Archive for the ‘Coffee Information’ Category

More Retailers Carrying Barrie House Coffee

Posted on: January 13th, 2015 by Andre Desomier No Comments

More and more retailers, grocers and coffees on the go places are bringing you Barrie House Coffee products. Be sure to check out our Coffee Spot finder to search for a location near you.

Barrie House Coffee Spot

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Another Good Reason to Enjoy Your Daily Coffee

Posted on: May 7th, 2014 by Andre Desomier No Comments

According to a Cornell University study, it is suggested that drinking coffee is good for your eyes. The study concludes a powerful antioxidant called Chlorogenic acid, found in coffee, can play a role in preventing age-related eye diseases and the degeneration of eyesight. This study was published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

Suggested Articles:
New York Daily News:Coffee may be good for your eyes, study suggests
Star Gazette:Cornell study: Coffee is good for your eyes

Barrie House Coffee Intensity Meter

Posted on: October 22nd, 2013 by Andre Desomier No Comments

Barrie House has adopted a coffee intensity meter as a way to inform customers of the end taste experience of our coffees and help them make selecting an item easier.

The intensity of a coffee is determined by the degree of roasting, its body and its bitterness; but bears no relation to the percentage of caffeine in the coffee.

The Barrie House scale ranges from 10 to 3 (we don’t roast any coffees below 3). Below are the intensities associated with some of our coffees:

Intensity meter 10 Espresso Roast

Intensity meter 9 French Roast, Italian Roast

Intensity meter 8 Sumatra Kopi GR-1, Summer Blend

Intensity meter 7Colombian Reserve; Costa Rican Tarrazu

Intensity meter 6 Jammin Jamaican, French Vanilla,
Ultimate Hazelnut (All our flavored coffees)

Intensity meter 5Breakfast Blend, Donut Shop Blend

Intensity meter 4Guatemala Guaya’b

Intensity meter 3 Decaf Fair Trade Organic Classic

Coffee and Acid Levels

Posted on: May 24th, 2013 by Andre Desomier No Comments

In chemistry, pH is a measure of the activity of the (solvated) hydrogen ion p[H], which measures the hydrogen ion concentration. This is closely related to, and is often written as, pH Pure water which has a pH very close to 7 at 77 °F. Solutions with a pH less than 7 are said to be acidic and solutions with a pH greater than 7 are basic or alkaline. The pH scale is traceable to a set of standard solutions whose pH is established by international agreement. Primary pH standard values are determined using a concentration cell with transference, by measuring the potential difference between a hydrogen electrode and a standard electrode such as the silver chloride electrode. Measurement of pH for aqueous solutions can be done with a glass electrode and a pH meter, or using indicators.

The term Acidity is often used as a sensory term to describe flavor profiles for coffee, tea, wine and many other culinary ingredients. This term shouldn’t be confused with Acid level measures in pH.

PH Scale

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Use Coffee Grounds In Your Garden

Posted on: May 3rd, 2013 by Andre Desomier No Comments

Coffee grounds are an excellent addition to your garden. The grounds have a 20 to 1 ratio of nitrogen to carbon and perfect for growing plants like tomatoes. There are a few ways you can use coffee grounds in your garden.

Add to your compost. Coffee grounds speed up the decomposing process in compost. Add two teaspoons of lime for every 5 kilograms of coffee grounds. Don’t use more than a quarter of the heap as coffee grounds and keep the size of the heap small.

Add grounds to plants that need a pH between 3.0 and 5.0. Adding coffee grounds to hydrangeas is good for blue blooms. Blueberries, cranberries and citrus fruits also like coffee added to their soil. Other coffee-loving plants include camellias, gardenias, rhododendrons, and vireyas.

Use it as mulch and add the coffee grounds directly into your garden as a mulch and soil conditioner. Add a pinch of lime to ensure that the pH is adequately balanced.

Coffee grounds are great in deterring pests such as slugs and snails. They don’t tend to like coffee grounds sprinkled around plants.


The Art of Roasting

Posted on: January 30th, 2013 by admin No Comments

Roasting unleashes a coffee’s potential; it is  part science part art and lots of good judgment. Roasting requires experience, concentration and precision. The art of roasting is akin to an artist’s signature on a painting, as roasting imprint the roaster’s signature on the coffee.

How bright or muted will a particular coffee be at different roast colors? How much chiaroscuro should the roaster impart to the coffee core flavor? These questions and many more are part of a roasters daily life.

Roasting with too much heat makes the beans too dark with too much caffeol (a fragrant oil produced by roasting when burnt); not enough and the caffeol is not precipitated.

Green coffee beans feel like rounded pebbles and are very hard but after roasting they become much softer and can be easily cracked by a light squeeze. They grow much larger as well, anywhere between 50-80% depending on the beans size, density and the roast color after roasting.

