company - education - coffee

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Summertime in Cambridge

I think summer may actually be here in Cambridge. It's a good time for reflecting and refocusing. All the students leave and the streets are a bit quiet as only the real residents of the area remain. Kaminsky left for the summer after giving notice at Simon's. Since I quit a long time ago and Kaminsky left also, I would ask not so politely for people to just get off my back about what's being served there! Good or bad, ask Simon or better yet the roaster. While I still go in occasionally, I have very little to do with what is being served, good or bad. I can make suggestions because Simon is a friend and my door is always open if he needs help but that's as far as it goes.

That out of the way, Ben and I have been meticulously plodding along chasing a goal not unlike someone else down south. We have to start from zero though, not just worry about two favored taste descriptors pairing well. Simply getting an ideal interpretation through a lot of experimenting and painful cupping sessions is a hard track but you learn a lot. The truth is that we as a coffee community don't often question the 'experts' and we really should. There's too much hero worship and acceptance that because someone made three thousand posts on a forum, they must be an expert. Try everything, test everything, and draw your own conlcusions. That aside, there is some interesting stuff going on we may never talk about on the blog hence why we are quiet these days.

A byproduct of that is that I really don't drink coffee right now and unless someone says something questionable, I wouldn't bother with the forums. Even when we hit on something really good, I taste it on the cupping table, enjoy it and then go home and de-coffee. I guess I am learning to disconnect more when not 'working' and that will be a good thing going forward as I hope to dig in soon for the long haul in coffee.

As I begin pondering a serious move into coffee, sometimes I sit back and I wonder what would have happened if I had stayed at Simons? What if I had not gone to Guatemala and made the friends I made? What if Chris didn't share the shots of Crescendo? What if I didn't guest Ecco and meet Andrew Barnett? What if Ben and I hadn't paired up more than a year ago at the Saturday Afternoonn Coffee Club? What if I decided not to walk down and check out his home setup? There are dozens of what if in our advancement in coffee. Chance meetings and luck have moved me in many directions and I feel lucky about that. As far as I've come, the hardest parts are still in front of us. Cheers to that!