Coffee Roundup Fall 2021

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As we move into the fall of 2021 and the weather gets cooler and cooler, there is nothing better than warming up with a great cup of coffee.

We’ve put together another Coffee Review that should help you make some choices that suit your tastes and needs.

Ethiopia Chelbesa

The first on our list was an October purchase of the Ethiopia Chelbesa from JJ Bean Coffee Roasters. I will try to buy at least a couple of coffee’s like this in a year but you always know what you get with Ethiopian coffees in terms of flavour and taste.

This coffee was actually best in a stovetop espresso versus a French Press or drip machine. As JJ Bean describes its flavour profile, they are one of “Peach, aromatic, and tea florals.” I would agree and I find coffees like this are best as cooled and then iced in the fridge for hot weather.

JJ Bean also uses a bean variety here that is called Indigenous Heirloom. A quick internet search and I found that such a variety is one that grows wild and occurs spontaneously. It is often used to refer to Ethiopian coffee varieties. Good to know.

One interesting thing to note is the region the coffee is from which is Yirgacheffe. It must by why I found this coffee familiar to me because I have always search for an Yirgacheffe type blend from different roasters.

Caffe Monte Cafe Tarrazu Costa Rica

Caffe Monte Cafe Tarrazu Costa Rica is a company and a coffee I have never tried before at comes from me visiting Roaster Central at Espressotec.

I first tried Costa Rican coffee in 2006 when I visited the country itself but did not make it to the province of San Jose where this coffee originates.

This is a single-origin coffee with tasting notes of citrus, berries and a medium light roast level.

It’s grown at 1,211 metres above sea level and craft-roasted at 3,800 feet in small batches.

It’s a solid light roast coffee that is easy to drink and works great in a drip coffee machine.

Detour Coffee Roasters Dark

Detour is a new coffee company for us at least and we found this one again through Roaster Central at Espressotec.

Detour says this is not a dark coffee in the traditional sense and I get that from both the taste and aroma. It doesn’t sit heavy on the tongue like something from Strait Coffee Traders like the Skookum Blend and it seems to be a coffee for someone who might like the lighter roast of the Costa Rica Tarrazu we mentioned.

Read a little deeper into this coffee and you find that it has a number of varietal beans grown at various altitudes and from three different countries in Brazil, Colombia, and Guatemala. It seems like a multi region blend but still has the flavour profile from Latin America coffees.

I sense an acidity here and body that isn’t as dark as you think it should be.

Spicy Viennese Coffee

Spicy Viennese Coffee isn’t a particular brew or brand of beans that I bought but rather a recipe for coffee as a way to be prepared.

The recipe was found in a book I have called the Coffee Book which looks to be long out of print.

It uses spices such as cinnamon, cloves and allspice. The spices are added to the coffee which is placed in a pot and heated slowly on the stove.

I always strain it so that I get the cloves out of the coffee but I leave in the cinnamon and allspice. The recipe can also be varied and I top the coffee with a sprinkle of cinnamon and whipped cream.

Business Marketing

Hyperlocal Growth for Small Business

As mentioned in a previous post on marketing, we know how challenging for small businesses to do it successfully.

There are literally a million things one can focus in order to help grow your business by attracting more customers and improving your bottom line.

One useful thing I learned recently is the concept or idea of hyperlocal marketing.

This type of marketing is ideal for businesses who want to generate foot traffic and bring in visitors. It has become even more necessary in the aftermath of COVID-19. The pandemic really accelerated a desire by consumers to support local businesses.

What Is Hyperlocal Marketing?

The Wordstream website and blog defines hyperlocal marketing as the “process of targeting prospective customers in a highly specific, geographically restricted area, sometimes just a few blocks or streets, often with the intention of targeting people conducting “near me” searches on their mobile device.”

Got that? That’s a big mouthful there but essentially it means helping local businesses find customers or people who may not know about them when the person may need their service and they are close by.

The Near Me functionality alone in Google is a must for any local business whether you are a restaurant, grocery store or other type of business someone may need.

Ranking for Google Near Me Searches is really an art and a blog post in itself.

Why Use HyperLocal Marketing

The whole point here is though is that hyperlocal marketing can be used as a great way to get people to your store or eyes on your online listing.

The Wordstream piece also noted that “near-me searches grew in volume by 130% year-over-year between 2014 and 2015 alone, and since then, Google users are using near-me searches to find everything from post offices to New Year’s Eve fireworks celebrations.”

