Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Third Wave of Coffee

After speaking to Josh from Level Ground, we chatted about the Independent Coffee Culture in Canada.
He referred to this movement as the Third Wave:

The Third Wave of Coffee refers to a current movement to produce high-quality coffee, and consider coffee as an artisanal foodstuff, like wine, rather than a commodity, like wheat. This involves improvements at all stages of production, from improving coffee bean growing, harvesting, and processing, to stronger relationships between coffee growers and coffee traders and roasters, to higher quality and fresh roasting, at times called microroasting (by analogy with microbrew beer), to skilled brewing.
 In Toronto, I've been privy to the explosion of cafes that STRESS the importance of quality beans, fresh roasting and a well crafted shots of espresso. In early 2010, a bunch of Cafes decided to ban together and form a Disloyality Program. Essentially tempting drinkers to expand their comfort boxes and go to 6 other locations to obtain stamps in order to receive their free drink. This started to gain a lot of momentum with heavy favourites such as: Dark Horse (2) , Mercury Espresso, Sam James Espresso Bar, LIT (2), Blondie's, Manic and Crema (2). Great Program, but those within the independent scene thought itwas tooo exclusive.


Fast Forward to August 2010 and the city has come together for this lovely inception of an idea:

The Indie Coffee Passport. This card allows you to go to ANY of the 24 locations and order a drink for under $5... which in all honesty is MOST drinks - Latte's are around $3.75+. I've only encountered a drink of more than $5 at MANIC. The Reason behind it was that I order a Panama Esmeralda - CLOVER style drink. This process is hard to find, since Starbucks is the only one allowed to purchase the machines -_-.
In the ensuing posts, I will give a back-log of drinks, reviews and personal opinions of the Cafes I've visited in the past month. Amazing idea for the Price of 5 drinks I have 19 locations for "free". GREAT advertising.

Happy Espresso Adventures!

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