Welcome to Badgett's Coffee eJournal
"All the Coffee That's Fit to Print"(tm)
Issue No. 63 May 3, 2002
In This Issue:
2. Some Words from Our Sponsors
3. How to Choose the Right Grinder
4. A Daily Dose of Wisdom from the Rebbe
5. A Tale of Woe
6. The Kona Tradition by C B. Smith
8. Starbucks in the News
9. Coffee Kids
10. Links to My Friends
Please visit the new BCE website at its new address,
www.badgettcoffee.com. You will find many new features: Past
Issues, Links to Our Friends, CoffeeWantAds, Affiliates, and
more to come. You are welcome to add your coffee-related website
link and to post an ad for anything coffee-related in
Check out the Amazon ad in the Affiliates section, where you'll
find two books no coffee person should be without: "Home Coffee
Roasting" by Kenneth Davids for $11.17, and "Uncommon Grounds"
by Mark Pendergrast for $12.60. You can help pay the costs of
BCE by shopping through my website, since BCE will make a little
commission on your purchases. If you're going to buy from
Amazon.com, why not reach them through BCE? We both win.
Lots of changes going on at BCE. See my Tale of Woe below.
One result of having to start over on a new domain and website
is that I am taking a hard look at where we are and where we are
going with BCE. One complaint I have received often (in various
forms) is about the format. "Too long!" "It's too hard to find
the article I am interested in." "Too plain; it's like reading a
100 year-old newspaper. Put some pictures and color in it."
I do listen and I am investigating all the possibilities. One
format that I'm investigating is similar to a newspaper website,
such as cnn.com or jpost.com, where the articles are briefly
listed with the first sentence and a link to the complete
article. I would then use BCE email to direct you to the
website. You could then do a search on the website for past
articles. One of my favorite coffee websites is
www.IneedCoffee.com. Michael Smith does a great job with his
website and newsletter.
Please send your comments on format to me. I want to improve BCE
and I need your help.
A Cup of Joy: http://www.castlemountains.net/flashmar/A_Cup_Of_Joy.swf
My goal with this journal is to promote good coffee. I want to
learn, educate, and entertain. I publish every other Friday via
email and readers include coffee consumers, home roasters,
coffee geeks, retailers, growers, roasters, equipment dealers,
and anyone else who shares our passion for our most wonderful
beverage. If you want to learn more about the fascinating world
of coffee, this is the place. I don't sell anything and
subscription is free.
If you want to advertise here or submit an article please
contact me for the ad rates.
Past Issues (1-57) may be viewed at www.badgettcoffee.com
DISCLAIMER: All information contained here is obtained by
Badgett's Coffee eJournal from sources believed to be accurate
and reliable. Because of the possibility of human and mechanical
error as well as other factors, neither Badgett's Coffee
eJournal nor its publisher, Robert L. Badgett, is responsible
for any errors or omissions. All information is provided "as is"
without warranty of any kind.
To subscribe or unsubscribe, click here: www.badgettcoffee.com
If you have problems with subscribing or unsubscribing, please
contact me directly. mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
2. Some Words From Our Sponsors
Custom Imprinted Coffee Mugs
Fast Delivery - Competitive Pricing
For Details Call Doxpress: 800-999-3676
"There is still no cure for the common birthday." John Glenn
3. How to Choose the Right Grinder
Why Grind Your Coffee?
The quick answer is freshness. If you're going to buy
gourmet coffee or espresso beans, you want to get the most out
of them. We recommend grinding your coffee just prior to
brewing it in order to get the freshest tasting, most aromatic
coffee possible. There's nothing quite like tasting and smelling
a fresh ground hot cup of coffee made from fresh ground beans!
The ideal grinding practice is to:
1) Grind immediately before you brew.
2) Achieve the finest grind possible that won't clog the
paper filter, or release too much sediment into the cup, if
using a press pot. The purpose of grinding is to effectively
increase the surface area of the coffee exposed to the water so
more of the flavor oils can enter the brew. Fine grinds result
in more flavorful, economic coffee. If it's so fine that it
produces undesirable sediment in the cup, or the brewing time is
lengthened because the paper filter clogs, you have gone too
3) Use a good grinder. The recommended grinding method
available to the home coffee brewer are burr grinding devices.
Although slightly more expensive, it will pay for itself in the
long run. An even grind will provide for an even extraction of
the oils from the coffee. Ill-proportioned grind will cause some
of the coffee to over-extract, and some to under-extract. Over-
extracted coffee will taste bitter and overly pungent. Under-
extracted will taste weak and thin.
