Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Blue Mountain Coffee - Because, if not now, when?



I called Catahoula Coffee this morning to ask if they had any more of Tim's special limited Jamaican Blue Mountain offering. The clerk said, "We have a pound and a half left." I said, "Hey, please hold a half-pound for me - I'm on my way!" While 40.00 per pound certainly isn't cheap for coffee, considering the quality of these beans and the rarity of the offering - it's too good to pass up.

And after brewing up a pot and enjoying the "one-of-a-kind" flavor, I'd say it was 20.00 well-spent. After all, it's not going to kill me to eat a couple more days of Christmas leftovers and what's more important food or coffee?

I think you know the answer.

Monday, December 27, 2010

My Favorite Coffee Christmas Gifts





I hope everyone had a good holiday - whichever holiday it is that you celebrate. I had a great time with family and friends. Tons of food and laughter, and of course, coffee.

I thought I would share my two favorite coffee gifts with you this year.

The first one I opened was from my niece who came home from Miami for Christmas. She is such a "crafty" devil. She made me this uber-cute wall hanging which reads "Dorothy, The Queen of Coffee." The detail is amazing, right down to the coffee cup stamps that she used for the background. I just have to find the perfect spot to hang it for maximum exposure! Love it.

The next coffee gift came from my nephew and niece-in-law (that's a word, right?) which is a Bodum Santos Vacuum Stovetop Coffee Maker. Now, chemistry was never my best subject so I'll admit I'm a little intimidated by it. However, with a little help from "youtube" I should be able to figure it out. Can't wait to let you know how it works, so stayed tuned for a review.

I've also enjoyed some amazing coffees this holiday season which I'm still savoring. I'm working on a review of a Jamaica Blue Mountain that is a vacation in a cup. More about that later.

So, bye for now and here's to good coffee!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Coffee and Books. . .Absolutely NO Dirty Looks




My book club held its holiday meeting the other night and had our annual "Kris Kringle" swap. And guess what your girl won? Yup, the cutest mug on the planet. This adorable and classy "Library Books" mug is by Lenox (Kate Spade Design). Does it get any more upscale than this? And everybody knows I (heart) coffee and books! And what girl in her right mind doesn't love Kate Spade? Kate Spade, Lenox, Coffee. . .oh, baby. This is SO me.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Goes With Coffee. . .Confections from "The Feel Good Gourmet"



Flowers you can eat? From "The Feel Good Gourmet." Amber's creations can be ordered online and shipped anywhere!


Aren't these poinsettas the cutest things ever? There's so much more at:

www.thefeelgoodgourmet.com

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Oh, "K" - Let's Go! Just In Time for the Holidays



Of all the coffee "apparati" I own, the one thing I don't have is a Keurig brewer. I've used one before and even had the pleasure of attending the "K-Cup" Festival in San Francisco last month, but I've never actually had one in my own home. I was thrilled when my daughter came home from college for Christmas break with her "Personal Keurig Platinum Brewer" in tow. She laid out a few ground rules. "One - don't break it. Two - don't use it if you don't know what you're doing and Three - Don't get used to it because it's going back to school with me!"

The most thrilling part of the whole concept is that it comes in 200 different varieties! Since my daughter uses it mainly for hot chocolate and flavored coffees, the first thing I did was go out and get a box of Green Mountain "Nantucket Blend" K-Cups. Delicious cup of coffee. Bold. Just the way I like it.

Can't wait to try the hot chocolate and teas. Stay tuned for more K-cup reviews.

www.keurig.com

www.greenmountaincoffee.com

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Sleigh Bells Ring, Are You Listening?




Do you hear what I hear? It's the sound of the coffee dripping down into the carafe. What's that smell? It's gourmet coffee at its finest.

I was first introduced to "Seattle's Best" Coffee in 1993 in -you guessed it - Seattle. I liked it so much that I would order over the phone from the company and have it shipped to my house. Today, I can have it any time I want. Seattle's Best is in a league all its own.

