“How to Roast” Hosted by Edible Brooklyn & Brooklyn Brewery

It has been one month since our demonstration on how to roast coffee at home has happened.  Here’s a recap:

Since we have a good amount of experience roasting on a production roaster on a daily basis, we wanted to find the best approach to excite people into trying to do some roasting at home with tools that would be readily available.  Coffee is fun & brings people together and on that Wednesday night the people came out in droves.  The room was packed with eager self-proclaimed “coffee geeks” hungry to get started on a new adventure.  In preparation we roasted on an 8 inch heavy frying pan, 4 inch sauce pan, & and I-Roast home roaster.  These items had a price tag ranging from a few dollars to over $200.  We wanted to stress the point that anyone with an interest, time, and patience be creative in their kitchen

We covered:

Price of home equipment, how to source some green coffee (Sweet Maria’s is a great one), and the basic principals of roasting. Since time and temperature, and where these two meet on a profile or x y grid, are critical in getting coffee to a desired quality that is reflected in the cup, we chose to use the I-Roast2 in our demonstration.  The iRoast2, a fluid bed or “air” roaster gives the pilot some controls in terms of setting temperatures at certain times. It also progressed in a respectable amount of time: in the 15-minute range, which also mirrors the length of a typical production roast.

What we did:

We took our Pedra Roxa, Brazil coffee through a 15-minute roast, trying to best mirror our production roast. We mapped out the coffee progression by capturing the coffee from the production roaster at 1.5-minute intervals. What it revealed is the fast progression towards the end, where the beans begin to exotherm and really start to develop quickly. Watching carefully later in the roast is paramount to attaining the kind of notes you want to bring out in the given. That is where real changes happen and where you can go from grassy, vegetal, wheat notes to the more desired sweet notes such as baker’s chocolate and white peach.

Roast Progression

At the end of the presentation, eager attendees could have green coffee to continue their roasting education at home through experimentation.  We supplied 50 excited people with ½ pound of our Pedra Roxa, Brazil green coffee as well as a cold brewed and bottled version for everyone to take home.  We have been hearing back from attendees on their progress with home roasting. It’s very encouraging to see so many people passionate about the process to make great coffee, even if there is a lot of trial and error at the beginning.  During the session we really focused on how much fun someone would have doing this at home.  We guaranteed that they would forever love the first cup of coffee they ever made from beans they roasted themselves.  To date, the feedback we have received confirms our guarantee.  Everyone loves his or her roast best!!!

Thanks to Edible Brooklyn and Brooklyn Brewery for putting together such a great event!

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Gorilla Warfare is Back!

It’s back for another annual attack — the Sixpoint coffee porter, made with our coffee. Gorilla Warfare can be found on draft in bars and restaurants all over right now.

This beer was introduced in 2007, and it’s made a few rounds in the falls and winters since. Like its namesake beast, it has a rather fierce, robust coffee flavor and deep color that’s topped with a creamy foam, not unlike that of a cappuccino. It’s become a seasonal favorite among fans as well as the Sixpoint staff, since it smells like a coffee house for a day when it’s brewed.

So it was time to resurrect the beast. This new batch of Gorilla Warfare brewed in Red Hook is made with Fairview Estate, Kenya

The resulting beer has a mellow, wake-up-and-smell-the-coffee aroma and bold flavor that’s surprisingly less sweet for a porter. ABV of 7%. Get a pint before this batch is all spent for the season!

[caption id="attachment_239" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Sixpoint Brewers preparing to add the coffee"][/caption]

Brewer's notes on the Gorilla Warfare:

Gorilla Warfare

Baltic Porter with Gorilla Coffee

7.2% ABV, 28 IBU

Color- Nearly black with an almond colored head.

Aroma- Intense coffee with malty sweetness underneath.  Roasted malts blend with roasted coffee perfectly

Flavor- Coffee permeates through layers of dark, dark chocolate and black bread, giving way to a rich toffee sweetness with more coffee to finish.


Canadian pale malt

German Munich and crystal malts

English crystal and roasted malts

Belgian special b malt

American Horizon, Northern Brewer, and Warrior hops

Gorilla Coffee roasted Fairview Estate from Kenya


Where can you find it? Try Beer Menus to see who's got it flowing.

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Lola, 2003-2011

Lola. We miss you already. You were a most loyal customer from your first days. We grew up together. We enjoyed lattes, muffin crumbs, snowy benches and chill afternoons together. Here's a tribute to you and all your wonderfulness.

A letter from Lola's family:

"Dear All,

On Tuesday night, we said a final goodbye to our big beautiful Lola.  We miss her terribly.

For eight years, her enormous benign presence drew friends and admirers, literally stopped traffic and, for us, came to define a beloved block, a neighborhood and an era in our lives.  Though Jewish tradition calls for prompt mourning, we’ve decided – in tribute to her lumbering pace – to sit Shiva on Sunday, September 18, 3-6 PM (the time of day she typically awoke for a latte at Gorilla Coffee).  Below, a brief written tribute. Click here for a short LOLA SLIDESHOW

In the annals of dog-hood, Lola was supremely relaxed.  She rarely barked, or even ran. What she did best of all was sit.  And she always opted for the middle of anywhere.  She sat at the bank, on the sidewalk, in the park, in any doorway, in the street, with total disregard for traffic.  At 130 lbs, she was uniquely unmovable.  She ignored steak, batted away physical coercion.  Around the neighborhood, she came to be known as the dog that refused to move.

Some say Newfies are the "hippies” of the dog world.  Lola had perfected an Abbie-Hoffman style of civil disobedience.  Faced with any duress, she'd shift from sit to slouch, to lying down, to deep collapse and finally, coma.  Passersby would ask, “Is she okay?  Can I help?”  For years, our answer was:  “She’s fine, thanks.  She does this all the time.”

For eight years, we worked on the word “Come.”  We told her, "Walking is the new sitting," or,  "Let's pretend you're alive."  Only the prospect of abandonment made a dent.  We would say a ritual “bye-bye,” then walk away, and disappear conspicuously.  She’d rise and follow -- ten to fifteen minutes later (as we watched and waited from around a corner).  The serene and seemingly abandoned Newfoundland became a fixture on Park Slope's streets.

Most often, you could find her slumbering at her lifeguard post on the stoop at 45 Park Place, keeping a half-opened eye on the street.  She was, after all, a working dog, slated for water rescue.  Only deep into her tenure did we realize that we did all the work.

Then in late July, after two difficult knee surgeries, came the diagnosis of bone cancer.

The vet told us we’d need to put her down once her lifestyle changed, once she’d stopped running, leaping, playing football.  We explained, she’d actually been asleep for the last three years.  It was hard to tell the difference between Lola sick and Lola well.  But soon enough, she couldn’t walk, even if she’d wanted to.  We carried her in and out over the last several months – most extraordinarily up and down the steps of a three-story walk-up apartment.  It was graciously loaned by a friend after we’d moved out of our old house, but were awaiting a move-in to our new house under construction.

All the residents of that no-dog apartment building a few doors up from our old house granted Lola a waiver because, well, she was Lola.  On her last weekend, we took her upstate and watched, breath held, as she hobbled to a nearby pond and stood in the water, weightless for a moment and almost home, it seemed.

We hope you'll join us in her favorite activity, sitting!  Again, Shiva will be Sunday, September 18, 3-6, on our new stoop at 623 11th St. (between 8th and Prospect Park West) for coffee, dog biscuits and a remembrance.  An e-mail reminder will follow.


Lola's Lucky People (Ken, Katherine, Amelia and Isobel)"

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