There are two basic types of grinders, the Blade Grinder
and the Burr Grinder
The most common type of grinder you can find at your local
household supply store is the blade grinder. The blade grinder
has a motorized base with a container on top where you place the
beans. It has a small barrel with sharp metal blades that spin
at very fast speeds. The beans are chopped repeatedly until the
desired consistency is reached. The fineness of the grind is
determined by the length of time the beans are ground. These
grinders can produce coarse, medium, and fine coffee grind, but
are not recommended for espresso makers.
Advantages: They are usually less expensive, easy to use,
and are adequate for various coffee makers, such as drip and
pour-through coffee makers and coffee press pots.
Disadvantages: The coffee granules vary in size from rocky
and coarse to a very fine powder. Powder clogs your coffee
filter and slows the passage of water so that it extracts too
many bitter compounds. Rock granules allow the water to pass
through too quickly, not allowing the coffee to release all the
potential contents into the brew. Coffee grounds tend to burn in
a blade grinder due to the high heat produced during the
chopping process, causing you to lose some of the flavor you
wanted to achieve by grinding your own beans in the first place.
The burr grinder is the most highly recommended grinder
for the coffee brewing process. The burr grinder utilizes a
wheel with burrs molded into it. The wheel spins at a very high
speed and the coffee beans fall through the grinding chute, a
few beans at a time, where they are then crushed between the
grinding wheel and a stationary grinding surface.
Advantages: Burr grinders produce a more consistent,
uniform grind of beans, regardless of how many or few beans you
feed it, and regardless of the grind setting you choose. This
means that you end up with an even bed of ground coffee for hot
water to pass through. Another advantage of the burr grinder is
that it only generates a little heat during the grinding
process, keeping the beans cool and preventing the loss of
flavorful aromatics that would otherwise evaporate if exposed to
heat. Burr grinders vary widely in cost, but they're well worth
There are two basic types of burr grinders:
* Wheel Type Burr Grinder: The less expensive of the two,
the wheel type burr grinder is a good general-purpose grinder
for a variety of brewing methods. These are relatively
inexpensive to purchase (between $40.00 to $100.00) and offer a
better grind consistency than the blade grinder. Many burr
grinders feature a timer and provide a way to set the amount of
coffee you want ground (from 2 to 12 cups) and will shut off
when it reaches the correct amount of ground coffee needed.
Disadvantages: They are usually noisier than the blade or
conical grinder, and the chute sometimes clogs when oily coffee
beans are used. They can also develop a static charge, which can
cause the grounds to stick to the inside of the catcher. This is
easily remedied by removing the catcher after the coffee has
been ground and lightly tapping the catcher on the counter to
loosen the grounds before pouring them into your maker. They are
not recommended for grinding beans for espresso.
* Conical Burr Grinder: The burrs in the conical burr
grinder are shaped like two mating cones; the grinding teeth
facing toward each burr set. The coned shaped wheel spins at
very slow speeds. The coffee beans fall through the grinding
chute, which are then crushed between the grinding wheel and a
stationary grinding surface. The advantages over the wheel type
burr grinder are that one cone spins slower producing a better
grind consistency, virtually no burning of the grounds, little
static charge, and less clogging. They are also better for oily
or flavored coffees beans. Although these are more expensive,
they are a better choice if you are planning to grind beans for
an espresso maker.
Disadvantage: The main disadvantage of the conical burr
grinder is that it usually costs more than the wheel type burr
grinder. Costs generally run $150.00 and up.
VISIT US TODAY
Flying Bean Gourmet Coffee & Espresso
Toll Free 1-888-381-1265
"Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without
losing your temper or your self-confidence." Robert Frost
4. A Daily Dose of Wisdom from the Rebbe
-Words and condensation by Tzvi Freeman
What You See
If you see what needs to be repaired and how to repair it, then
you have found a piece of the world that G-d has left for you to
complete. But if you only see what is wrong and how ugly it is,
then it is yourself that needs repair.
Brought to you by http://www.chabadonline.com/magazine
"There are many ways of going forward, but only one way of
standing still." Franklin D. Roosevelt
5. A Tale of Woe
New website, new website address. Why would anyone want to make
such changes? Believe me, I did not want to change anything, but
through a series of calamitous events I lost my domain
(badgett.net) and with it, my email address.
It started when I tried to access my website April 21 and could
not get it. I thought my server was down temporarily so I wasn't
too concerned. I found out later that my domain had expired! I
had failed to contact them with my change of email and they were
unable to let me know of the expiration. I called the domain
host and discovered that I had to wait until the domain purged
from their system before I could re-acquire it. I checked
several times a day for the next week to register it and then on
Friday I discovered that the domain was registered to a company
in Hong Kong. I never dreamed that anyone would want my domain.
