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Friday - November 27, 2020

Articles Written By Java

 

Coffee + Books: Where to Read and Caffeinate in Denver

September 20th, 2020

If I could host my own travel show, I’d drive across the United States visiting the best specialty coffeeshops and independent bookstores or public libraries that America’s cities have to offer. But since I don’t believe my tv dreams will come true, I’m going to share two wonderful spots in Downtown Denver instead, where you can pick up a book and head over to a nearby café to read it. Tattered Cover & Mercantile I don’t care how trendy or touristy it is, because Union Station is a beautiful place and I can’t fault its visiting crowds. If you go on a weekday, after Summer has ended,... Read More

Five Points: Where Food Culture & Gentrification Intersect

September 8th, 2020

With the recent opening of Ink! Coffee on Larimer and 28th, Denver’s River North Art District (RiNo) continues its food and coffee supremacy. RiNo, which is technically a part of the Five Points neighborhood, is already a nationally recognized food hub. The new location from the Aspen-based Ink!—one of Colorado’s biggest coffee chains—will most likely only fuel RiNo’s status as a popular culinary center. Ink! will be competing with two other coffee shops on Larimer Street—Huckleberry and Crema. On nearby Brighton Boulevard, coffee lovers will find two other options: Wystone’s at Industry... Read More

A Documentary Film for All Coffee Lovers

August 8th, 2020

Part love letter, part visual treatise, A Film About Coffee is a beautiful documentary that explores the growing field of specialty coffee. It’s a short but comprehensive film that ebbs and flows from roastery to farm to café. With interviews from industry professionals around the world—including company owners, champion baristas, seasoned growers, and dedicated buyers—this food doc covers many bases to prove the importance of ethically sourced and skillfully crafted coffee. By showing the hard work and passion it takes to make a great cup of coffee, A Film About Coffee asks viewers to... Read More

Coffee4Change: A New Way to Support Coffee Farmers

June 14th, 2020

Coffee4Change aims to raise funds to aid local workers in Haiti, Honduras, Timor-Leste, Papua New Guinea, and Uganda. The money raised will help ensure that coffee farmers are utilizing the most effective business models and environmentally efficient techniques to grow and sell their crops. It sounds like an excellent way to support the prosperous future of ethical and sustainable coffee. You can get behind this great fund raiser for as low as the price of a cup of coffee. Check out the campaign’s website for more details.  Read More

A Sustainable Future for Coffee

June 13th, 2020

One of the major issues in the coffee industry is sustainability. In every aspect and area of the business—from the farm to cup—there is room for growth when it comes to energy and waste management. The future of coffee (like any commodity dealing with climate change) depends on the ability of farmers, roasters, baristas, and customers to make smart decisions that favor long term sustainability goals. As consumers, we can choose to buy coffee from roasteries that participate in direct trade with farmers and cooperatives invested in environmentally sound growing practices. We can also make the... Read More

Remembering Bowie in Denver

January 13th, 2016

Just before heading to bed on Sunday night, I read the shocking and sad news: David Bowie had passed. I now have to reckon with the knowledge that the infinite creative artist, the beautiful mythical creature, the timeless/ageless stranger from the cosmos, was also a mortal man. Of course I’ve been listening to my favorite Bowie songs these past few days (including Starman, The Man Who Sold the World, and Modern Love), as well as downloading my gaps in his discography (he made a lot of music). But I’ve also been reading random articles (like the “nobituary” published... Read More

Simple but Sweet Coffee Gift Ideas

December 16th, 2015

Coffee is a deliciously warm and energizing gift to give to your loved ones this holiday season. It’s also a great way to help you get through the often stressful work weeks and sometimes hectic festivities during December. Whether you’re rewarding yourself or giving coffee to others, there are many caffeine-related present options. There’s the classic gift card or a bag of beans from a local roaster (if you’re a lazy shopper like me), as well as snazzy brewing devices and handy travel mugs (if you’re feeling a bit more thoughtful). You can also purchase a coffee gift... Read More

The Fight for Gender-Neutral Cafés in Pakistan

November 18th, 2015

A group of bold women in Pakistan are fighting to desegregate public spaces, one cup of chai at a time. Roadside tea stalls or coffee shops in Pakistan—known as “dhabas”—are generally unwelcoming to female patrons. In various parts of Southern Asia, it is culturally unacceptable for women to frequent public spaces or communal spots regularly. In these painfully patriarchal rural and urban communities, women are not encouraged to socialize publicly or move around on their own freely. But Desi feminists are fighting against these sexist standards by claiming typically segregated places like... Read More

New Denver Hangout: Black Eye Coffee  

November 4th, 2015

The floor level of a new residential complex, on a relatively quiet corner in Denver, is an atypical spot for a stylish specialty café. The unassuming location is just one part of the overall big charm at Black Eye Coffee’s second outpost, which opened last month in Cap Hill (the original one is located in LoHi). Situated below Moto Apartments on Sherman and 8th Ave., the ultra cool, dark-but-welcoming, and art-deco inspired coffee shop/ bar features delicious drinks, a variety of eats, and solid service from 6 in the morning till 2am. With its surprising menu selection, gorgeously sleek design,... Read More

Barista: A New Coffee Documentary

October 21st, 2015

Most people don’t think about the potential for coffee to be an art form or a competitive sport, unless they are professionals in the industry. So, an upcoming documentary about the U.S. Barista Championship (USBC) will be an informative and potentially entertaining film for most coffee layman. Barista explores the high energy and high stakes competitive coffee-making scene. The film highlights the passion and drive of several competitors as they prepare for and take part in the annual coffee spectacle known as the National Barista Championship or USBC. Check out the food competition... Read More

Goodbye Summer

September 23rd, 2015

Despite the fun seasonal events and vacation travel opportunities, I’m still a Summer-hater. Dealing with excessive sunshine and heat, plus the inability to wear layers, is incredibly frustrating and uncomfortable for me. So I’m super excited that it is officially the first day of Fall—my favorite season—and that the weather is finally beginning to cool. But before I dig out my warm coats, cozy beanies, and knitted scarfs from the depths of my closet, I’d like to give a final farewell to the iced/cold drink season by saluting a couple of my favorite Summertime brews and caffeine-fix stops... Read More

Denver Public Library’s Brew HA! HA!

