In Toronto, I’m blessed with a lot of local indie coffee shops that sell local brews. I picked up this Heritage blend by Pilot Coffee Roasters.
I loved this blend. It requires no sugar (in fact I feel like sugar ruins it!) and there is a lovely tone of swiss chocolate and toffee when you add just a bit of cream or milk. These are some of my favourite beans so far.
My sister gifted me a Bodum French Press set for Christmas that has a coffee bean grinder and hot water boiler. Now I’m excited to explore the world of coffee beans.
My first bag was San Diego Coffee’s “Dutch Chocolate” flavour, that I ordered on Amazon. It’s a Medium Roast of 100% Arabica beans. Though I’m still working out the perfect way to use the French Press, I found this coffee very smooth and light. The chocolate came through the most when the only thing added was cream. I found sugar competed with the flavours and this coffee didn’t need to be sweetened (a plus since I’m trying to cut adding sugar to coffee).
What’s your favourite coffee bean? I’m open to suggestions!
I was lucky enough to be selected by Influenster for their Keurig Vox Box. This included a Keurig K200 system and some Van Houtte Specialty coffee.
I unboxed the thing on Youtube.
What’s different about this system compared to my older machine was that it included a water filter as well as a cleaning ball. These are cool new additions to those that don’t have Brita filters and were previously clueless on how to clean the machine.
I like that this system was compact because the (removeable) water tank was at the back. This is a Keurig 2.0 system, so there was an electronic display. I found the electronic part a bit unnecessary as it mostly just bossed you around with directions like “LIFT LID” “ADD WATER”.
Since I own a machine, I do have cups, but many aren’t suitable for the 2.0 system. You can tell what is suitable because they have a white rim for DRM. I decided to try the Van Houtte Specialty coffees on the new machine.
There’s two steps to making a vanilla latte or a cappuccino. The first is a package of white powder that is added to the cup before you put it in the machine. The second is the K-Cup. I assume the first is what makes it nice and frothy! It definitely delivered on it’s frothy goodness, almost like one you could get in a local café, but made conveniently at home!
My first impressions of this machine was that it is compact for small counters and comes with more accessories than older ones. Whether or not it is worth limiting my selection of K-Cups (if I replaced my older machine) remains to be decided. That’s the biggest hurdle with this machine for me. I love the Keurig system otherwise.
I have a terrible habit of drinking too many coffees in one day. I average 2-3, one in the morning, one in the afternoon and occasionally one in the evening if I know I am heading out for a long night.
The one in the morning I make at home but the others are often store bought at Timmies or some other coffee place. This can be up to $2-5 depending on where I get it from and what I get. Often I’m in it for the sugar, other times I need the placebo of drinking it to feel more awake.
I decided to consciously cut of coffee from my day. I can’t cut it entirely, though I did once for an entire month. Even a cup will make a difference in my budget as well as lower my sugar intake.
The only times I will take that second cup is when it involves some social obligations. I never believe in inconveniencing other people just because of something I am doing. So yes, I will still meet people over coffee (because tea is even more of a waste of money).
Think of how much difference even 3 days a week can make on your budget. That’s minimum $6 pocketed, $24 by the end of the month. That’s an extra vinyl, concert ticket or money that can be donated to charity. I can do a lot with a few extra dollars.
There’s an adorable café in my area called the Intergalactic Travel Authority. Until recently, I thought it was legitimately a travel agency. Then I walked by one light and the portal and the back was glowing. I had wanted to visit ever since but it’s usually closed by the time I come home from work. This summer, I have half days on Friday so I went into the café yesterday to do some writing.
What I learnt was that this was no ordinary coffee shop. All the profits from the coffee sales go to a charity program called Story Planet. The program focuses on teaching children how to be creative and express themselves through literacy. They take place in the back of the café in a classroom behind the secret portal.
Some of the stories that were created during this program are for sale inside the shop. I love the idea of this program. All kids should be encouraged to write and what an awesome way to do so and make their imaginations come true! There are also random trinkets and art for sale.
There are even interplanetary spices for kitchens in need.
I ordered a mocha and they make a mighty fine one! I will definitely make galactic travels occasionally to splurge on a guilt-free mocha to support a wonderful cause. If you’re in the area, please consider buying a coffee here if you get the chance!