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18.1.15

The Bucket List Coffee



Wild Mountain Kopi Luwak
By MysticalCoffee.com and roasted by the Caffeine Cowboy

  I had an entertaining few days with some plantation owners from Indonesia last summer at the Seattle Specialty Coffee Association Convention. I made friends with several gentlemen who produced Kopi Luwak along with their traditional coffee crop.
  Their plantations are large and secluded. Their crops are highly graded coffees even without the help of the wild civet cats that raid their fruit.
  They gather enough from their own surrounding forest to be considered a significant amount. Because of this, they can guarantee the coffee from the cherry to sellable beans.


 This is not the same all over. There are thousands of small batch growers who only gather enough to sell to a cooperative buyer.  In this case, the seeds are not uniform, they come from innumerable varieties of coffee, and all ranges of ripeness or even rot.
  These co-ops make up the largest suppliers for this coffee processed by a nocturnal Raccoon like, Lemur related fruit eating machine.
  I would not call this a bad product but it’s certainly second tier to the purist. 




Sumatran Batak Kopi Luwak  will take you to my direct source.
  The purist would like to know where the bean was grown, what altitude it grew at, what was the seed stock, how does the base crop rate out and who is accountable. 
  
 Third tier Luwak would be that coffee produced by feeding caged Luwaks with only cherries during harvest and forcing out as much product as they can for a month or two each year. 
  This is a prominent and growing practice in some countries and Robusta cherries are often used to turn a coffee that is the cheapest on the market in to the most expensive! The coffee is infinitely inferior.
  How many other crops if any, can you feed to birds or beast and make a fortune off the by-product!  They should at least put those animals up in luxury digs! Consider this: that Robusta might have normally have sold for $1 per lb! However, as much as can be eaten by Luwaks and discharged now might bring from $50 to $100 to unsuspecting buyers.
  The final and lowest tiers are those that only use a small amount of the true Luwak coffee and blend it with whatever they want to create a profile.

As I bring you great coffees from around the world, I don’t know which ones you will love, not care for, or truly enjoy for specific parings or occasions. Try Flor de Colombia, or Pearls of Sheba, or Mystical Blue Maui.  Who am I to know what flavors, character, and content rings your bells. 
What I can do is purchase clean distinguished coffees that can be compared and enjoyed like fine wines.
You might absolutely love Kopi Luwak. It is truly special. I can promise that if you are a coffee lover, you will appreciate the depth and range of delicate flavors. I know that our Kopi will be a distinguishing and adventurous taste of coffee at its best.
Check this culinary treat off your personal Bucket List. Sharing it with your coffee loving friends will send them off with a singularly memorable experience.
One of my great pleasures has become sharing this coffee and it's story!
Good Luwak, Bad Luwak? 
Very few places sell Luwak in the U.S. But because of social media culinarians and many world travelers, the experience is demanding attention. Selling for averages of $30-$50 per cup, it is truly a Bucket List item for coffee/wine enthusiast. If you are going to pay for the most expensive, exotic, and exclusive coffee in the world you really want to know where it was grown, when it was roasted, who roasted it, packed it, and delivered it to you.

23.12.14

My First Time


My First……
Romancing the bean series by Caffeine Cowboy

  A lot of chefs know I’m the coffee guy. My friends certainly do. A regular son of a preacher man, “the only one who could ever please you!”
  I have tasted many satisfying coffees over the years. In all other cultures, making a personal cup for friends, guest, or even themselves was not wasted on making a bad cup of coffee.
  They might add sugars and spices or any number of creative/available additives to make the drink worth the time.  But virtually every coffee drinking culture really still takes their coffee time seriously.
  Except in America! Even the best restaurants are brewing coffee by the pot. Starbucks, Royal, and Community Coffee heavy weights supply all the equipment and then funnel their bulk coffees into 4 Star venues. America isn’t choosing their coffee like wine. Coffee service is rarely personal any more.
  Do you wonder why Starbucks types are doing so well? I think it is a psychological reason. The beverage is being made especially for the customer! It is as simple as that! Why else would many thousands of people spend their car payment each month for not so great coffee?
  I am not so certain they are even really satisfied!
  And there lies my mission. To satisfy you!
  I am truly driven by my depth of exposure to the world of food and beverage and its relationship with coffee!
  So how did this passion ignite? What ‘got me in to coffee’?

CAMPFIRE COFFEE
By J.B. Blocker

  Over a small camp fire, Old Tom began by heating the well-cured little skillet he had once carried with him on the open trail. It was just breaking dark as others were showing up to the rodeo arena on the edge of town.
 He would often arrive before anyone else and be drinking his coffee when his sons and grandsons pulled up with their trailers. Others would show up on most Saturday mornings.
 This was the ‘60’s. I was a teenager in love with western lore. Tom was born in the ‘1870’s and had lived his youth in the time of the last great cattle drives. He was a real cowboy!

