Sunday, June 15, 2014

Caffeination or Caffeine Nation


I am enjoying this lazy Sunday morning with a glass of cold-brewed coffee, with just a bit of sweetener and no milk or creamer. The beauty of toddy coffee is the flavor is so good and the acidity so low (67% less than traditional brew!), that I do not need to add all the cream & sugar as I do with regular drip. I have IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) and yes, it is as unpleasant as it sounds, so the lower acidity is a great help. I think the organic beans I use contribute, too.

The method to my madness

We now have a Kurig machine at the office, but it is only stocked with a breakfast blend, which I find too acidic. So I purchased a reusable K cup from Ekobrew and  bring in my own ground coffee. The metal mesh is not perfect, so I brew into a drinking glass, then pour over ice. Even in the winter I am drinking iced coffee!

I have not owned a drip machine for over 5 years, instead using Melitta pour over cone - either the single serving directly into my mug or thermal tumbler, or the 8-cup into a glass carafe, which then goes into a pre-warmed thermal carafe - or the Toddy Cold Brew system:

Why Toddy Cold Brew? 

During the cold-brew process, time replaces heat. Todd Simpson, a chemical engineering graduate of Cornell, and who developed the Toddy cold brew system, discovered that high temperature facilitates the release of undesirable flavor elements.
A roasted coffee bean contains many compounds that are extracted during the brewing process. Some of those compounds, including certain oils and fatty acids, are soluble only at a high temperature. During the cold brew process, coffee beans are never exposed to high temperature (this only occurs after a rich liquid coffee concentrate has been produced).
Deceptively simple, cold water brewing extracts the delicious flavor compounds (and some of the caffeine) from coffee beans, but leaves behind myriad bitter oils and biting fatty acids, including undesirable elements such as ketons, esters and amids.
These are the same bitter acids and fatty oils that surface to the top of your hot cup of coffee, and give hot-brewed coffee that familiar 'bite' (thus the reason that some 8 out of 10 people attempt to soften the acidic taste by adding milk or cream to their coffee).
The cold brew process creates a perfectly balanced and distinctively smooth cup of coffee - served steaming hot or iced cold. You're invited to taste the Toddy difference: the same taste that has delighted coffee drinkers for nearly 50 years.

Beans, Beans, the magical fruit

Hubby & I moved into our house almost 9 years ago, and just over 5 years ago, this little shop opened up on a corner nearby. I stopped in during the Grand Opening, and have been a loyal customer/evangelist ever since! Besides being a cornerstone of our nation's first "Green Dining District", FoGro has wonderful food, incredible customer service, and a great family of owners, workers, and customers.

Foundation Grounds uses only Goshen coffee to make their black gold, so I started buying my freshly-roasted beans and enjoy the flavor & supporting two local businesses.
Goshen Coffee organic, fair-trade, roasted right over the Mississippi in Edwardsville, IL

To hold the beans, I picked up the AirScape by Planetary Design from Foundation Grounds. At first I used it for the pre-ground beans I use at the office, but the vacuum seal is too good & would coat everything nearby with little black specks. So I took it home & use it for the whole beans - so much better!


I rarely use a ceramic coffee cup. I am waaay to clumsy for drinks without lids, so here is my lineup:
Contigo AutoSeal Travel Mugs - One handed operation, seals completely so I can throw in my purse or backpack.
Tervis Tumbler-Motherboard - Made in USA, lifetime guarantee, with excellent exchange if any issues (I know first hand!) and a full 24 ounces - perfect for the office.
CamelBak Insulated Water Bottle  Flip, Bite & Sip operation, so it completely seals, no condensation buildup on outside, and 20 oz. I have extra straws & bitevalves, so this is a staple for water, iced coffee, or icedtea. I attach it to my purse or backpack with a carabiner through the loop handle.

Coffea arabica: Caffeine - 1,3,7-Trimethyl-3,7-dihydro- purine-2,6-dione

Am I a coffee snob? Yeah, kinda. 
Am I a coffee geek? Yep, definitely!

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