The Good Stuff

Today was one of those days that roll around every couple of weeks. We’re getting low on coffee and it’s mid week so I have to decide what I’m going to buy from a list of specialty roasters and an ever changing list of available beans. I’ll check a my favorite roaster websites and those of roasters I’ve been wanting to try to see what’s currently available. It sounds easy but it brings on some anxiety. It takes a lot of time and I get impatient, I second guess, but I enjoy seeing what’s available and I always like to mix up our menu with new varietals, coffee from different regions and different roasters.  Mixing it up also seems to keep our palates fresh and the coffee drinking an ongoing exciting adventure.

Nearly two years ago I started putting together a list of specialty coffee roasters from around the country that I thought would be fun to visit while traveling. It just kept growing and lately I’ve begun adding roasters abroad.

roasters spreadsheetThis list was also inspired by visits we’ve paid to some of the small but important roasters within driving distance of home, roasters we could visit for tours and tastings and a couple of those trips have been documented in other posts in this blog. But having a list didn’t seem helpful enough, I really wanted to have an online map. It was one of those “wouldn’t it be great” ideas that I couldn’t stop thinking about. So I’ve tinkered with some simple mapping and what you see below and at the top is the result so far. You can zoom into major cities where there are a lot of roasters just like Google maps.

So what good is a map of specialty coffee roasters? For me, it gives you the chance to readily see roasters that are close to you and if you’re traveling, who’s roasting in that area. During one of my recent ordering days I thought there might be other people interested in what I find when I look at coffee ordering options so I decided to try to make it available to other coffee lovers and followers of the blog in the form of a biweekly newsletter that right now looks like this.

newsletter mugshot

This is not intended as a review, the tasting notes are those of the roaster pulled directly from their websites, it’s merely a list of coffees that look interesting. Something else may catch your eye or sound more interesting to you. My intention is to list a few roasters representing all regions of the country with each issue, rotating through the best, so anyone can find a roaster fairly close to them if shopping locally is important. Most roasters will ship USPS priority mail so second day delivery is pretty common. I will generally recommend roasters on the list who roast to order but that’s not always the case and I make a note of that in the database. My picks will always be single origin beans but of course each roaster will have blend options. Since they are seasonal and often sold in small lots, they are often only available for a short time. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve found an outstanding new coffee and tried to order more only to find it already sold out. That’s why the list will be updated regularly.

Take a look, tell me what you think!

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