That is significant then even prior to the pandemic for any business then as there may be people close to you who are part of your target audience that need your services and don’t know yet that you exist.

Will Google My Business Help?

Google My Business is another key element in marketing a business and it’s really critical for hyperlocal marketing for a number of reasons.

The Social Pilot blog notes that “Google has reported that 46% of all searches have local intent and that business location is the main piece of information sought by local searches.”

Google My Business allows you to maximize that by having a listing for your business that contains important information about your business as well as a key component which is allowing customers to leave reviews.

Reviews can be tricky though as negative reviews can affect your business but potential customers will most certainly look at previous reviews of the business to determine if they might go with you.


Coffee Roundup Summer 2021

With the summer heat and this year’s heat dome you may think that coffee wouldn’t be a priority but this is the time to make iced coffee. Whether its pouring hot espresso over ice and adding home simple syrup or making cold brew coffee, summer is still a great time for coffee.

We tried a new favourite, Blindside Espresso, a Starbucks classic blend Caffè Verona, a vacation treat from Hornby Island Coffee Roasters called Helliwell Medium and the Strait Coffee Traders Blend Skookum Organic.

Blindside Espresso

I grabbed a bag of this coffee from Roaster Central at the Espressotec store on Clark Drive.

The company, Craft Coffee Canada, is a Vancouver Island based company that has a Crest series to which Blindside Espresso belongs.

This is a great coffee that the company says “is roasted to a light/medium level to help accentuate its bright acidity, syrupy body and wonderful sweetness.

I found it to be very good in my Aeropress while camping on Hornby Island when I was vacationing in August. The coffee itself blends Ethiopia and Colombian coffees.

Caffè Verona

Having worked at a Starbucks in the early 2000’s, I’ll admit I picked up a love for this blend because I drank so much of it for free. It was a great perk.

The coffee itself has been around since 1975 where according to Starbucks “it was created for a Seattle restaurant, naming it Jake’s Blend.”

The coffee’s second name – 80/20 Blend – refers to the initial blending of 80% Yukon Blend and 20% Starbucks Italian Roast.

I get the Italian Roast taste here which many people associate with Starbucks and its burnt way of making and roasting coffee. I don’t find it burnt personally.

Helliwell Medium

Helliwell Medium is named after Helliwell Provincial Park on Hornby Island. I visit there in the summer to vacation and over the years the Hornby Island Coffee Roasters brand has really grown there.

I grabbed this blend while there obviously and it is a great coffee for any type of brew method.

The biggest thing that I can say about this coffee is the memories it brings back of the Park itself while drinking it. I’ve included a picture. below.

Skookum Organic

I’ve reviewed this coffee before and it’s one of my favourites from the Sunshine Coast. Produced by Strait Coffee Traders, it blends their Italian and French Roast coffees.

Skookum is interesting because it blends two coffees that each contain two coffees themselves. The French Roast blends natural Ethiopian with hearty Mexican coffees while the Italian blends Central American and Indonesian coffees. That being said the flavour and taste of this coffee is a unique one.


Penticton Ale Trail Sampling at Bad Tattoo

In 2019 I wrote an extensive review of the breweries in Penticton and the Penticton Ale Trail. 

This past weekend I revisited the Trail once again having stopped in at Bad Tattoo Brewing Company. I wish the circumstances could have been better as it was for a family funeral and service but the uncle who passed was a fan of this brewery.

Bad Tattoo Delights With Some New Flavours and Familiar Ones

I sampled probably 9 or 10 of the beers at Bad Tattoo this past weekend focusing on a sampler of five my first visit and then a couple of glasses my second time in.

I previously had not tried or sampled the Sol Vida Cerveza Clara or the Hellion IPA.

My pervious review had the Los Muertos Cerveza Negra and Tramp Stamp Pale Ale. The Juice Bomb IPA I had tried last year but haven’t reviewed it.

Los Muertos is one of my favourite beers any time of year. It reminds me of Dos Equis Dark if anything and I enjoy its malty flavour. I love malty beers that remind me of coffee and chocolate.

With a 5% alcohol content and an IBU of 25, Bad Tattoo calls it “A malt forward, crisp, refreshing, medium-dark lager that loves being chilled down. Add a twist of lime for an authentic Mexican experience or enjoy on its own.” 

