Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Happy un-Camper!

MUG: German-made Waechtersbach "happy man" mug, possessing all the virtues and qualities of Waechtersbach coffee mugs that I have extolled in the past. Simply the world's best commercially-made mugs (speaking for the ones made in Germany).

COFFEE: Fresh ground at O'dark thirty from Colombian Supremo medium roast beans, sourced from Central Market. Familiarity breeds contentment.

NOTES: After several days of on and off travel (with a couple more yet to come), staying in other people's homes, historic hotels, and run-down motels, and eating in restaurants and with hosts, it's indescribably wonderful to be home, enjoying a pot of my coffee. Strong stuff, and soul satisfying (combined with morning temperatures in the mid-50s). I'm home, and I'm happy to be here. I like it here.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Lodging my observations.

A USA made (I forgot the manufacturer) china naval mug. Heavy, thick-rimmed, wonderful mug, worthy of a robust, manly brew. A champion "big finger" mug.

COFFEE: Thin diner-brew coffee, perfectly typical of what's served nationwide, totally devoid of all the characteristics that make coffee more than simply a habitual breakfast beverage. The coffee is supplied by DeCoty Coffee in San Angelo, and is served all over West, Texas. The coffee itself may be fine, but the accepted brew-strength is just pathetic.

This example was obtained at the Black Bear Restaurant at Indian Lodge Resort in the Davis Mountains state park, close to the McDonald Observatory. You gotta love a restaurant that serves grilled liver-and-onions, and has both black bear and mountain lion warnings posted on the door.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Whoa Nellie.

Commercial diner mug by Buffalo. Sort of a Mid-Century Modern design. Odd "contemporary" handle shape, really nice decorative band.

COFFEE: Big Blend coffee from Big Bend Coffee Roasters as served at Nel's Coffee Shop in Ft. Davis, Texas. Brewed too weak (standard diner strength), so there's no way to tell if the coffee's any good.

NOTES: Nel's is connected to The Bookfeller used book store, both physically and by marriage. Good breakfast, however.

Limping on.

MUG: Paper cup. What can I say?

COFFEE: Hotel Limpia House Blend, from Big Bend Coffee Roasters. Good body, brewed stronger than one might expect, but a slight undertone of 'sweetness' that I find unnecessary.

Waiting in the empty lobby at 5:30 a.m. Drinking it on the Hotel Limpia's front porch. An altogether nice way to start the morning.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Debris field

Paper cup, with a plastic lid and a corrugated paper sleeve. I forgot to remove it, and so the aromatic and tactile experience was diminished considerably.

COFFEE: Starbucks™ Anniversary Blend. Touted as "bold and spicy", I found it thin and underwhelming.

NOTES: The debris field represents my using a Starbucks™ as my early morning home away from home in Tulsa. A plastic cup of water (the best thing I had there), the wrapper from my apple-spice muffin, an empty pill bottle that held my vitamins and prescription meds, a used, tightly folded paper napkin (as is my habit), and the coffee.

Am I the only one who is noticing a thinning of the brew-strength at Starbucks™? This has happened a few times, recently (usually when I am traveling). Lowering the bar, perhaps, to gain market? Or is it just me?

Monday, September 13, 2010

End of days coffee

MUG: Styrofoam cup. As styrofoam cups go, this one is very attractive, and I did appreciate the sanitized wrapper.

COFFEE: Mello-Cup blend from Farmer Brothers. Suitable for pouring on cockroaches, I suppose.

NOTES: This is the coffee that was supplied with the coffee maker in the Tulsa Days Inn motel I stayed at last weekend. I brought my own coffee, but made this as a demonstration. The little packet is designed to make 4 cups (I used it to make two cups, which was still too weak). I compared it to the four cups worth of coffee I brought from home, and mine had a 4:1 volume ratio over the motel coffee. Cockroaches beware!

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Mugga Java

Well, cup, actually. It's a Japanese decorative porcelain cup. Nice touch, good lip, comfortable handle. The decoration includes gold glazing, and the artwork is from a 18th Century celestial illustration (sun, moon, stars, comets, planets).

Mocha Java beans from Allegro Coffees. Ground this morning as lightening flashed across the sky. Mocha Java used to be my preferred coffee blend thirty-five years ago. In formulating my own private blend with Coffee Company, I finally settled on estate grown Colombian Supremo as my daily grind preference. Sometimes less (fuss) is more (satisfaction).

NOTE: Bought this because we were out of beans, we were at Whole Foods, and I didn't like the look of their Colombian. It's OK, if a little more acidic than I like. I noted that both Mocha (Yemen) and Java (Indonesia) were in the news this week. Yemen because of terrorist activity, Java because of volcanic. Colombia, on the other hand, was peaceful.