Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Don't You Wish Your Mug Was Hot Like Mine? The "Mug Mitten" from Coffee-mate (R)

It's what all the best-dressed mugs are wearing this winter.  The "mug mitten."  And your girl was lucky enough to be "gifted" one from Coffee-mate (R).

Mine is the "pumpkin spice" design (a particular favorite).

It's important to accessorize and that includes your mugs.  What are the holidays without a little "bling?"

Hand-crafted by a renowned mug mitten designer.

The perfect way to get your mug warm and the conversation hot.

(And no matter how much I love gourmet coffee,  Coffee-mate will always have a place in my heart)

Friday, December 26, 2014

The Day After - Winding Down with DAVIDs Tea

Nothing like the frenzy of Christmas to get the adrenaline flowing.  What happens when you want to "take it down a notch?"

Tea happens.

Santa, in the form of one of my favorite bosses, brought me the gift of DAVIDs Tea.  And because he knows just how fast my coffee keeps me going, he bought me a box of caffeine-free "All Day and All Night."

He even gave me this adorable mug steeper to go with.

I plan to spend the day winding down, watching mindless television, munching on cookies and drinking tea.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Really Great Coffee for a Really Good Cause - Fonté 2014 Holiday Blend - "22" is a very good year!

18.00 for a 12 ounce bag.  All profits benefit the Pike Market Child Care and Preschool

"Each year the winter holiday season presents us an opportunity to reflect on the events of the past year at the same time we cherish the traditions we’ve known for many years. In recognition of this it’s been our practice at Fonte to create an annual Holiday Blend, something special that evokes the quality of the season, and a part of that tradition is that the blend be unique each year. It’s now our pleasure to offer our 22nd version of Fonte Holiday Blend.
This year we’ve taken time to focus on the different processes that prepare coffee for export after harvest. The specifics of removing the coffee fruit from the seed (bean), of washing, drying and resting coffee before shipment and subsequent roasting have traditionally varied from region to region, but have for the most part remained consistent within these regions for generations. The past few years have seen an experimental spirit come forward in several disparate regions, and for the first time we have had the chance to taste Central American coffees prepared using traditional Ethiopian methods, Brazils processed like Guatemalas and Indonesians prepared like East Africans. This has remarkably extended the flavor profiles we might expect from a given producer, and over the course of 2014 we have set aside a few of the exciting results from new interpretations of some of our favorite coffees.
We’ve laid the foundation for this year’s Holiday Blend with a honey process Sumatra, broadly sweet and thick as you might expect but with surprisingly vivid notes of candied fruit unheard of in conventional Sumatras. We’ve built on that with a semi-washed El Salvador, easily one of our 2014 favorites, that lends a burnished citric brightness to the blend as well as reinforcing the lively fruit presence with notes of mango and apple. We’ve completed the experience with a fully washed Sulawesi, adding a long chocolate finish unusually clean for an Indonesian coffee.
We hope you enjoy this year’s Holiday Blend, both in special gatherings of friends and family as well as for that well deserved self-indulgence, and we wish you all the best this Holiday Season."  (From Fonté Coffee)
Bag Size:
12 ounces
Tasting Notes: 
Heavy bodied with notes of candied fruit, bright apple and mango, long clean chocolate finish

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Last Minute Gift Idea - Weaver's Ethiopia Natural Organic Coffee

Weaver's Ethiopia Natural Organic
Who doesn't like receiving coffee for the holidays?  And this isn't just any coffee.  It's Weaver's, which means it's hand-crafted, artisan coffee, roasted under the direction and none other than Master Roaster John Weaver himself for Wild Card Roasters in San Rafael.

Deep, dark and fruity-chocolatey.

You don't need to drive anywhere to get it or gift it, order online here!

**Weaver's beautiful new café is now Open in  San Francisco at 2301 Market Street.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Mama's Got A Brand New Mug

In keeping with my tradition of adding to my coffee collectibles each holiday season, this year, I selected a mug from the Starbucks "Dot" Collection.  Totally appropriate for someone named Dot, don't you think?

I couldn't decide which design I wanted from this fun new series, actually I wanted them all, but I picked this plaid ceramic number because it reminds me of my first lunch box which was metal and plaid and would be worth a fortune if I still had it.

Love the Siren logo in the middle.  Classic yet contemporary.

There were only two left at the store.  Yep, I bought them both.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

My Favorite Holiday Things (Continued) - 2012 Partridge on a Red Mug

As I continue to pull down and bring out my favorite holiday coffee collectibles, I have now started drinking from one of my favorite holiday mugs.  The Starbucks 2012 Partridge Mug.