There are many different kinds of coffee roasters.  A classic type of roaster is the Drum Roaster which has a rotating metal drum operated by hot surfaces with heated air passing through the rotating and tumbling beans. Achieving the right balance between the conduction and convention during the roasting process is no small task but is one which is very rewarding.

The second most common roaster is the Thermal Roaster.  This type operates strictly by convection where the beans typically float on a bed of hot air and avoid touching hot surfaces. This type of roaster permits a very clean expression of the coffee flavor profile though it lacks the dimensionality that is produced in drum roasters–which impart a slight roast variation between surface and interior–achieving more depth and highlighting acidity.

During the roasting process the green coffee beans are roasted at temperatures ranging from 350º F – 460º F for 8 to 18 minutes, depending on the degree of roast required and the beans’ size and density.

During the roasting process moisture is lost from the beans, you can hear this happening, the queue is the distinct audible pops the beans makes.

Pyrolysis during roasting is a process in which starches are converted into sugar, proteins are broken down and the entire cellular structure of the bean is altered.

The roasting process develops a fine coffee’s complexity of over 600 flavor components and precipitates the release of caffeol which is the essence of the coffee we enjoy in the cup. Since it is also volatile and water soluble, once the coffee beans have been roasted, the flavor can be damaged by moisture, light and especially oxygen.


What is Soluble Coffee?

Posted on: January 2nd, 2013 by admin No Comments

Soluble or ‘instant’ coffee was invented in 1901 by Japanese-American chemist Satori Kato of Chicago but was not marketed commercially until 1938. Since then quality and diversity have grown dramatically. Soluble coffee has a number of advantages including speed of preparation, lower shipping weight and volume, long shelf life and being relatively inexpensive.

Soluble coffee is manufactured, just like any other coffee, from ground beans and is commercially prepared by either freeze-drying or spray drying methods. The first stage involves the preparation of a coffee concentrate from which the water is removed, either by heat, known as spray dried, or by freezing, to produce a soluble powder or granules. During the process of dehydration, the coffee essences may be lost, but these are captured and returned to the processed coffee.

Instant coffee is available in powder or granulated formats contained in multiple packaging solutions. The strength of the yielded beverage is determined, by adding more or less powder to the water.  Soluble coffee is a convenient way for preparing iced coffee as it instantly dissolves even in cold water.

Soluble Coffee Production

The green coffee beans are first roasted to bring out their flavor and aromas. Once roasted the beans are then finely ground. Grinding is performed in order to allow the coffee to be put in solution with water for the drying stage.  Once roasted and ground, the coffee is dissolved in water. This stage is called extraction. Hot water is added and this concentrates the coffee solution to about 15–30% coffee by mass. If required this may be further concentrated before the drying process begins by either vacuum evaporation or freeze concentration.

Freeze Drying Soluble Coffee

The principle of freeze drying is the removal of water by sublimation. Although it is sometimes more expensive then Spray Drying, it generally results in a higher-quality product.

  1. The ground wet coffee granules are rapidly frozen.
  2. Frozen coffee is placed in the drying chamber.
  3. A vacuum is created within the chamber.
  4. The drying chamber is warmed.
  5. The previously condensed frozen water in the coffee granules expands to ten times its previous volume. The removal of this water vapor from the chamber is critical component in the freeze-drying process.
  6. The freeze-dried granules are removed from the chamber and ready to be packaged.

Spray Drying

Spray drying is preferred to freeze drying in some cases because of its economy, short drying time, and usefulness when dealing with such a heat-sensitive product and the fine, rounded particles it produces.

Spray drying produces tiny spherical particles by using nozzle atomization through high speed rotating wheels. The use of spray wheels requires that the drying chambers have a wide radius to avoid the atomized droplets collecting onto the drying chamber walls. One drawback with spray drying is that the particles it produces are too fine to be used effectively by the consumer; they must first be either steam-fused or by belt agglomeration to produce particles of suitable size.

Freshly Roasted Stale Coffee?

Posted on: January 2nd, 2013 by admin No Comments

When we think of coffee freshness, we tend to gravitate to the flavor of fresh roasted-coffee.  More often than not, you will taste the traditional flat flavor of “stale” coffee in most homes or businesses. There is another aspect “Stale coffee flavor“ that isn’t mentioned often enough, that is the flavor of staleness originating from the green beans mishandling prior to roasting.

The taste of truly fresh harvested and then roasted coffee will open your taste buds to a new world of coffee flavors and will revolutionize your perception of quality coffee and the true meaning of fresh coffee.  Barrie House Coffee is at the leading edge of setting standards for how green coffee is sourced, transported and stored leading to truly great all around fresh coffee.

Causes of green coffee staleness?

