Tag Archives: coffee

Lyttelton Coffee Company – substantial brunching

I bet you think an egg is something you casually order for breakfast when you can’t think of anything else. Well, so did I once, but that was before the egg and I.
~ Claudette Colbert

Were we full from our yummy visit to Christchurch Farmers’ Market? Oh, yes. As we sat in the car I thought I would just have spinach for dinner and eat nothing else in between. Once we got to Lyttelton though, the spinach idea flew right out of my head – could we resist brunch at Lyttelton Coffee Co.? It did not take me long to decide that that would be idiotic (since I did not know when I’d next be in Christchurch)! We stepped in.

It was very crowded – people everywhere, obviously here for good reason! Fortunately a sweet couple was just getting ready to leave, so Ian hurriedly secured the table while I joined the queue of hungry ones.

I was quite glad to be behind a few others in the queue, since it gave me some time to survey their delightful cabinet selection!

Both of us got long blacks (which were very potent and very good). Food-wise, Ian ordered free range scrambled eggs on toast, while I opted for a ‘vege breaky’, poached eggs with baked beans, hash brown and field mushrooms. Everything on my plate was warm and cooked to perfection. The hash brown was a nugget of feathery potato strokes; the baked beans tasted like laughter; the mushrooms were simply flavoured in the best way so they still tasted exactly like mushrooms, but better. All this, on top of eggs and bread, made for a very substantial brunch indeed…

Leaving us with plenty of energy to walk around Sumner, soak in the sunshine, do some shopping, etc and have a much-needed catch up!

Lyttelton Coffee Company – 29 London Street, Lyttelton, Canterbury – Phone: 03 328 8096

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Not just coffee

I think if I were a woman I’d wear coffee as a perfume.
~ John Van Druten

A group of us went on a round-the-world tour on Wednesday night. Led by Bink and our noses, we journeyed through Papua New Guinea, Cuba, Ethiopia… it was wonderful. I’m talking about coffee cupping at Memphis Belle – if you’re in Wellington, don’t miss out on this very cool experience!

It was a pleasure to delve deeper into the world of coffee. We had 8 glasses of ground coffee placed before us, and I wondered what we were going to do. Coffee cupping was a new, foreign experience for me.

I could write more about how we circled the table, sniffing, tasting, commenting and marveling – but really, what captured me was less to do with what we were sniffing or seeing. I felt a fleeting sense of sadness at the thought of people in business suits who cheapen coffee by equating it with a cup of bitter blackness, the sole purpose of which is to wake us up to help us concentrate on our spreadsheets.

Because really, coffee is so much more than just brown beans/liquid stimulant. Coffee is a world phenomenon. As I tasted the coffee, registering the different notes – earthy, nutty, smoky, sweet – many thoughts came to mind.

We tasted coffee from different regions, farmed by different hands… and amazingly, when I really put my nose to the beans, I smelled alot more than just the generic pungent, robust smell of coffee. I swear I could smell peanut butter, peach sorbet, heck – one of the coffee glasses even smelt like roast chicken. I know, it’s bizarre!

What’s more, it smelled of energy. Farmers’ toil and pride. Fruits of the earth. Sunshine. Conversation. Beauty of the senses. It was so rich, so poignant.

We also had a discussion about fair trade coffee after that. They buy only fair trade green beans. What impressed me was the fact that I could see they weren’t doing this just to feel good about themselves, or to secure bragging rights about being Kind People. From what they said, it was obvious that they had invested much thought into the coffee industry, their values, ethics, passion, and how they could best help.

I think Nick, Bink and the rest of the Memphis Belle team are more than just coffee guys, or guys out to make a living. I was really impressed by their utter unmistakeable passion… passion about coffee, the different ways to brew and enjoy it (you should see their range of equipment, I’d never seen any of those gadgets before)! Passion about fair trade, more than just the ‘feel good’ factor of buying and selling ‘fair trade’ – but genuinely looking into the state of the world – the coffee market – the things that are wrong with it – and the way they can help put it right.

I think that’s really powerful.

Along the way, they shared their passion with us. I caught it. I think others in the room caught it too.

Good coffee = great. Following one’s passion = great. Not just complaining about the state of the world but doing something about it = great. Fair trade = great.

Memphis Belle – 38 Dixon Street, Wellington – Phone: 021 244 8852

Flight Coffee

You can also buy packaged fair trade coffee from Trade Aid

No coffee! Oh!

Way too much coffee. But if it weren’t for the coffee, I’d have no identifiable personality whatsoever.
~ David Letterman

I work on one of the main streets in the Wellington CBD. Everyday I walk past people in suits with serious faces, striding up and down the streets, looking rather boring, bored, lost and/or sad (to me anyway)… till they spot a cafe or coffee cart. Then suddenly they regain a spring in their step, a light goes on in their eyes – and when they finally walk away with a cup of mojo clutched in their hand, they almost look like they’ve just won something. Coffee is a religion here.

Today I was walking past the coffee hero near my workplace, whipping up multiple takeaway cups of caffeine as usual in front of a rather worshipful corporate crowd… and I thought about a musical I once watched called ‘How to succeed in business without really trying.’

There’s a song they sing in there called ‘Coffee Break’. I’m sharing it with you this evening, just for fun, just ‘cos it’s Mid-Week Wednesday (woo!) :-)

There’s no coffee! No coffee! Oh!

If I can’t take my coffee break,
My coffee break, my coffee break …
If I can’t take my coffee break,
Something within me dies.
Lies down and something within me dies.

If I can’t make three daily trips
Where shining shrine
Benignly drips
And taste cardboard between my lips,
Something within me dies.
Lies down and something within me dies.

No coffee! No coffee! No coffee!
No coffee! No coffee! No coffee!
No coffee! No coffee!

That office light doesn’t have to be fluorescent;
I’ll get no pains in the head.
That office chair doesn’t have to be foam rubber;
So if I spread, so I spread;
But only one chemical substance
Gets out the lead–
Like she said:

If I can’t take my coffee break,
My coffee break, my coffee break …
If I can’t take my coffee break,
Gone is the sense of enterprise
All gone, and something within me dies.

No coffee! No coffee! No coffee!
No coffee! No coffee! No coffee!
No coffee! No coffee! No coffee!
No coffee!

If I can’t take my coffee break,
Somehow the soul no longer tries;
Somewhere I don’t metabolize;
Something within me …
Coffee or otherwise,
Coffee or otherwise,
Coffee or otherwise,
Something inside of me dies!