I was really disappointed.
I have tried to contact the Hong Kong company several times,
both by email and by telephone, but have not been successful. I
want to discuss getting the domain back. I have worked very hard
for two years to establish the presence of BCE and the domain,
badgett.net, on the Internet. Many fine websites have links to
the old domain and I am asking them to change the url so the
link will work. If you tried to access my website or send email
since April 21, now you know why it didn't work.
A lesson for everyone is to make sure your domain is registered
and renewed. Do it yourself! It is too important a task to
depend on someone else. If you're not sure of your registration,
go to www.namesecure.com and enter your domain. Then click "Who
Owns it?" to get registration info.
"Draw a crazy picture,
Write a nutty poem,
Sing a mumble-gumble song,
Whistle through your comb.
Do a loony-goony dance
'Cross the kitchen floor,
Put something silly in the world
That ain't been there before."
6. The Kona Tradition by C B. Smith
Another day begins for the Kona coffee farmer. While cardinals
start their song and morning breezes flow down from Mauna Loa
(elevation 13,333 feet), the farmer grabs a cup of his best brew
and walks out the door into history.
Kona coffee refers to coffee that is grown only in the North and
South Districts of Kona on Hawaii Island (also known as "The Big
Island"). These Kona Districts cover an area of about 20 miles
long and 2 miles wide, on the west coast of the island. The
North Kona area is on the slopes of Mt. Hualalai, while South
Kona is on the slopes of Mauna Loa.
At last count, there were fewer than 600 farms growing coffee in
the Kona Districts. While there are several farms over 65 acres
each, the majority are much smaller and average about 3 acres.
Only these farms produce Kona coffee. Coffee that is grown on
other parts of the island or on other islands within the
Hawaiian Chain may not call their product Kona coffee.
Kona Coffee, a Coffea arabica -var. typica, is generally
acknowledged as one of the two most highly valued coffees in the
world and it was brought, in 1829, to Hawaii Island by
missionary and teacher Samuel Ruggles. Ruggles brought coffee
as an ornamental plant from the island of Oahu where Don
Francisco de Paula Marin is credited with introducing the very
first plants in 1813.
The Coffee immediately thrived in the optimum weather pattern of
mauka (mauka* mauka* - a Hawaiian term for "towards the
mountains"*) Kona, where sunny mornings and an afternoon cloud
cover continue to be the norm. Kona's wet summers and dry
winters is the exact climate the Coffea arabica plant prefers.
Initially, the coffee was simply consumed locally or sold to
passing whaling ships. In 1845 the first exports to California
began an industry!
The early years of the Kona Coffee market were exciting. Farmers
were encouraged by landowners to begin coffee farms, although
some early land leases to the farmers, demanded as much as half
the crop in payment.
In 1900, however, the final tariff for sugar cane shipped from
Hawaii to the United States was removed , and the development of
new sugar cane lands was enthusiastically encouraged by
Territory of Hawaii administrators. Coffee was quickly relegated
to a secondary position and some acreage was even plowed under.
Although the original farmers in 1893 were Japanese contract
coffee laborers brought directly from Japan to work coffee, no
coffee plantation begun in the late 1890s was financially
Surviving the mercurial nature of the marketplace was and
continues to be difficult for Kona coffee. - In 1999 (and in
2002), for example, the price for a pound of green coffee is
about $11/lb. - In 1898, the price for a pound of green was
A 1918 frost in Brazil, the world's largest coffee producer,
caused the price of green Kona to rise to $0.28/lb., but the
1929 US Depression caused the prices to fall again. By 1940, the
price of a pound of green Kona was down to only $0.08/lb. Insect
pests and other organisms were also problems.
A US Department of Agriculture report published in 1974,
cautioned that only 11 percent of the full-time Kona coffee
farmers were under 55 years old and the report also suggested
that the coffee industry was in jeopardy of dying out. It was
simply impossible to be full-time farmers of Kona coffee and
make ends meet because of unstable prices, and it was the older,
more settled group who could afford full time farming.
Over twenty years later, thanks to farmer determination, a loyal
following and the natural tenacity of the plant, Kona coffee
cultivation now has a more varied mix of farmers and the crop is
in demand. Many people seeking alternate lifestyles during the
1970s, discovered the pleasures of Kona and the farming life,
eventually purchasing land leases and this mix of real
individuals now thrive as Kona coffee farmers.
Some current farmers are former university agriculture graduates
who worked for large agribusinesses and found there was too much
politics and not enough agriculture in what they were doing.