13.12.14

ICONIC! The hub of Downtown Dallas




  If you see the Eiffel Tower in a photo, you know you are looking at Paris. If you see the Sky Needle, you know it is Seattle.  When the Twin Towers were lost, a skyline photo of New York was not the same!
  As long as the great mirrored multilevel building with the great ball in the sky is in a photo, you know you are looking at downtown Dallas. If the photo doesn’t include the Hyatt Regency Dallas at Reunion most people wouldn’t know you were looking at the Dallas Skyline.
  Fifty Stories in the air, Wolfgang Puck’s 560 now occupies the Reunion Tower (the rotating ball in the sky). It is a must experience if you are visiting Dallas to view the city in all its glory at the Cloud 9 Cafe.
  The Hyatt Regency is perfectly suited to host conventions and perfectly located to easily access everything Dallas. When it opened in 1978, the city of Dallas became recognizable worldwide.
  Hundreds of thousands of guest each year take advantage of the 1120 rooms, 42 suites, 160,000 square feet of convention area, stunning views, and dining experiences to satisfy every whim.
  Just 10 minutes from Dallas Love Field and 15 miles from DFW Airport!
  This AAA Four-Diamond rated luxury hotel has an underground access to Union Station. From there, all the magical places you want to visit in Dallas radiates from this historic central transportation hub built in 1916. The 23 million dollar restoration can take you back in time and into the future.
  Amtrak can bring you directly to the Hyatt from all over America if you have the time to read or write a good book.
  From there you can ride the DART commuter transport system to Plano or Garland. The Cotton Bowl at Fair Park, the Dallas Zoo, the 6th Floor Museum, Gilley’s, the Dallas Convention Center, the West End Entertainment District, the American Airlines Arena and all parts in and around the Dallas Metropolitan Area are on the routes.
  You can take the Trinity Railway Express to DFW or on to Ft.Worth without getting wet!
ICONIC DINING
Featuring Executive Chef Hermann Hiemeyer
 

1.12.14

Great Chefs and Coffee


Romancing the Bean Series
by Caffeine Cowboy

 
Tales from the Old County
  I count among my friends and mentors some venerable and highly respected chefs and hospitality specialist.  These gentlemen are revered in the Dallas culinary community. They are iconic.
  Many learned their craft in the shadows of WWII. Swiss, Austrian, French, and German influences ignited their love of exquisite dining that they eventually brought to a booming Dallas of the 70’s. It was time of great hotels and the explosion of fine dining in downtown Dallas that brought these adventurous young chefs that changed the image of dining and brought European luxury and elegance to the table.
  I always felt that they liked me, but after the research for this story I realized that my charm my have been secondary to my devotion and accessibility to great coffees! 
Chefs Karl Hass and Klaus Curley 
  Many thanks to Chef Karl Hass and to the late great men Chef Werner Vogeli and the consummate G.M. Helmut Frenzen who as a team, made the 69th floor City Club in Dallas a legendary experience. 
  My 1st Dallas account as the Caffeine Cowboy was the City Club. I would tell people, "the closest coffee to heaven in Dallas was mine!"
  They shared pieces of their personal memories of coffee in their post war youth with me.  jb

29.10.14

The Great UnKnowns


isplaying Reunion at Reunion v3.docx.
Photo by Debbie Knowlton and D-Magazine
D-Magazine Article by Nancy Nichols 

  Among us are keepers of the flame!  Who truly understands the spark that ignited that inner fire? That spark which gave way to a young vulnerable flame. The flame that, when properly fostered, ignited into a raging inferno of desire capable of driving a person to a lifetime of the extraordinary?
  Who among us is equipped to predict when that passion, born of a creative young mind growing up in Germany, Austria, Switzerland or France, ultimately decides to settle in the most unlikely place a world away?
  That is exactly what happened in the span of several years stretching from the mid-70s to the mid-80s when a disparate group of chefs, each trained in the art of European cuisine and fine dining inexplicably relocated to Dallas, where they spawned a culinary revolution that reshaped and molded the Dallas food world.


Grant Kauffman is the author of two novels, including Project 14: The Legend of Beelzebub’s Bluff, book one of his middle grade adventure/fantasy series. He is owner of 12 Rounds Media, a video production company. www.12roundsmedia.com.        
Grant can be reached at grantk@12roundsmedia.com.

True Texas Cuisine
“They came into Dallas at a time when fine dining was a big ol’ T-bone, a loaded baked potato and an iceberg lettuce salad,” says Dotty Griffith, former food editor for the Dallas Morning News.
 “I became food editor in 1978 and that was when Dallas was really starting to enter a new age of cuisine. I can’t imagine the culture shock they must have experienced, most of them having come from Germany, Austria, Switzerland or France, and many of them had traveled much of the world in their training."

More than thirty years later,