This morning I'm enjoying a cup of "Sleigh Bell Blend." Not too dark. Not too light. Just right for this time of year. Actually, I could drink this particular roast all year 'round. Unfortunately, it's a limited roast so after it's gone, there will be no more and you'll have to wait until next year. If I were you, I'd get it now because who wants to take a chance of having to be good all year to enjoy Seattle's Best Sleigh Bell Blend? Because life is short and you should drink more coffee.

www.seattlesbest.com

Sunday, December 12, 2010

There's No Place Like Home for the Holidays! Bigelow Holiday Teas



I recently learned that Bigelow has a collection of holiday teas. Who knew? They were kind enough to send me this wonderful assortment to sample and here we go:

Ginger Snappish: Caffeine free taste like - well, it's like a gingersnap in a cup with a hint of lemon. I had a cup after dinner last night. Perfection for digestion.

Pumpkin Spice: My daughter likes this one. She loves pumpkin. (I'm more of a sweet-potato gal). Anyway, she said it's like "pumpkin pie." (Contains Caffeine)

Apple Cider: Caffeine free. Simply delicious. Cinnamon-ney and smells amazing!

And. . .drum roll. . .my personal favorite,

Eggnogg'n: This one really surprised me because I don't like eggnog! But the combination of black and green tea gives you a wonderful lift and the cinnamon notes balance out the flavor. Really doesn't taste like eggnog at all to me. This will be my new mid-morning "snack."

20 tea bags per box. Each bag is individually wrapped. This four pack gift set is available online at:*

www.bigelowtea.com

*Retail price $12.95

Friday, December 10, 2010

Holiday Brew Review - "Reindeer Blend" by Caribou Coffee



I like to think like a lady and drink like a man! Yeah, baby. This "Reindeer Blend" from Caribou is one of my favorites from the Minnesota roaster.

It's rich and smooth with a fruity undertone and no after-taste. Perfect way to start my motor on a cold Friday morning.

I guess I'll share it with my co-workers, although I'm thinking that I should keep it all for myself. But, it is better to give than to receive - except when it comes to Reindeer Blend. This is good stuff.

www.cariboucoffee.com

(This is a limited offering, so get it now before it's gone!)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Mocha-Choca-La-Ta-Ya-Ya



Even if you don't believe in Santa, you can still enjoy the season. My daughter loves chocolate and peppermint (together). And since she's a "newbie" coffee drinker (not a pro, like her Mama), I picked up this Peppermint Mocha Coffee-Mate(R) in the grocery store. It will make her coffee go down just a little "sweeter."

I found it at my local Lucky Supermarket for around 4.00 for a 15 ounce container.

There are so many different flavors of Coffee-Mate these days. See for yourself at:

www.coffee-mate.com

Monday, December 6, 2010

Do You Believe In Magic?




You will, after using the Capresso H20 Pro Cordless Water Kettle. This kettle is not just another pretty face. It's functional, efficient, easy to use, safe and will change your life. Honestly. It has changed mine. It's forced me to "dial back the caffeine." Instead of having one more cup of coffee at night, I tend to opt for a caffeine-free cup of tea instead.

Remarkably convenient. Just fill it up with water. Place it on the element. Press the button. By the time you decide which cup to use, which flavor of tea or coffee (perfect for pour over methods), the water is ready! It's fast and reliable.

If you want to make magic for someone this holiday season, this is the ticket.

The Capresso H20 Pro Programmable Cordless Water Kettle with Variable Temperature Control. Available at select retailers or online at:

www.capresso.com

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

I'm In A New Orleans State of Mind



James Lee Burke is one of the most descriptive writers alive. He's also one of the best writers in the world and one of my all-time favorites. His latest "Dave Robicheaux Novel," "The Glass Rainbow," (Simon & Schuster) will take you deep into the heart of Louisiana. Honestly, you will feel like you're there. That's why this morning, I closed my book and went into the kitchen to brew up a pot of my favorite Louisiana coffee, Community Coffee Dark Roast. It's rich and flavorful, just like a James Lee Burke novel.

This duo would make a nice "gift pack" for the coffee and book lover on your holiday list.

www.communitycoffee.com

www.jamesleeburke.com