Tramp Stamp Pale Ale gives you the full American Pale Ale experience that the brewery says is “fruit forward American style pale ale hopped exclusively with Super Pride, Galaxy & Summer Australian hops.”

I like this beer a lot but that’s really not enough of a review to make someone seriously considering trying it. What I like about beers such as Tramp Stamp is that they are good anytime of year and that is why they are likely in their core lineup.

Flavour dominates here as well as enough little interesting things going on in its flavour profile to make you want to drink it again and again.

Hellion IPA/Juice Bomb 

This IPA is what you would expect in a beer that has a 6.3 percent alcohol by volume and an IBU of 66. Bad Tatoo says that “it has fruit forward notes of peach and mandarin followed by a light malt backbone to finish it off.”

It’s a great IPA and a definite alternative to the Juice Bomb IPA which is all the rage these days with the hazy look and tart taste. 

I’d call the Hellion a classic IPA that I would drink at any time of the year.

The Juice Bomb follows the New England IPA recipe that features an intense, tropical fruit centric, hop aroma and flavour. New England IPA’s are heavily dry hopped to the point of being hazy. They tend to have a fuller body, smoother flavour, and less perceived bitterness than typical IPAs.

Sol Vida Cerveza Clara

I hadn’t tried this beer before with my go to light choice being the Vagabond Pilsner. 

Sol Vida is an easy drinking, almost too easy in fact, light beer that reminds me of a Corona. When I found out that it was the lighter cousin of my favourite beer, Los Muertos, I had to try it. 

This beer could and should have a wide appeal because of it’s easy drinking nature. Hot days are the perfect time for this beer. 

Watermelon Gose

I’ll be the first person to tell you I am not a big Gose drinker. I had thought to label them trendy given the fact that I see them around a lot these days at breweries I visit so I decided to do some research.

Gose have actually been brewed since the 13th century and were named after the German town of Goslar. The beer itself was adopted in Leipzig as well so much so that it become known for being from there as well.

Since the late 1980’s it has been a popular beer style in the U.S. and it looks like it’s come to Canada as well. 

The issue I can’t get past the salty taste that emerges nor how my stomach felt after drinking one. I had a Los Muertos before so maybe it was the difference in beers. Not sure. 

Bad Light

This beer was another fine light beer from Bad Tattoo. What can you say but the spoofing here is obvious since the brewery is trying to cash in on the Bud Light crowd.

Good on them. Never been a serious Bud Light drinker and never will be. Tried to have two Bud Lights once in a row and I felt like I had eaten a meal. Definitely felt bloated and just generally gross.

This version however is a great light beer that works again on hot days. I have generally chosen pilsners over lagers for the warmer days of spring and summer but both the Bad Light and Sol Vida are both great choices for light beer drinkers. 


Major League Baseball Player Of The Week July 18th

For the first time in a couple of weeks it’s not a member of the Los Angeles Angels who gets MLB’s Player Of The Week but a Seattle Mariner, Mitch Haniger, who also plays in the American League West against Shohei Ohtani and company.

Willy Adames of the Milwaukee Brewers grabbed the National League Award.

Is Haniger a Trade Piece Or a Key Piece?

A recent Seattle Times piece talked about whether Haniger would be dealt at the deadline. At that time the Mariners were 33-35 and not close to the AL West lead at all.

Last week though Haniger single handedly almost demolished the Angels and maybe even their playoff hopes with a .455/.533/1.092 slash line. He had five hits in 15 plate appearances, including a double and two home runs last week.

He scored seven runs and drove in six runs while working a pair of walks and getting hit by a pair of pitches. He didn’t strike out in the series.

He has largely helped a Mariners team that shouldn’t really be in contention given their inexperience. Even when Jared Kelenic did come up to the Majors and was subsequently sent down again, Kelenic’s potential was seen but has not yet been realized.

Adames Helps Surging Brewers In The National League Central

Willy Adames was a .197 hitter when the Tampa Bay Rays traded him to the Milwaukee Brewers and since then he has been the Brewers best hitter.

He was a driving force for the Crew’s offense, going 8-for-13 (.615) with seven RBIs, six runs scored and a pair of homers to win Player Of The Week Honours.

Christian Yelich who lost the 2019 National League MVP to Cody Bellinger and was one of the better hitter’s in baseball when winning the 2018 MVP Award hasn’t been the same hitter so far this year.