Many more recent farmers wanted a simpler life. There are also
continuing multi-generational families of Japanese, Filipinos,
Portuguese, Hawaiians and Haoles* (Haoles * Hawaiian term for
Caucasians, White foreigners) who continue to enjoy the family
farm life as a Kona coffee farmer.
According to the Hawaiian Experiment Station- Bulletin #66,
published in 1932, "with the exception of land rental and
fertilizer, the entire cost of coffee as it is sold to the
mill...is represented in hand labor." Nothing has changed and
that formidable amount of "hand labor" contributes to the high
value and excellent quality placed on the taste of Kona Coffee.
From September until February, the Kona coffee farmer is
singularly focused on picking and processing the ripe red coffee
cherry. Kona coffee will always be only hand picked because the
slope of the land is severe (20% or more in places) and the
rocky condition of the ground does not lend itself to machinery.
Kona coffee is selectively hand picked because immature or over
ripe beans would ruin the delicate mellow flavor. Because the
random spring flowering of the coffee plants causes a random
ripening of the coffee beans during the harvest, each coffee
tree on a farm will be visited from 4-7 times by pickers during
the picking season that year..
There can be from 250-400 coffee cherries per pound depending on
their size. A good coffee picker can pick from 200-300 pounds
per day and be paid in 1999 statistics $0.40/lb for the cherry
or ripe coffee. (The record for one picker for one day in 1997
was a remarkable 825 pounds from sunrise to sunset!) Each pound
of cherry represents only 1/7 of a pound of dark roasted coffee.
At the end of a picking day ---and the succession of picking
days by only a few people on a farm can last 3 weeks---the
farmer gathers all the burlap bags filled with coffee cherry,
sews the filled bag closed, at the very top - with an
upholstery needle threaded with grocery string -and then heads
for the pulping mill.
Most farmers pay to have their cherry pulped and dried at a
processing place. Water is not municipally supplied in mauka
Kona and during the harvest, the weather tends to be dry so it
would be very hard to have enough water to process your coffee,
unless you went out and trucked water home, on a daily basis..
Some farmers continue to sell their coffee at the cherry level,
but more farmers are now selling further along the process.
The assortment of farm vehicles at the pulping mill is indeed
colorful with WWII Jeeps, trusty and rusty 4 X 4's with
nonfunctioning odometers/license plates and the occasional newer
pickup truck. Sometimes only a single bag emerges from the trunk
of the family car.
At the pulping mill, the skin of the coffee bean is pulped off
and the beans are soaked in water to remove the sugary pulp or
mucilage still adhering to the coffee bean. The processing,
known as wet fermentation takes from 12-36 hours to accomplish.
The coffee beans are then washed clear with pure volcanic
aquifer water- some of the purest water in the world and now the
beans will be dried to the parchment stage. For best results,
the beans are laid out on the hoshidana *(hoshidanahoshidana* -
a Japanese name for the above- ground drying platforms) so that
Kona's warm sun and gentle breezes will dry the precious beans
to the correct moisture level.
The drying beans are watched closely and raked often for uniform
drying. The hoshidana is cleverly constructed so that at the
first sign of a rain shower, a roof can be quickly drawn over
the entire platform, protecting the beans. Some processors elect
to use forced hot air in large containers to speed up the drying
beans, and many purists claim they can actually taste the
difference between sun-dried and kiln-dried. The connoisseur
avers that the sun-dried beans maintain more of the delicate
mellow flavor associated with Kona's coffee. This is the
*parchment* stage which had followed follows the *cherry* stage.
Most coffee is kept stored at the parchment level. When the
farmer wants green coffee, he takes his parchment bags to the
green or dry miller and the coffee beans then have their outer
skin or parchment (colored) removed. Next the beans can be
graded according to size and defects, or kept in an "Estate
Grade", and they can also be State of Hawaii Certified as to
Origin and Grade by Hawaii Agriculture Inspectors. Green coffee
may be stored in a climate-controlled atmosphere for up to a
year. Some experts claim the flavor is enhanced by storage while
others say fresh is best.
When a farmer wants a roast, he takes his green coffee to the
roaster and gets it roasted and .....twenty-five pounds of green
results in about 20 pounds of dark roasted whole beans.
Work continues on the coffee farm during the non-harvest season
as well. From March through September, the Kona coffee farmer
carefully cultivates his crop. Pruning off the older, less
productive branches in the spring, allows the new shoots to
begin their growth cycle. The farmer must also fertilize his
many hundreds of coffee trees.
