Join us in a city near you for “Pressure + Flow”

La Marzocco USA is pleased to announce the four-city event series “Pressure + Flow,” taking place in Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, and Chicago in February and March 2013.

Each event will feature a day of learning, with presentations and hands-on guided learning experiences on emerging coffee topics:

PRESSURE: A guided hands-on learning experience with the Strada EP. Hear about how the Strada EP came to be, what we’ve learned about brewing coffee using the Strada EP as a platform, then spend time with the machine.

FLOW: This session will give an overview of water science, the interaction of coffee and water, and leave participants with information on how to test their water and make informed water conditioning purchase decisions.

The events will also feature a fun, interactive “Espresso Machine Loveline” session hosted by a special guest in each city, with answers by Dr. Scott Guglielmino. Bring all of those questions you’ve been too embarrassed to ask; no question is off limits!

The agenda for each event is:

10:00-12:00 & 2:00-4:00: PRESSURE: Guided hands-on learning with the Strada EP (session content presented twice)

4:00-5:00: Espresso Machine Loveline

5:30-7:00: FLOW: Water science 101 with comparative espresso tasting featuring waters from around the US

Catch Pressure + Flow on these dates in these cities:

February 13th: Los Angeles, Siren Studios

February 16th: San Francisco, Guerrero Gallery

March 6th: New York, Attic Studios

March 9th: Chicago, Ravenswood Events Center

Each event is free and open to the public; registration is encouraged. Participants who register in advance will receive a special La Marzocco gift.

Register HERE and choose the ticket type for your city’s event.

A large thank you goes out to our coffee and small wares sponsors: Atlas Coffee Importers and Espresso Parts.

Ritual’s New Digs

Sweet beans of Esmeralda! Ritual‘s new roastery looks tight! Located in downtown SF, just south of Market St, it forms a nice midpoint in the downtown coffee corridor that includes Blue BottleSightglass, and now Ritual.

Here are a few pictures from their Open House:

Eileen, the one who puts the ritual in Ritual.

 

Big open space at the new roastery. It’s for roasting and operations use for now but there may be a retail cafe in the future.
Eileen and her GB/5.

SF Coffee Scene*

*Well, due to limitations in my travels last week (Thanksgiving), this is only partially representative of the city, not of greater SF or the Bay Area, which I hope to fully document someday.

SF is HOT! For coffee, that is. Roasters there are certainly bringin’ it with their coffees and their visions for the Third Wave (or Fourth Wave, for that matter).

Justin pulling shots on Four Barrel’s double Mistral

Take Four Barrel, for example. Ask the people there about what coffee most excites them right now and, to my surprise (and initial horror), they said DECAF! Now, I’m philosophically opposed to decaf and the only good decaf I’ve had was a decaf espresso from Verve a couple years ago. To my pleasant surprise, Four Barrel’s decaf espresso was amazing! Of the beans used in their decaf is the Ethiopia Mordecofe, a coffee hand picked by them for decaffeination (as opposed to coffees picked by decaffeination companies). Mordecofe is offered three ways at Four Barrel – decaffeinated, washed, and natural (highly recommended!).

Four Barrel has recently reopened their back alley bar, this time with a built in bar instead of a cart. The idea is to offer a more limited but more personable approach to customers that come through the alley. It will be operated by their head trainers and/or baristas in training from their wholesale accounts. It’s a terrific concept and I’ve had amazing shots in the back bar.

Down the street on Valencia is Ritual. The cafe is busy busy BUSY (which is a good thing)! Soon they’ll move the roaster and green bean storage to revert the area back to dining room style seating for a more intimate setting. On the coffee side, they’ve recently started offering Panama Esmeralda in special handmade packaging (very cool cardboard and spray paint!), just in time for the Holidays.

Blue Bottle’s cafe (with their Mechanical Paddle Linea) and roastery in Oakland. Note the warm Californian sun. How we so need it in Seattle.

Hop on the BART to Oakland and there is Blue Bottle‘s new roastery and a small cafe. The place is spectacularly clean (by that I mean clean and clean/sharp looking). In addition to the standard roasting/packaging area for coffees, office, and tech/training room, there is a cool presentation room, a full kitcken/bakery (they make killer chocolate chip cookies and $9 waffles), and a see through cupping room. If it wasn’t for the coffee equipment, the place might be mistaken for an art gallery.

Mechanical Paddle Linea at work at Blue Bottle’s BUSY cafe at SF Fisherman’s Terminal.

Back to SF side of the Bay at the Ferry Building (a touristy place for foodies) is one of Blue Bottle’s cafes, a very busy one at that. Featuring a Mechanical Paddle Linea as their main production machine, each espresso shot is expertly soft pre-infused for a nicely rounded, rich taste. With the Mechanical Paddle, the barista has more control (with variable pressure) over the soft pre-infusion process and thus requires a very well trained barista to continuously pull shots while there are a dozen people waiting in line.

Perhaps one of the most exciting up and coming roaster is Sightglass, just south of

Jerad and Ally of Sightglass. Pulling shots on their Slayer. Construction is afoot behind the wall of canvas.

Market in downtown. While their new roastery and cafe is still under construction, they are selling drinks on their cart to the passerby. Currently offering Verve coffee until their own roaster goes live (hopefully sometime later this month), they make fantastically prepared drinks every single time. With a huge space, a beautifully designed bar, and an u-shaped balcony seating area overlooking everything, this will be one of the most awe-inspiring coffee destinations for some time. If you go, be sure to try their mocha, which uses a specially sourced chocolate. It’s literally a chocolate cherry bomb.

What Can Be Better? Bikes and Coffee!

Mojo Bicycle Cafe in SF

Mojo Bicycle Cafe is a bike shop and coffee bar! Featuring a La Marzocco Linea pulling De La Paz‘ espresso. Also brewing Ritual on drip. They carry Felt, Swobo, Jamis, Rock Lobster, and Kona bikes. They pull a mean shot, especially for a place that’s not 100% specialized in coffee.

Bikes and coffee go very well together. We need more of these kind of shops people!

Four Barrel Coffee SF

Four Barrel Coffee's Mistral
Four Barrel Coffee’s Mistral

In Jeremy Tooker’s newest venture, he combined lots of wood furniture, open space, wall mounted dead animal heads, dedicated cupping table, and, of course, awesome coffee. All of this resulted in what’s commonly referred to as Four Barrel Coffee in the Mission district of SF. Recently, they have just turned one year old, and they are sure doing well, pulling kickass espressos on their double Mistrals. They roast onsite and, if you’re in town, definitely check them out! They are literally down the street from another seriously excellent roaster, Ritual Coffee.

Animal heads and lots of coffee. Is that a wet boar note I taste in the coffee?
Animal heads and lots of coffee. Is that a wet boar note I taste in the coffee?

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