Adames has picked up a lot of the slack as his Player Of The Week numbers indicate.


Major League Baseball Player Of The Week July 12th

David Fletcher continues the Los Angeles Angels run of Player Of Week Honours winning the award as we head into the All-Star Break.

Fletcher won for the American League while A. J. Pollock of the Los Angeles Dodgers won in the National League.

Fletcher is the second consecutive winner after Shohei Ohtani won last week and for the Week of June 14th to June 21.  Max Stassi won it in June as well.

Fletcher Hits In 24 Straight Games Doesn’t Get All-Star Nod

When the Angels signed David Fletcher to the a 5-year $26 million extension before the season started they knew what they had in Fletcher and his ability both at the plate and on the field.

In the pandemic shortened 2020, Fletcher finished the season batting .319/.376/.425 with 3 home runs and 18 RBIs in 49 games.

During the hitting streak, Fletcher has really elevated what is already a remarkable feet with last week’s games where he had five multi-hit games in six, including two four-hit games.

He collected 16 hits in 27 at-bats last week with two home runs and seven RBI. He’s hitting a ridiculous .439/.455/.592 over his hitting streak and has his season batting line up to .309/.336/.381 with two home runs, 32 RBI, four stolen bases, and 52 runs scored.

A.J. Pollock Key Part of Dodgers 22-1 Rout of The Arizona Diamondbacks

The Dodgers haven’t seen a Player Of The Week Award since 2019 when Corey Seager won.

Pollock was a three time winner of Player Of The Week with the Diamondbacks. The outfielder hit .391 with four homers, three doubles and a 1.505 OPS in six games last week. 

Pollock was one of the players who hit two homers last week when the Dodgers annihilated the Dbacks 22-1.

Pollock had battled COVID-19 in 2020 as well as seeing his personal life turned upside down when his daughter was born three plus months premature.


Beatles Come Back With Get Back

The Peter Jackson movie Get Back is finally going to be released on November 25 2021 after being delayed by COVID-19.

The project revives the Beatles Let it Be Movie released in 1970 from the original footage shot by director Michael Lindsay-Hogg.

The original Beatles Get Back Sessions from early 1969 evolved into Let It Be the album and the film were shot at Twickenham Studios and Apple Records.  

Here the band is recording their 12th album which was to go back to their rock and roll roots without overdubbing or fancy studio trickery.

The highlight of the film was the rooftop concert the Beatles did on January 30, 1969 that showcased the songs they had been working on with keyboardist Billy Preston augmenting the bands sound.

The concert itself generated a huge buzz with the police telling the band to shutdown after they churned out over 40 minutes of songs including highlights like Get Back and Don’t Let Me Down.

The Jackson Documentary which will air on Disney Plus in three two hour segments, goes back through 55 hours of video and over 140 hours of audio from the original sessions. 

If anything the Jackson documentary attempts to dispel the myth that the sessions were not in anyway productive or amicable. 

The Let It Be Film which showed George Harrison and Paul McCartney arguing over song ideas as well as other parts of the footage gave us a sense the band was on the way out.

They were however able to produce the original Let It Be Recordings as well as a followup in Abbey Road. 


Major League Baseball Player Of The Week July 5th

Ozzie Albies of the Atlanta Braves and Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels are the respective winners for the National and American Leagues for Major League Baseball and its Player of the Week Honours.

Ohtani Continues To Dazzle With His Two-Way Play

Ohtani earned his fourth career AL Player of the Week Award and his second in the last three weeks. Mike Trout accomplished the feat during his AL MVP Award-winning 2019 season with the Angels.

For Ohtani he posted a slash line of .286/.400/1.143 with eight runs scored, six home runs, eight RBI, four walks and a stolen base in six games.

Ohtani also received Player Of The Month for the month of June for the American League. He is the first Angels winner since Mike Trout in September 2018.

Ohtani had a .309 batting average with 20 runs scored, six doubles, a triple, 13 home runs, 23 RBI, four stolen bases and a .889 slugging percentage across 25 games.

Albies Nets First Player Of The Week Honours

After receiving his All-Star Game nod on the Sunday, Albies got his Player Of The Week Nomination on Tuesday to give him a great start to the week.

Albies 400 with three homers, 13 RBIs, and a 1.167 OPS in six games last week. 