Three other very important jobs happen during this period. The
farmer must visually anticipate and carefully select the most
promising shoots from each coffee tree for the next few year's
production. This is quite a science and can make the difference
in crop production. The new growth of early summer needs to be
pared down to produce future efficient yields. Rats need to be
actively discouraged from eating the sweet mature beans. Weed
control in the lush and fertile summer fields needs to be
constantly managed. Simply said, a wild coffee tree has a far
smaller yield than a cultivated one .
Much of the mauka Kona coffee acreage has been continuously
cultivated since the Hawaiians first farmed the lands in
prehistoric Hawaii (pre -1778). Stone walls built by the
agricultural Hawaiians to farm their own food crops, still
remain on much on the land. In many cases a bulldozer or tractor
has never touched or compacted the coffee land and the volcanic
and organic soil remains porous which is what Kona coffee enjoys
Despite the year round labor, Kona coffee farmers love what they
do and feel privileged to be able to work outdoors in the
extremely pleasant subtropical Kona climate cultivating a
product that is famous among coffee drinking societies through
out the world. The entire Districts of North and South Kona
remain beautiful in no small part because of the lush green
slopes covered in old growth coffee- some farms made up of trees
over 100 years old.
NO REPRODUCTION OF THIS WITHOUT PERMISSION OF THE AUTHOR which
is easily gotten, but please email email@example.com or
C B. Smith Smithfarms, PO Box 248, Honaunau, HI 96726
Rabbi Pliskin's Daily Lift
Daily Lift #6 Daily Lift #11 Believe In People
Believe in people and you will influence them to believe in
Your belief needs to be based on reality -- so develop an eye
for noticing sparks of potential in others. Be enthusiastic in
selling a person to himself.
(From Rabbi Pliskin's book Kindness)
Post your CoffeeWantAds FREE for the world to see. Buy, sell, or
promote anything coffee-related. Beans, equipment, parts, jobs,
advice; this is the place to promote! CoffeeWantAds is a free
classified ad service and is for both commercial and residential
coffee-related ads. You may post your ad by going to
www.badgettcoffee.com and hit the link to CoffeeWantAds. Most
folks do not like wordy ad copy so keep your ad simple, and like
a ristretto, short and sweet. You may include an image and a
website url. You may also password protect your ad and change it
as often as you like. What a price! What a deal!
"Look at everything as though you were seeing it for the first
time or the last time. Then your time on earth will be filled
with glory." Betty Smith
8. Starbucks in the News
"A man and woman robbed a busy Starbucks early yesterday morning
and wound up serving coffee through the drive-up window for at
least 30 minutes to make additional cash. They then waited until
business slowed enough to make a getaway." For the rest of the
article, go to link:
Starbucks now has 5,368 stores and plans to add 1,200 more
during their current fiscal year. Their sales for the first
quarter of this year were $783 million, which earned $32.1
million in profit. That's a lot of milk!
"The most likely way for the world to be destroyed, most experts
agree, is by accident. That's where we come in; we're computer
professionals. We cause accidents." Nathaniel Borenstein
9. Coffee Kids
COFFEE KIDS has helped thousands of children, women, and men in
coffee-producing regions in Mexico and Central America to
improve the quality of their lives and build more sustainable
communities. Founded by coffee roaster Bill Fishbein in 1988,
Coffee Kids is an international nonprofit 501(c)(3)
organization. Our staff works with local non-governmental
community organizations in Latin America to create education,
health-care, training, and microenterprise programs for coffee
farmers and their families. Our projects respect the cultural
integrity of our local partners, foster independence, and
promote long-term self-sufficiency.
What is Coffee Kids' mission?
To improve the quality of life for children and families who
live in coffee-growing communities around the world.
Who founded Coffee Kids and when?
Coffee Kids was founded in 1988 by Bill Fishbein, the owner of
Coffee Exchange, a specialty coffee roaster and retailer in
Providence, RI. That year, Bill had traveled to Guatemala and
saw first-hand the connection between coffee farming and
poverty. He created Coffee Kids as a way for coffee businesses
and coffee consumers to give something back to the families who
"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through
experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened,
ambition inspired, and success achieved." Helen Keller
10. Links to My Friends
Visit the links page on our website to get the latest links to
both coffee related and unrelated sites of interest. You may now
add your link at www.badgettcoffee.com. Check it out. You might
find some old friends and make some new ones.
"The fireworks begin today. Each diploma is a lighted match.
Each one of you is a fuse." Ed Koch
Tell me what you think. What do you want more of..less of...what
would you change, add, or delete?
ISSN: 1534-4614 - Library of Congress, Washington D.C., USA
This journal was made from 100% post-consumer, recycled, non-polluting,
non-trashcan filling electrons.
(c) Copyright 2002 Robert L. Badgett. All Rights Reserved.