Mypressi Twist

We just found this really neat gadget, which apparently has won all sorts of honors and awards.  The device, called the Mypressi Twist is a handheld, portable espresso “machine” that apparently provides perfect extraction pressure anywhere in the world.  All you need is the device, espresso grounds (or pods), hot water, and a CO2 cartridge!

Check it out at http://mypressi.com/

I would love to hear from anyone who knows more about this or has even . . . → Read More: Mypressi Twist

The Man With the Golden Tongue

Courtesy of one of our loyal readers.  We welcome all comments at tips to contact@manhattanroasts.com.

This out of the BBC.  One of the world’s foremost coffee tasters, Gennaro Pelliccia, a “Master of Coffee” has had his tongue insured by Lloyd’s of London.  The famous shipping insurer, known for covering anything you need to protect, has allowed a £10,000,000 policy on Pelliccia’s tongue.  Pellicia’s employer, Costa Coffee better hope Pelliccia does not need to cash in on that policy any . . . → Read More: The Man With the Golden Tongue

Buying Green Coffee, Environmentally That Is

We spend so much time thinking about the bad in big coffee (see here and here), but occasionally we have to give credit where credit is due.  Last week Starbucks Coffee cut the ribbon on a new roasting facility in South Carolina.  The opening is surprising enough in an economy that is forcing the company to contract its geographic hold, but that was not the only surprising twist.

Starbucks’ new coffee roasting facility is LEED Silver certified.  LEED will have little to nothing to do with the quality of coffee roasted in the facility, but will have a much more profound impact on all of our lives.  Indulge us as we skirt the realm of coffee and look at why Starbucks’ move is admirable.

LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, which is a rating system developed by the U.S. Green Building Council to encourage environmentally friendly construction projects.  Its rating systems are developed and updated by volunteer LEED committees of practitioners and experts in an effort to give recognition to those who deserve it.  As an added benefit, often the higher up-front costs of constructing environmentally friendly buildings are greatly overshadowed by the savings created by energy efficiency.

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Cheaper Coffee Coming Your Way?

According to the New York Times today, the wholesale price of roasted coffee dropped 2.7% in January.  At the same time, dairy products dropped 7%.  In theory this should mean consumers will be able to spend less on their daily coffee, particularly if it is a milk-heavy drink.  We all know the chance of a price drop to consumers is unlikely, but at least now maybe our favorite coffee shops will have an easier time staying open and brewing high . . . → Read More: Cheaper Coffee Coming Your Way?

The Best Part of Waking Up Is… Starbucks in Your Cup?

Maybe we should stop making these comparisons, but Starbucks (SBUX) is making it too easy.  This week Starbucks Coffee will be introducing a new product they “have been working on… for more than 20 years.”  It will be an instant coffee designed to taste just like regular Starbucks coffee, but at a lower price point.  20 years to do what Kraft and Folgers have been doing for double that time…

According to the company this product should allow consumers who could not otherwise afford their coffee to begin “brewing” at home.  It will also allow Starbucks an entry into the $17 billion global instant coffee market.

I would love to know whether consumers who view Starbucks as too expensive for them would ever switch from their regular instant coffee to Starbucks, and whether any loyal Starbucks drinkers will switch to instant coffee to get their favorite brand at a lower price.

In other news, Starbucks . . . → Read More: The Best Part of Waking Up Is… Starbucks in Your Cup?

Starbucks 2.0 (f/k/a Peet’s Coffee)

Do you remember when Starbucks coffee was “gourmet”?  Those days when it was a treat to go to one of their stores for a cup of delicious coffee or a frothy, delightful cappuccino?  Now there is a new kid on the block.  Actually, the kid has been around for a while, but like the plain girl who went through puberty and became beautiful, this store is just now becoming noticeable in its own right as a top coffee-chain.**

After enjoying a tasty double espresso from Joe The Art of Coffee at Grand Central yesterday (a review will be coming soon), I wandered back up to the office and settled in to listen to Peet’s Coffee’s webcast report of the company’s fourth quarter and year end results.  I had expected nothing but doom and gloom from the report, since Starbucks had taken such a hard hit, and consumer spending in general has fallen so dramatically.

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Starbucks = McDonalds?

There could not have been a better time for the first post in our ression series than today.  According to a press release this morning Starbucks Coffee Company will be offering “pairings” of food and beverage, which allow consumers to have “an average savings of as much as $1.20.”  We will be posting an article later in the series on the economics of companies like Starbucks, but for now we ask whether this is the beginning of a transition from everybody’s favorite ”upscale” coffee shop to just another fast . . . → Read More: Starbucks = McDonalds?