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Swiss Guards Enjoy Espresso

The Swiss Guards who are responsible for the safety and security of the Pope are now enjoying freshly brewed espresso on Jura coffee brewers. The Guards are celebrating their 500th anniversary and have refurbished their location, equipping their canteen with Jura Impressa X9 coffee brewers. In December, Eric Berchtold, business development manager, commercial represented Jura at the installation and training session in Vatican City.

Cup of Excellence Announces Member Data Base Search

The Cup of Excellence unveiled new membership benefits and an upgrade to its website which includes a comprehensive data base search feature.

The in depth data base of winning farm information compiled over the last few years will offer roasters easier access to high quality coffee farmers on a more long term basis. It is the only known data base search that focuses on competition winning coffee and offers a rich source of information by allowing members to search by key words, or for specifics such as altitude, variety, farm size, coffee growing area, international jury score, and cupping descriptions matched with the farm location and contact. Along with this search, a new online membership directory will also support the development of relationships among exemplary coffee buyers.

As in 2005, additional membership in the Cup of Excellence program also offers winning samples and auction registration for those interested in the seven competitions planned for the year. Beginning with Colombia in February, the program plans a competition and an auction for Honduras, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Bolivia, Brazil and a second Colombian program in the fall.

Membership fees vary from the community membership of $200 per year to the $10,000 lifetime membership. Several roasters and importers have supported the program at this highest level demonstrating its importance to their company. Bill Swoope, lifetime member from The Coffee Tree Roasters indicated that, As a smaller roaster, this program not only gives us easy access to exemplary award winning coffees, but by being involved in juries at the international competitions we also gain valuable insight and unmatched cupping experience on a large scale for single origin coffees.

PJs Coffee Battles New Orleans Wrath

Specialty coffee roaster/retailer, PJs Coffee, founded 27 years ago in New Orleans, kept its roasting facility operating through the hardships of the last three months with the help of an exceptionally dedicated roast master and his team.

As part of its unique roasting process, PJs keeps its beans in very small batches, thus guaranteeing freshness and contributing to an especially rich and bitter-less coffee. But after the damage inflicted on the roasting house, located on North Peters Street, and its coffee supplies, no one knew if the roasting facility would ever re-open. We went to the roasting site as soon as government officials said it was safe to return, said Felton Jones, PJs roastmaster. When we got there, we found a small batch of green coffee beans that was not damaged by the storm. The discovery was our call to action, and we devised a plan. After working with PJs Coffee for 10 years, there was no doubt in his mind that the small batch of green coffee beans was a sign. Cooking hot meals in an efficiency kitchen and using a file cabinet for a pantry, Jones and his production supervisor, Brian Beck, worked night and day in the facility in order to guarantee that it is business as usual for the PJs stores in New Orleans and around the country.

For the last two and a half months, Jones and Beck have dedicated their weekdays to maintaining PJs life support and their weekends to visiting family - which, at this time, live five to nine hours away from New Orleans.

The coffee chain originally lost no less than 30% of its stores in New Orleans, including Orleans, Jefferson and St. Tammany parishes. Within the past several months, more than 15 locations have reopened, while several more will open before the years end.

With each re-opened store, we have customers telling us how grateful they are to walk through our doors and be in a PJs again, said Nicole Hutson, PJs Coffee brand manager. If we can bring back any sense of stability and normalcy to our customers, even for the time it takes to enjoy a cup of coffee and a muffin, then weve succeeded.

Jones created a commemorative Preservation Blend to rally local communities around the preservation efforts. A portion of proceeds from the sale will be contributed to Katrina Relief efforts.

SCAE Plans Rwanda Trek

The Speciality Coffee Association is hosting a field trip to Rwanda, April 29 - May 6. Organized by the Rwanda Fine Coffees Association (RFA), the cost of the field trip is 975 Euros and includes: Six nights lodging at the Intercontinental hotel in Kigali, regional hotels on regional visits.; airport transfers, daily continental breakfast; all lunches & dinners Monday to Friday, internal transportation, All hotel taxes and service charges, rental of conference facilities and coffee visits. Airfare is not included.

The SCAE encourages its members to Come and celebrate the 100th anniversary of Arabica bourbon production and experience the fine coffees of the country of a thousand hills!

Contact Betty Attwood at the SCAE by Fax (+44 1306 743527) or E-mail (scae@btinternet.com) no later than March 3rd.

Tea & Coffee - February/March, 2006
Theta Ridge Coffee


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