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Uganda Coffee on Foodista
Want to catch a glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes, to get coffee from coffee farmers to your kitchens and cafes? Follow Crop to Cup's blog (here) and our twitter account to stay up to date on our trip to Uganda and Burundi this month. Taylor will first travel to Burundi, then the Crop to Cup team (Taylor and Alexis of C2C NY and Jake and Neil of C2C Chicago) will convene in Uganda. In Burundi we are building relationships with new groups of farmers by seeking out high altitude washing stations, well organized farmers and quality control processes, and working with farmers, local organizations and exporters to make Burundi a new "direct" origin for Crop to Cup, and...
Unlike wine, coffee does not get better with age. If you are keeping your coffee out, we suggest using an airtight container (ceramic or glass is best) to store your beans...

We are excited to launch new farmer cards! C2C lovers around Chicago and NY (and in your online order boxes) will now be able to meet these awesome farmers in Uganda. You will still find the other cards we've had previously - now there's just a larger set to collect! As always, you can email any of your coffees' farmers via farmers (at) croptocup [dot] com. Click on below thumbnails for larger versions and to read their stories.

Think of an Italian café. The waiter brings you a small, white, porcelain cup stained by a rich espresso crema. You sip it and - smack - it hits you, right on the roof of your mouth. Bitterness. It overrides the subtleties of the shot and leaves an aftertaste not worth remembering. Yet bitterness is an often desirable aspect of the drink. Did you know that there are two different types of coffee beans? Arabica, which is generally smooth and clean, and Robusta, which can have a more bitter mouthfeel. Robusta is often added to espresso blends to help form a nice crema, or frothy head, to the espresso. It also lends its potent bitterness, which helps many espressos to stand...
Tagged in: bitter coffee espresso
Coffee Processing/Handling Techniques (at origin) Play out in the Cup Lessons from cuppings of six different Uganda Bugisu coffees by Taylor Mork, Crop to Cup Coffee Co. (Brooklyn, NY) Yesterday at Crop to Cup Brooklyn we had an eye opening and tasty coffee cupping. The goal was to re-cup a set of 6 new crop coffee samples that we recently received from two sources in the Bugisu region of Uganda.  We had cupped them last Friday, off a nice sample roast created by no other than NYC coffee fave Daniel Humphries.  We cupped roughly 24 hours after roasting.  JD and his team from Oslo Coffee and a few other friends joined us, and we definitely got a good read on the...

June 08, 2009
Category: in Skill-Building: Sourcing
You already know about the state of the coffee industry. There’s some not-so-decent stuff going on. But, don’t be too discouraged: There are a lot of organizations and companies trying to reverse this trend. Look at TechnoServe, or the East African Fine Coffee Association (EAFCA) for examples of good people doing good things with coffee in the country of origin, or contact us to find out who is doing what in your community. Technoserve is one of those nonprofits with a small name in America, but a large presence on the ground. Visit their website to learn more about how they are positively affecting coffee-growing communities. Another organization working towards helping coffee growing communities is EAFCA. Their Secretariat is located in...

June 08, 2009
Category: in Skill-Building: Extraction
Coffee Tip of the Week: How ground is too ground? Coffee Grinding Guide, and Mastering the Blade Grinder Although we recommend a conical burr grinder over a whirly-blade grinder because of the burrs' ability to produce a much more consistent grind, know that blade grinders are usually less expensive and can still produce a quality grind if you follow a few simple tricks. For all types of grinds (coarse, medium, fine, etc), if using a blade grinder, we recommend grinding in short bursts of about 2 to 3 seconds each. Holding the lid firmly in place, shake the grinder a few times during the process to make sure beans grind evenly. The Course Grind is intended for use with press pots,...
Did you dig the Coffee Roasting tips in our bi-weekly newsletter "How to get the Best Brew for your Bean"? Well, here are the additional tips we promised! 1.      Get good beans, the coffee can only be as good as the beans that go into it. Don't settle for bargain brands - your stomach will thank you. 2.      Use cold, filtered water (any type of consumer-level filter is great). If you don't filter it, at least use clean water; coffee is only as good as the water you use. Do not use distilled water - only filtered, bottled, or spring water. 3.      Remove the used coffee and the filter immediately after brewing; if not, then the filter will continue to drip...
Tagged in: beans coffee crop to cup

May 26, 2009
Category: in News and Events
Did you know that coffee farmers can earn as little as four cents per pound of coffee sold in the US? (1) While partly due to high costs and the presence of many intermediaries, the effects of this are felt by you, the person who ultimately drinks the coffee. If farmers are stuck in poverty, or being paid the same shoddy price no matter what they grow, then farmers simply will not make the effort necessary to produce high quality coffee. We are working on a quality-driven solution to this problem by paying 20% premiums above market prices to reward farmers for their efforts in producing premium coffees. More, we put 5% of every coffee sale we make back to good...

May 13, 2009
Category: in News and Events
"McDonald's began a national advertising campaign Tuesday to promote its McCafe program, hoping its cappuccinos and lattes will draw customers from Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts. Starbucks is fighting back with deals on iced coffees. And Dunkin' Donuts has cut latte prices in some cities." The Chicago Sun Times did a report on these three giants and their marketing campaigns to try to undercut, overbrand, and "out-cool" the other guys. The Sun Times did a taste-test with three Chicago residents, comparing the different fast-food, speedy-coffee giants. While the taste test was using too small a sample of people to justify any accuracy, we found it to be a fun commentary on the various giants in the world of American coffee. http://www.suntimes.com/lifestyles/food/1560077,CST-NWS-coffeetest06.article...