably 5 years. My regular roasters are 49th Parallel and Intelligentsia. 49th has proven to be a consistent, excellent roaster. My regular bean from them is their Caffe Artigiano Yergacheffe since the Kerrisdale Artigiano is less than a minute walk from my apartment. It’s always fresh and is a very balanced, quality Yerg best made in my Chemex. When I’m looking for a treat though, I head down to Elysian Coffee at Ash and Broadway where they usually have some tasty offerings from 49th, like today’s Clover of Beloya. For those of you that have not experienced the latest issue of this wonderfully crisp, berry-laden natural Ethiopian coffee, I recommend you visit the folks at Elysian (or 49th in Kits for that matter). The people watching from the bar there is great too.

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3 Responses to “Reintroductions”


  1. 1 david pauls February 17, 2009 at 4:38 pm

    hey peter i have a google alert for “vancouver coffee” and your blog came up minutes ago. enjoyed the beloya at elysian II (broadway/ash) yesterday myself. and longwood cask conditioned ipa at the whip on sunday. i looooove ipa and travel to seattle regularly to get my fix. i had a roomate in university who used to brew and we brewed so much beer we developed a draft system. we would sterilize old pepsi or 7up cannisters that we “found”. our first version consisted of drilling through the top of a bar fridge and insulated in a tower and tap. with an external Co2 cannister voila, we had beer on tap. the second version consisted of a similar system but this time turning up the thermostat up on a meat freezer we bought second hand for a $100 thereby converting it into a refrigeration unit and running multiple lines (and multiple kegs). we had the taps coming through the drywall that separated the main space of our basement suite from the furnace room where we kept the freezer. so much beer. those were good days. if you’ve got any extra yew st. i would love to cycle down to kerrisdale and check it out. i’ve got an over abundance of good african coffee from a roaster in seattle, herkimer that you might be interested in sampling. either way good to check out your blog. we need more good beer and good coffee in this town.

    david

  2. 2 Joe Miller February 22, 2009 at 4:43 am

    Good to see you posting again Pete!

    Later,

    Joe

  3. 3 Elyse March 2, 2009 at 6:38 pm

    You’re back! Yay!


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On tap

49th Parallel El Salvador La Montaña
Excellent coffee for everyday drinking. Well expressed acidity and classic El Salvador profile.

Bulleit Bourbon
By far the best bourbon available in BC for the price. $35 for a bottle gets you the highest rye content bourbon on the market. Lots of spice and typical bourbon corn sweetness. Excellent on its own, but also makes a mean Old Fashioned. Better than Knob Creek in my books and pretty close to Woodford Reserve.

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