Tag Archives: coffee

Little Bean Blue, a non beer post, more of a coffee one…

As its the post Christmas down time heaps of the city cafe’s are closed, including Crema Espresso Bar on little Collins where I usually get my coffee. Most often this is my own caffeine powered concoction of a large long mac, about 5 shots of espresso with a dash of milk. Mostly I get the organic one, it’s a nicer roast than their standard coffee. However right now they are closed and I am still addicted to my coffee.

So have to try some new places.

Yesterday I grabbed a coffee from Mama’s Boy (again on Little Collins) not a bad coffee, but sandwiches are their real thing. The meatball and meat loaf toasties are excellent. Got to love a good sandwich.

Today I went into Little Bean Blue. I know nothing about this place other than it seems to mostly do coffee, looks cool and new and had a cold drip machine set up on the counter. They also had the array of pour over gear that seems to be the new coffee thing in Melbourne. I’ve had a pour over once at St Ali, liked it but didn’t love it. I think I’ll have to try an ice pour over, sounds like the perfect summer coffee. Anyway to my coffee. I went safe, had a strong latte (I usually get this or a long mac). Excellent, smooth, chocolaty, soft coffee. Excellent coffee. A little more expensive than my regular hit but still the goods.

Did I mention that this was a non beer post? OK I’ll sneak a little beer stuff in. I’m thinking about what the best way to get some coffee into a beer is for me? I’ve put plunger coffee into the keg before, not really sure of the results as I also added bourbon and oak. I’ve also heard of adding coffee (plunger or espresso) to the boil. I also have the option of putting ground beans in the mash or adding beans to the ferment or in a keg, kind of dry beaning.

A few options there to think about, not sure which way I’ll go. Good coffee at Little Bean Blue though.

Caffeine kicking in now, better do some work.

Cheers D

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Mikkeller Beer Geek Brunch Weasel (fridge aged)

I’m home from work. The dishes are done. I think I know what I’ll have for dinner (chops and salad). There is bugger all on TV. What should I do? (other than blogging, which I am doing, but thats not all that I’m doing. I digress)

This was decided some time earlier thanks to an amazing series of coincidences.

  1. I like coffee. Lots. Most people who know me would agree with this. My standard mid morning coffee is a large long mac. I think it has about 5 shots of espresso in it.
  2. A few months ago I purchased a bottle of Mikkeller Beer Geek Brunch Weasel, a beer with coffee in it.
  3. Today on the train the Brewing Network guys were talking to Jeff Bagby from Pizza Port Brewery and tasting his Coffee Monster – a beer with coffee.
  4. Last night I drank one of the beers (sorry cider) that had been sitting in my fridge for months.

So now I’m drinking Mikkeller Beer Geek Brunch Weasel, a big stout with rare coffee. So what does the somewhat excentric Mikkeller say about this beer –

This imperial Oatmeal stout is brewed with one of the world’s most expensive coffees, made from droppings of weasel-like civet cats. The fussy Southeast Asian animals only eat the best and ripest coffee berries. Enzymes in their digestive system help to break down the bean. Workers collect the bean-containing droppings for Civet or Weasel Coffee. The exceedingly rare Civet Coffee has a strong taste and an even stronger aroma.

Thats right, a Vietnamese cat has eaten and shat out the coffee in my beer, and I do not have a problem with this at all. This is one of the most expensive coffee’s in the world. I’m not sure if the same process works if you can get your moggy to eat some coffee beans, and since coffee probably wont grow in Melbourne I doubt I’ll get to find out myself. It’s also known as Kopi Luwak.

So what is the beer like? Big, Thick, Rich. It kind of poured like a milkshake, really had a vicious look to it. It also leaves an iodine coloured cling on the glass. And its black, really black with a thick chocolate head. It has a strong yeast and roast character, and I can’t really pick the coffee out as a single flavor, I’m guessing its melded in with the roast and black malts, that often have similar flavor characteristics to coffee thanks to the roasting process. The coffee may add a little bit of an acidic backbone to the beer. There is a strong boozy nose on the beer too, its 10.9% ABV so no surprise there. Actually as the beer warms up a little the coffee flavor is coming through a little more strongly.

I have heard that beer geeks all round the world have collectively lost their shit over this beer. I’m probably not going to be one of them. Dont get me wrong I do lile this beer, but I’ve had better big stouts, like the 8 wired one for example, but it was over hyped to me and perhaps that’s what has swayed my thoughts on this beer. What I will always like about this beer, and all others that Mikkeller makes is Mikkeller. The guy is crazy, has no brewery and makes great beers. Lets call him one of my brewing heroes.

So here’s to more crazy beers from Mikkeller, not that I need to toast to that, he’s not likely to stop.

Cheers D

PS – oh I need to note that I may have committed a somewhat of a fo par as I did not drink the Beer Geek Brunch at Brunch time. I do not understand or like brunch, I like both breakfast and lunch, but not brunch. It’s a made up thing, still apologies to Mikkeller if this is a problem.


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Sick day and customer service

Having a day on the couch today. Feeling crappy and not really a fan of it. Started feeling a bit shitty at work yesterday, blocked up in the head and just sort of vague.

Firstly daytime TV is really bad. Just watched a bit of JAG and am now into an episode of MacGyver. His mullet is awesome.

Secondly I’ve been having some issues with my home espresso machine. I usually start the day with at least one strongish coffee. Have done for years except for a weird 12 months in about 2005 when I went off coffee. Still don’t understand how that happened. Anyway I did a bit if tinkering last night and found a blown seal (yea I know the joke about the penguin eating ice-cream).  Thanks to that the idea of a new coffee machine is on hold and a new seal is on its way from the good people at the Breville customer service center.

I usually would struggle to put the words “good people” and “call centre” in the same scentence, first time for everything. One call, no redirections, spoke to a bloke called George who knew what part I wanted and had it sorted and on its way to me all for less than $12 in about 5 minutes. This was even cheaper than eBay. Breville gets two thumbs up from me for excellent customer service.

There is some line about if you get bad service you tell X number of people, good service no one. This is my crack at doing the opposite. Breville customer service is excellent! buy their stuff!

Until the parts get here I’m back to using my old Italian style stove top coffee maker, and until the machine explodes my plans for a new fancy coffee machine are on hold. I saw a way too fancy and overpriced one at The Sensory Lab (downstairs in Little Collins St Melb David Jones) but it looked the goods, however at $800 rather than $12 it;ll have to wait.

As there will be no need to lash out on caffien delivery devices I think I’d better go get some fittings so I can rig up some hoses to plug my hop back, march pump and plate chiller together. Not quite how that will work but I’ll figure it out. Anything other than watching more MacGyver. Like Richard Dean Anderson’s mullet this really hasnt aged well.

Coffee’s ready. Going now. Might have some panadol too.

Cheers D

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