There's no law that says I can't drink from it all year, but it just doesn't feel quite right.  Although, I'm considering a new tradition of drinking from holiday-ware in the month of July.  "Christmas in July," get it?

This is a very well-made mug, perfect size for a Saturday-sized cup of coffee, easy to hold and has strong, bright colors.

In fact, I bought three at the time.  One for each member of the household.  You may ask why not four (and I do prefer even numbers), but that just didn't seem right to me.  There has to be some things that are family traditions.  Like drinking from your red partridge mug during Christmas-time.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Meet "Mr. Starbucks Bearista 2005"

Starbucks Christmas Bearista 2005

What's In Your Christmas Coffee-Themed Collection?

Every year, around this time, because I'm always later than I plan to be with decorating, I pull out my coffee-themed Christmas decorations.

And, while this Starbucks 2005 Bear-ista isn't my oldest Christmas-Coffee Collectible, he's certainly one of my favorites.

That's why I take such good care of him all year.  He lives in the closet (don't worry, he's not afraid of the dark) where he hibernates for about 10 months out of the year.  

He's still a baby-bear to me.  Not quite ten years old. and he still has his tags!  No one is allowed to play with him - except for me.  We have a special bond and you may have guessed that he's an amazing listener.

I will be sharing more of my "collection" with you this season and I hope you won't mind.

I'm sure you can see why "Mr. Bearista" is so "bear-y" special to me!

Saturday, December 6, 2014

The Accidental Tourist - Community Coffee French Roast

Don't you hate it when you order something online and then you get it and it's not what you ordered?  

Well, that happened to me this week when I received my order from Community Coffee.  Except, I don't hate it.  I love it.  

I ordered one coffee and due to the "Black Friday" surge, I ended up with a different coffee.  Which is Il n'y a pas de quoi when you're ordering from Community Coffee because they provide excellent customer service and southern hospitality.

I wanted a single serve flavored coffee and wound up with a bag of whole bean French Roast.  When I called to tell them I received the wrong order, the nice lady told me that she'd get my order corrected and shipped pronto and to keep the bag of French Roast compliments of Community.

I'd forgotten just how much I love their French Roast.  Actually, it's almost as good as their chicory.  Okay, honestly, I think I like the French Roast better.

Smoky, dark, dark, dark, strong, robust and satisfying.  And, of course, I always prefer to grind my own beans.

Saturday morning just got even better.  Now, if I only had a beignet to "go with."

Friday, December 5, 2014

Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf - My New Obsession

Okay, here's my "usual" morning routine.  

I wake up in the morning and brew/pour-over/press/k-cup my first cup of coffee for the day.  

Then, once I get to work in the city, if I don't drink the coffee that the office provides (which, by the way, is a very nice selection of top coffees, however, for whatever reason, they never taste very good when brewed in the one cup grind and brew, large, industrial sized, very expensive automatic coffee maker), I go downstairs to the major coffee chain that shall remain anonymous (but their home office is Seattle).  

Rewind to the last couple of weeks when I started getting my mid-morning fix at Coffee Bean.

I've always liked Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, but there aren't very many locations in my area.  I've been visiting my daughter a lot lately and her favorite coffee bar is Coffee Bean.  She let me in on a little "secret."  Apparently they have like amazing ICE.  I never get the cold drink offerings there so I can't say for a fact.

Getting to the point.  They offer like three varieties of coffee a day.  I opt for the dark roast.  

Anyway, I am so digging it.  It's a totally different vibe.  The baristas move at a slower pace, the counter is almost always crowded and there's hardly any room to pay, but somehow it works!

Not sure how long this obsession will last, but for now I'm enjoying the buzz.  

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Holiday Blend Coffee Countdown - What better place to start than with Weaver's?

Where did the year go?  It's already time for the 2014 Holiday blend coffee list.

First up, "Weaver's Holiday Blend."  

Like everything from Wild Card Roasters, Weaver's hits a home run with their 2014 roast.

The pride that goes into this hand-crafted artisan coffee is evident from the very moment you open the bag and take a whiff of the deep, earthy tones and notice the freshness of the bean.  Did I mention that I am obsessed with the "easy open" bag with  resealable tape that actually allows you to reseal it?

Perfect for a rainy Sunday morning like this.  This special offering won't last, so make sure you get a couple of bags for yourself and also the coffee lover on your holiday list.

100% Certified Organic and Fair Trade Certified (TM).

Chocolate finish caps off this deep, dark taste.

16.95 for a one pound bag.