After coffee beans are dried and uniformly processed to the accurate degree of moisture content, they contain the maximum amount of volatile aromatic oils locked within their cellular structure and their flavor is at their peak.  Next to nothing has ever been done to preserve this highpoint instead it has been all about the mere acceptability of a commodity fulfillment.

Green coffee is shipped and stored in woven jute or sisal bags and most of the commodity green coffee purchased is stored and circulated for over a year before it will be roasted, this in turn devolves the green coffee that is exposed to oxygen, environment conditions and to the bags structure themselves.

What characterizes green coffee staleness?

First is the evaporation of the coffees’ aromatic oils, these are the core of any fine coffee’s unique flavor signature. The next to go is sweetness, while lignin, which forms the cell walls of the coffee bean and is the chief non-carbohydrate constituent of wood, ages and imparts an ever-increasing flavor of aged cedar wood. This is the common flavor style found in most specialty coffee establishments today.

How to solve the raw green coffee staleness problem?

Solving the raw green coffee staleness problem requires changes by roasters purchasing and handling procedures, as well for an ongoing education by all parties involved in the coffee sourcing & selling supply chain of their consumers, on fine coffee and the availability windows for it in its peak flavor.

The final step to producing a harvest-fresh coffee experience is proper storage and smart buying techniques combined with extra scrutiny at the cupping approval level.  As Latin American and East African coffees age, from the time they were harvested last winter, to the coming winter, the difference between a well stored and sourced coffee and all others widens.

We firmly believe the added labor and cost is well worth it and our methodology allows our customers to enjoy nearly a year-round full appreciation of harvest-fresh coffees.

As consumers begin seeking the exotic coffee flavor spectrum of single-origin coffees, a new world of regional coffee offerings will emerge. We believe that by keeping these coffees as limited time offers while at their peak only will empower the craftsmanship of farmers through economic sustainability with dignity by allowing them to sell their coffees at a premium and not as a commodity driven product.

The Beans for Flavored Coffee

Posted on: January 2nd, 2013 by admin No Comments

The type of coffee bean used to make flavored coffee can greatly impact the taste of the finished product. Green coffee beans contain different compounds which contribute to their flavor, including sugars and other carbohydrates, mineral salts, organic acids and aromatic oils.

A bean’s flavor is a function of many factors such as its specie, strain, growth area, climatic conditions, latitude and altitude, soil, processing and finally the roast level. The name of the coffee beans usually indicates their country of origin, along with additional information, such as the region, country or the classification grade of the beans, or the roast degree in commonly acknowledged terms. For instance, “Sumatra Lintong” denotes a specific growing region (Lintong) in Sumatra; “Kenya AA” designates AA beans, the highest grade of beans from Kenya; and “French Roast” is a blend of beans which are roasted very dark in the “French style.”

Flavored coffees can comprise of one kind of bean, like Kenya AA, which has distinctive taste characteristics of high winey acidity that can further enhance and empower certain chocolaty flavors if used with flavoring. Other flavorings may be elevated by a blend of beans from various regions designed to project a unique flavor base.

If flavoring is added to beans which have too mild a roast, the coffee lacks significant flavor characteristics and a flat-tasting coffee results. If the roast is too dark the flavoring is overshadowed by the taste of the beans. For example, a french vanilla flavor will be lost on a French Roast bean because the robust quality of the bean will overwhelm the sweet creamy tones of french vanilla. The perfect roast color for flavored coffee is medium to brown.

The most common coffee beans used for flavored coffees are Arabica, as they are characteristically milder and more flavorful than the harsher Robusta beans.

Flavoring Essence Oils

Posted on: January 2nd, 2013 by admin 7 Comments

Flavoring oils are mostly combinations of natural and synthetic flavor chemicals which are compounded by professional flavor chemists.

Natural oils used in flavored coffees are extracted from a variety of sources such as vanilla beans, cocoa beans, and various nuts and berries. Cinnamon, clove, and chicory are also used in a variety of coffee flavors.

Synthetic flavor agents are chemicals which are manufactured on a commercial basis. Flavor chemists blend many such oils to achieve specific flavor combinations. While other food flavors may be composed of nine or 10 ingredients, coffee flavors require up to 80 different compounds. An ideal flavor should mask some of the harsh notes of the coffee yet not interfere with its aromatic characteristics. Virtually any taste can be reproduced. Most consumers prefer coffee flavors with sweet creamy notes.

The pure flavor compounds described above are highly concentrated and must be diluted in a solvent to allow the blending of multiple oils and easy application to the beans. Common solvents include water, alcohol, propylene glycol, and fractionated vegetable oils. These solvents are generally volatile chemicals that are removed from the beans by drying. The current flavoring essences technology uses stable solvents which leave the beans with a glossy sheen and longer lasting flavor.

The flavor chemicals and the solvents used in flavors must not only be approved for use in foods, but they must also not adversely react with the packaging material and the processing equipment with which they come into contact.