Friday, January 2, 2015

2014 - Year in Review

Happy New Year Readers.

I've been dormant and just lazy to write on the Blog.
As mentioned I'm active on Instagram   or Twitter.

Here are my top picks for Toronto cafe (in no particular order)

Mercury Espresso
Te Aro
Bud's Espresso

CENTRAL / Queen West
SJCB (Harbord Location)
Manic *Best Muffins ever*
Early Bird
Dark Horse (Queen West)

CENTRAL - UPTOWN *North of Bloor*
Boxcar Social
De Mello

Propeller (Roastery and Cafe)
Capital Espresso
Lit (Roncy)
Good Neighbour


What else happened in 2014?

Tried coffee from over 40 different roasteries
(Most memorable outside of GTA: Koppi, George Howell, Tim Wendelboe, Sightglass and Transcend)
(Memorable Toronto roaster:  Propeller - YirgZ, Pilot (Mercedes Geisha). Cut Coffee (Kenyan)

Current GO-TO brew device: Aeropress

Worked on my own interpretation of Blue Bottle NOLA-Style Cold Brew Coffee for

Reached 1k followers on Instagram, then quickly lost it.

Didn't buy any new brewing equipment, which surprised me... but 2015 looks to be exciting

I'll try and write more, but let's see how my schedule plays out.
Thanks for continuing to follow my journey thru coffee.
Hopefully I'll put more energy into revamping the site (REAL SOON).

Espresso Adventures

Sunday, March 30, 2014

A Honest letter - why I haven't been writing

Dear Readers,

This is an honest letter as to why I haven't been writing for the past year:

At first it was the excuse of "I'm busy" or that the idea of creating a great post turned into writers block. Then it turned into excuses after excuses. The best one I used was - "Oh man, this is so stale, I can't use it! Now my draft box sits at 228,  never to be published, and counting. Some will never make it here, some will.

Second, I found that Social media pages like FB, Twitter and Instagram was easier - and I didn't think to put into place a system to auto post to all pages -- this is the limitations of Blogger, I fully accept this.

Third - I finally merged over to Wordpress, only to have my site hacked .... Fun Times. With a capable webmaster that thought they could fix it -- 1-2 months of work, disappeared -- back to drawing board.

Lastly, life events, travel and non coffee related projects have taken a majority of my time. Starting a business and devoting time, energy and resources has been draining. It's been good though. Not complaining.

So to all, I apologize, but I'm still here, still drinking coffee, still sharing my experience with those that I encounter.

Through social media I was able to meet up in REAL LIFE with some pretty cool people in NYC, Chicago, Calgary, Edmonton, Boston and LA. Keeping up with the scene over in AUS, HK, London, and aboard is much easier these days. I'm thankful for this community!

Toronto has seen a boom in cafe/ coffee shops over the past 15 months. Some that will survive and some that will not. There has been an increase in coffee shop owners turned coffee roasters and to that I am excited about creating conversation for this site.

As always Espresso Adventures would like to continue to bring coffee to your screens, with an immediate focus of the Toronto scene. I haven't always done my best to keep you updated, but I trust that you will continue this journey with me. I will start posting more, more about the shops, and more about the coffee that the great city of Toronto has to offer. Keep drinking coffee, this is my #cupUP.

As always, follow me on Twitter, Instagram or FB page.


Monday, January 6, 2014

Costa Rica - El Quizarra (Pilot)

Costa Rica El Quizarra (Single-Origin)
Producer: Carole Zbinden
Composition: Single-Origin
Varietal: Caturra and Catuai (1370m / 4500 ft)
Roasters: Pilot Coffee Roasters (website)
Located: Toronto, ON

Preferred Method: V60 (Pour-over)

Thoughts: clean mouth-feel and smooth finish (similar to green tea), with a mouth watering feeling (cf. juicy grapes and dragonfruit.) Pick-up this bag if you want a single-origin coffee to discover, but enjoy typical coffee blends.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Happy New Year; Fresh starts, new beginnings

Happy New Year!

Hope everyone rang in the 2014 in Wrecking Ball style, I'm talking about coffee not the singer.

This year, I decided against a top 10, I might have different feelings in the upcoming weeks, but here are my best bets.

Mercury Espresso
Te Aro
Dark Horse
Sam James Coffee Bar
Manic Coffee
Capital Espresso
Good Neighbour
Early Bird

A good representation of Toronto, I must admit I am partial to the East End, and will tend to frequent cafes in my neighbourhood of Leslieville.

This year I was able to travel around the world, and met many fellow writers, drinkers, and appreciators of coffee. I reached out and did my best to meet up with those that challenge my concepts, in as many cities as possible. It's been a great year offline, and I wish I had published more on the site, but my other projects pulled me in a different direction for 2013, as such many stories landed on the cutting floor, or were never revived.

I had some great coffee from amazing roasters, few of the memorable ones:
Phil & Seb (Costa Rican)
Transcend (Guatemalan)
Bows & Arrows (Kenyan)
Ritual (Kenyan)
George Howell (Rwandan)
Pilot (Ethiopian)
Tim Wendleboe (Ethiopian)

2014 you will definitely some more writing, more photos, and more Espresso Adventures.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Cdn National Barista Competition

The Canadian Barista Champsionship happened over the weekend in Vancouver.

16 Regional finalists gathered for the chance to head to Italy.

(Competitor list)
1 Alix Osinchuk Transcend Coffee
2 Jerome Grenier-Desbiens Humble Lion
3 Brett Johnston Pilot Coffee Roasters
4 Georgia Henry Dark Horse Espresso Bar
5 Keaton Ritchie Café Myriade
6 Benjamin Put Phil & Sebastian Coffee Roasters
7 Geoff Woodley Detour Coffee Roasters
8 Kelsey Hemphill Habit Coffee
9 Morgan Allen Caffe Artigiano
10 Megan Feniak Phil & Sebastian
11 Stephane Laurence-Pressault Bridgehead
12 Cole Torode Rosso Coffee
13 William Wang Prado Cafe
14 Momiji Kishi Detour Coffee Roasters
15 Tristan Mapstone Fernwood Coffee Co
16 Clifford Hansen Bridgehead

I must admit, I was not able to watch the live feed this year, but definitely followed via twitter.

Heavy hitters this year, but it was the pose of Benjamin Put that took the crown.
As the runner-up for the past 2 years, it was a satisfying feeling having Ben represent Canada in May.

(photo courtesy of: M.Kishi) 
(Finalist: Ben Put, Morgan Allen, Keaton Ritchie, Megan Feniak, Cole Torode, Tristan Mapstone)
** Heavy representation from AB and the West**

Thursday, September 26, 2013

National Coffee Day - Sept 29th

How are you celebrating National Coffee Day this Sunday?

I've also been dormant on the site, and I apologize, I have many photos and post to share. I will get some up by Sunday

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Best of Iced Coffee (Toronto Life edition)

A little late in the summer months but Toronto Life has published their top choices for Iced Coffee (here)

1) Te Aro
2) Rooster
3) Ezra's Pound
Notable Mention: Early Bird.

I'm excited that Pilot is gaining traction; with 3 out of the 4 mentioned above.... but am puzzled as to why a couple of notables weren't mentioned.

Dark Horse or Mercury.