August 26th, 2015

September is when Summer ends and the new school year begins, which makes it a less-than-favorable time for many. But now, thanks to the Denver Public Library, we locals have something to look forward to next month: Brew Ha! Ha! is DPL’s month-long celebration of the city’s craft brewery culture. Beer, tea, and coffee lovers will all be able to enjoy a slew of events and resources, including brewing lessons, discounts at local bars and cafés, and informative lectures/discussions about some of your favorite drinks. Here are the upcoming coffee-related happenings that I’m excited about in... Read More

Coffee Notes

August 12th, 2015

It appears that I have been slowly and unwittingly elevating my boyfriend’s coffee standards. After three years of dating and being exposed to the specialty beans I invest in, he’s finally becoming more concerned and vocal about the quality of his home brews and drink purchases. Recently, he even started documenting each new coffee that he tries, in a snazzy little notebook he bought at our local coffeeshop. 33 Cups of Coffee is the pocket-sized journal that my boyfriend keeps, for jotting down his tasting notes. It contains a flavor wheel, a five-star rating system, and spaces to write down... Read More

Coffee & Cats: An Istanbul Photo Diary

July 15th, 2015

A look through my iPhone photos from my recent visit to Istanbul provides a narrow glimpse into my trip. A few touristy snapshots of ancient monuments and various places of worship reveal the city’s historical and geographical peculiarities—as the gateway between Europe and the Middle East—but say little about my personal time spent there. On my phone’s camera you won’t find any visual keepsakes from the paternal family reunion that was the purpose of the trip. My Dad and other relatives wanted me in front of the cameras and in the center of all the shots so I obliged them. They had come... Read More

Coffee Jobs: It Pays to be Wired

June 17th, 2015

While it can be tough relying on tips for a living, working as a barista also has the potential of being a tolerable, decently paying, and possibly even enjoyable part-time or transitional job. With specialty coffee companies on the rise and major chains still making solid profits, the occupational opportunities and benefits of barista-ing have actually never looked so appealing for those searching for employment. Of course now that I’m not working in a coffee shop, I kind of miss working in one, even though I didn’t adore the scene when I was in it. Maybe “the beans are always fresher... Read More

Cold Coffee Trends: Tonics & Nitro

May 20th, 2015

While not a new concept, carbonated iced cold coffee drinks do seem to be in vogue right now. From espresso tonics to nitro cold brews, expect more cafes to offer bubbles with your coffee. Adding carbonation to drinks is both refreshing on the palate and pleasant for the stomach, since it helps cut the acidity of coffee. A shot of espresso poured over tonic water is an effervescent variation on iced Americanos, which I’m eager to see added to more menus nationwide. I have no doubt that stout-like nitrogen infused iced coffees served on tap will be popular here in Colorado, the beer lovers state. While... Read More

How I had Fun at a Horror Film Festival

May 6th, 2015

I don’t totally dislike the horror film genre. I just prefer not to be incredibly disturbed and grossed out while watching a movie because, honestly, I’m good at traumatizing myself in real life. Although I’m not afraid of the dark and I prefer to live alone, I’m also kind of a jumpy and paranoid person. I get startled when my light-footed boyfriend comes up behind me just to ask a question and if a friend who drives home late at night forgets to text me upon her safe arrival then I’ll assume the worst—that she died in a car crash. Since I’m slightly morbid, I do like some genres... Read More

Coffee for Your Garden & Your Skin

April 22nd, 2015

When I was a barista in Brooklyn, I remember a customer asking for the café’s unwanted coffee grounds for his home composting. We had tons of it—leftover from the espresso grinder and from making drip coffee—filling up our trashcans so we were happy to pass some on to him. Recycling coffee grounds into your compost or fertilizer is a fantastic way to cut down on coffee waste. It’s also a great way to add valuable nutrients to your garden, since coffee is full of nitrogen and antioxidants. Another fun use for coffee, which I also learned while working at that shop in Brooklyn, is for skincare.... Read More

Cold Brew Season

April 8th, 2015

Despite the ridiculous snowfall last week, it is officially iced coffee season here in Colorado. While I prefer hot coffee, I do occasionally thirst for a refreshing iced coffee on hot and sunny days. Because I usually drink iced coffee the way I drink regular coffee—with no milk or sugar—I find most conventional iced coffee to be bitter. Sometimes I add coconut water to my iced coffee to make it tastier—which I totally thought was a brilliant and unique idea until I discovered that it was not. But there are a few iced coffees I find light and nuanced in flavor, without adding anything to... Read More

LA Coffee Nostalgia

March 25th, 2015

I celebrated the start of Spring with family and friends in Los Angeles, where I grew up. The sunny overcrowded metropolis that I often can’t stand but do ultimately love has an amazing coffee scene. Whenever I’m back in the sprawling suburban city, I’m eager to check out new coffee shops and revisit old favorites. From homegrown standards like Lamill and Groundwork to recent imports like San Francisco’s Blue Bottle and Santa Cruz’s Verve, LA continues to impress locals and visitors alike with its abundance of specialty coffee. My thoughts on Los Angeles are layered and I like recalling... Read More