Albies does not only impress with his bat but also with his glove at 2nd base. On defense in 2019 he had the best fielding percentage of all major league second basemen (.994). He has a .990 fielding percentage so far in 2021 that is tops in the league.

With the 2020 season shortened by COVID-19, Albies also missed a month due to injury. He still managed to have a .271/.306/.466 slash line with 6 home runs and 19 RBIs.


To Market Or Not To Market

If you are online regularly like I am and you wonder how to start writing a post about marketing you head over to Google and search the word marketing.

I got about 25,270,000,000 results (0.72 seconds) from Google when I did a search. Wow right? Now imagine being a small business owner wondering how to get started.

I realize the title above may throw you off but I couldn’t think of a better one. What is Marketing? did cross my mind but that sounds almost too easy.

What Should You Do?

There are so many things you can do as a small business owner to get started with marketing and marketing your business. There really is no one way or thing or system that may be sold to you to get started.

So how do you do it? I could be self serving and say hire a marketing business like mine because that’s the way it works right? No sorry it doesn’t.

What I would tell you though is it reach out to friends, contacts, people you meet at networking events, zoom calls after all with COVID, and begin to think about how marketing can help you.

Engage in some conversations, do some research, be open to feedback and be ready to take that next step in your business.

My goal here is to help you gain a better understanding and grasp of how marketing being such a vast undertaking may help you and I stress may.

Keep checking back on our blog for more marketing and business posts.


Los Angeles Angels New York Yankees Series Preview

The Los Angeles Angels are headed to the Bronx for a four game set against their American League Eastern Division rival the New York Yankees. The Angels are 37-40 and fourth in the AL West while New York is 40-37 fourth in the AL East.

The Angels come in having lost two of three in Tampa Bay against the Rays, including a 13-3 pounding on Saturday. With Sunday’s win they snapped a five game losing streak.

Los Angeles plays four against the Bronx Bombers before heading to Baltimore on the weekend.

Ohtani Continues To Amaze

He was a single short of hitting for the cycle on Sunday in Tampa Bay. With now 25 homers on the season, It took Shohei Ohtani 77 games to reach that mark. He stands alone as the only Angels player to do so. Not even Mike Trout hit this milestone in any of his seasons with the Angels.

Ohtani now boasts a slash line of .277/.363/.668 on the season. His 46 extra-base hits also lead the league.

If that isn’t enough, Ohtani has a 2.58 ERA in 11 starts with 82 strikeouts in 59 innings while pitching. Combine his pitching and hitting together he has a 5.0 WAR before the halfway mark of the season. 

This is the Ohtani we had glimpses of prior to 2021 but he was hampered by injuries, the COVID-19 pandemic, and other challenges. 

Trout’s Injury Status Updated

Mike Trout will move over to the 60 day injured list with his right calf strain but that won’t hamper his ability to return by a July 17th target date.

Trout was enjoying one of his best seasons with a slash line of .333/.466/.624 in 146 at bats before his injury on May 18th.

Yankees Taking Heat For Fourth Place Standing In The A.L. East

The Yankees return home having been outscored by The Boston Red Sox 18-7 in the three-game series at Fenway Park. It was Boston’s first time sweeping New York in consecutive series since 2011.

Boston hammered Gerrit Cole 9-2 Sunday.

New York is 5-5 in their last ten games with a team .252 batting average New York’s team on-base percentage of .318 is fourth in the American League. They have a 4.45 team ERA. They are 21-18 at home.

Cole is under scrutiny given his recent comments about the use of sticky substances and the fact that his spin rate has suffered with the league’s recent crackdown on pitchers.

DJ LeMahieu  riding a 10-game hitting streak

DJ LeMahieu was a bright spot for the Yankees against the Red Sox as he went 7-14 with one homer, two runs and four RBI in the three-game series.

He has a 333/.383/.547 line with four dingers and 15 RBI in the last 17 games leading us to believe that he is on pace for another MVP type season.

Aaron Judge leads the Yankees with 27 extra base hits and is slugging .509. He also leads the team with an OBP of .375.

The opening game of the series sees the Angels Dylan Bundy; 1-7, 6.68 ERA, 1.39 WHIP, 60 strikeouts against the Yankees Michael King; 0-3, 4.05 ERA, 1.35 WHIP, 34 strikeouts.