What’s the point of Barista Championships?

I know what you’re thinking: this title seems a bit rich coming from someone who has benefitted from being a barista champion. There’s been a good amount of conversation spurred on by Pete Licata’s excellent blog post on the subject. Listening to Baca and Truby chat about it on the latest Cat & Cloud podcast… Continue reading

Quick Hack: Getting Rid of Static

I made a quick video about getting rid of static when you’re grinding coffee. I hope you try it and like it, but I do want to talk quickly about attribution of ideas.

I think it is important to try and attribute ideas whenever you’re sharing someone else’s work, eve if you feel you’re adding or innovating on top of it. In this case, I attributed to the person I’d learned it from (jepy) without realising that this is a well-known technique dating back to 2005 and alt.coffee – the newsgroup that so many interesting ideas in coffee came from! I learned this when someone shared a Home Barista post I somehow missed, created back in 2012.

It’s a nice reminder that most new ideas are old ideas (I think this is going to prove painfully true in the next phase of speciality coffee worldwide – that’s for an upcoming post though) and that it doesn’t hurt to try a little harder when researching where things come from. Thanks to all who quickly corrected me, and shared the RDT (Ross Droplet Techniques) origins. (Though I have to say I prefer the spoon handle method of adding water over adding droplets directly to the beans…)

Enjoy the video!

Coffee isn’t cool

It’s easy to let an idea take root in your thinking. It feels, for a moment, insightful and perhaps even useful. What happens then is most likely a case of confirmation bias – you begin to see things that confirm your idea, that support and strength your particular insight. In my case, it is the… Continue reading

The best of jimseven book is here!

A little over a year ago I asked on here if people were interested in a best of jimseven.com book. Enough people said yes that I thought it was worth pursuing and over the last year I’ve been working on turning this into a reality.

I’ve invested my time and money and the book is now done. The cover is designed, the book layout is done, proofreading and copyediting are done. It is now ready to go to print. Printing books is expensive, especially if you want to print a cloth bound, foil debossed hardback book because you think books should be beautiful things.

As such I’m preselling the book through a crowdfunding project on Indiegogo. This is to fund the one and only print run of this book that I will ever do. a

Over the last decade, I’ve never monetised this blog. Instead, I chose to cover the costs of creating and running it from my own pocket. My motivations for writing here were always to learn and share, and this was never a thing I wanted to mix with money.

Obviously selling this book is different. I’m proud of the work I’ve done here, and in the process of selecting the contents of the book I’m still surprised at just how much I’ve written here. In going back through the archives I felt posts that I liked a lot have likely gotten lost, and I think this is a good opportunity to share them again.

I wanted to make a book to take the best of what I’ve written and to make it easy and enjoyable to read. I also wanted it to be beautiful. If you don’t want a physical book then there’ll also be an ebook (in both .mobi and .epub version) available too – properly formatted for those devices.

The book is going to be a hardback with the same dimensions as the World Atlas of Coffee. I wanted them to look good sat next to each other on a shelf. It isn’t quite as long as the Atlas, at 200 pages, but the slightly heavier paper stock means it will be pretty close in size. Despite the small run size, I’ve done my best to keep the price as low as possible. I’m am interested in producing something I’m proud of, and that I love, and making it as accessible as possible.

I’m hesitant to ask you, my reader, for much. I’d love your support for this project, and it would mean a lot. I hope that, over the years, you’ve found something of value here.

Whether your support comes as backing the project and buying a book, or just sharing it on social media with people who might enjoy it, I am very grateful for your support.

Thank you.

The best of jimseven 2004-2015 on Indiegogo

  1. The ebook version will be available ongoing  (back)

Win The Ultimate Coffee Library

We’re running a little competition over at Coffee Jobs Board What you can win The World Atlas of Coffee (signed) The Coffee Roasters Companion (signed) – Scott Rao The Professional Barista’s Handbook (signed) – Scott Rao Everything But Espresso (signed) – Scott Rao Water for Coffee (signed) – Christopher H. Hendon & Maxwell Colonna-Dashwood Modulating… Continue reading

The Turning Point I Feared

I had high hopes for London. You might claim they come from a place of misguided optimism, and I’d probably struggle to argue with you. The city and much of the UK seems to be at an inflexion point of coffee industry culture. I rarely talk about Square Mile Coffee Roasters on here but, in this… Continue reading

Coffee Jobs Update: New Features & Pay Transparency

We’ve rolled out a few new features on Coffee Jobs Board this month. I want to talk about where we are going with it, because I hope it will be something valuable and useful. There’s been a lot of talk about pay, transparency and gender in coffee. I’m interested in providing useful benchmarking for people… Continue reading

The Spreadsheet That Lies to You

If you’ve started a business, or have thought about starting a business, then you’ve probably created a very specific spreadsheet. It’s the one that tells you how much profit you’re going to make. It is, I suspect, lying to you. If you’ve started already then chances are you’ve worked out that your spreadsheet lied, and… Continue reading

2016 in review

I quite enjoy writing these end of year posts. They’re more fun than the predictions posts I used to make in the past, sort of… Words written on the blog: 15,575 (2016) Vs 18,376 (2015) I wasn’t surprised that I wrote less this year. I actually posted more often, but there were a bunch of shorter… Continue reading

The insight of pâté

Ordering the pâté in a restaurant is an interesting thing to me. It tells me a lot about a chef and the empathy within the business. This has nothing to do with ingredients or preparation. It has to do with toast. All too often I get to the last few bites of the dish, and more often… Continue reading