James and I began our relationship like any other couple scenario. We tried to do the typical thing, you know the ‘I’ll pick you up at around 7am for a coffee before work.’ But soon realised we both didn’t enjoy coffee at all. What were we doing wasting our time sitting, sipping on the stuff. What it did ultimately was lead us to two very different relationships we have with this little bean. Mine was the kind of love/hate relationship with coffee. It’s also a similar one to the beach, but I’ll save that story for another time. So, coffee. I love the taste but what it does to my body is crazy. I literally get terrible heart palpitations! And James, well, he became dependant on the stuff. You know the coffee headaches if he doesn’t have one. Yep, that’s him. Oh, and did I mention when we do go for a coffee on the slight chance we spend WAY too much time finding the right place (cough, cough, coffee snob, cough, cough).
Everyone I know loves the warm, rich smell of coffee. I mean, people literally have it brewing when they are trying to sell their home. The potential buyers enter the kitchen and they are automatically taken to another place, or perhaps they feel at home and comforted by the smell. Or even that they can imagine sipping on their own coffee and having a moment to themselves. Oh wait, let’s be real here. A moment with their four children perhaps….
Anyway, back to the point, a few years ago we realised we couldn’t be the biggest ‘let’s go out for coffee and people watch’ kind of folk. Like I said, I can’t have too much coffee and with a growing family, our adventures out are more park play. We did some research and worked out it would be far more cost effective if we saved up and bought one incredible machine so James could enjoy his one or two, three, oh heck, who’s counting, coffees per day. We could see that it would be a wise investment for our family and it would pay itself off in only a few months.
Now, we were very fortunate. We bought our coffee machine off some wonderful friends of ours. I’ll tag their famous roasted beans below. Our coffee machine is a VBM VIBIEMME. The guts of it is Italian (say no more) and it’s like a mini cafe quality Espresso Machine. You can always hunt down a second hand one like we were lucky enough to score. James says all the reputable brands are getting better and better at creating good systems. I’ll list a few great coffee machines also for you to take the research out of the way. Because we simply don’t go out often for coffee we have had to hunt down the best beans for his (and my mild) enjoyment.
Here are our top 6 coffee beans.
- Ona Coffee (Raspberry Candy)- Canberra. They were awarded second place in the WORLD BREWERS CUP 2017. They also won WORLDS best Barrista https://onacoffee.com.au/news-events/
- Drumroll Coffee Roasters – Engadine. These guys are friends of ours, they are the ones who sold us their beautiful coffee machine. Their beans are top notch!
- White Horse – Sutherland.
- Ambrose (Premium Blend) – Hunter Valley.
- Peaberrys (Black Betty) – Newcastle.
- Darks (Satans Crowbar)- Newcastle.
It’s actually been a whole lot of fun growing in our taste for a good, rich coffee. During our outings as a family we discover great places that have rave reviews on particular beans. We simply pick up a bag and try it out at home. For Ona Coffee, I read an article about it and remembered where it was when we took a family trip down to the snow. Drumroll was an easy one through friends and as for White Horse, people were lined up down the street to buy their coffee. It was a must to try.
We lived in Newcastle for two and a half years so it gave us plenty of time to check out the roasters there and what we found to be the best. James’ colleague owned a coffee shop and swore by the Ambrose Beans. It’s a fun process and so easy to do now we have a thing called google! Ha.
Just this year we invested in a cold drip so that I could have a small amount of coffee when I like, you know, for that slight kick because that saying about an apple a day (not the one about keeping the doctor away, the other one) having the same effect as coffee, just gradually giving you energy… the apple does nothing! NOT A THING! YOU’RE DREAMING if you believe this. Actually let me know if you can feel the difference in your energy levels when you eat an apple. I promise I’m not laughing as I type this question. Much. (Insert a very convincing serious face). Before we bought a cold drip James would make us Cold Brew. It was super easy to make and so smooth. I’m telling you it’s the best recipe but let me encourage you to be creative and adjust to your liking.
1 Part Coarsely Ground Fresh Coffee Beans : 4 Parts Filtered Water
Leave in the Fridge 24-48 house (per preferred taste)
Strain a few times through a cheese cloth, so you are only left with the Brew
Keep in the Fridge and drink (often) with ice and a drop of milk, or straight
James usually doubles it, making 2 litres at a time
Anyway, below are a few really good coffee machines we recommend. I’ve tagged our one also (above), for those who are interested in what we have!