The other day a customer, turned late night email friend and then the supplier of the amazing reed avocado, in passing mentioned that that he and Bonnie (spousal unit) were avid coffee tasters. That is, people who love to try different coffee beans.

No doubt his knowledge of beans far exceeds mine… My experience of coffee is limited to drinking it.

I have never roasted beans nor pulled a shot of coffee on a big machine. But, I have wandered around and tried many of the various coffee houses in Seattle, of which we have a good number.

I will admit that I allow my love of a good logo to draw me to a place to drink.

Today I sit in Caffe Vita,

sun shining, thinking about how this article will go. I am here looking for some of my favorite coffees for Peter, (remember Peter and Bonnie?) as I wanted to send them some, along with his recent order of our coffee from Italy. I am here not because I had been to this “house” before, but because they had the coffee I was looking for with their wide selection. The roaster is cross town, and this is closer, so here I am.

I ended up here because a coffee house that I frequent is convenient located next door to Aikido class. It has a great name for a cafe and a great logo; It’s called Fuel. Turns out they use Caffe Vita’s coffee.

Here in Seattle, it’s almost uncool to hang at a place that doesn’t make its own beans/coffee. Not that I really care, ‘cus as I mentioned the logo the name sometimes matters more.

Well actually that isn’t exactly true, the Barista matters the most. They need to be friendly more than anything, treating the plain to the insane equally. Whether you know beans or not,  a good barista should be nice and make everyone a good, hot, cup of coffee.

Perfect coffee art creation

You can tell when the Barista cares about what they make. An intense look of concentration when they pull the shot; the need to perfect how the foam, the cream, the milk, the coffee looks. And knows just how long the customer needs the beans to be used for; meaning how much water is pulled through the beans……

Coffee is very cult-like in Seattle. Those of us who like to drink a good cup of joe have our favorites. It may not be just one place or just one barista. But, in any neighborhood, we know where we like to go and we are willing to go to great lengths to get there.

Some swear it’s the bean and the roaster. Others, like me, know it’s the barista who makes the coffee great. I have one favorite barista who seems to remember everyone’s coffee order by sight. She can run the till, have three to five orders going at the same time, and carry on about the morning’s news in a continuously flowing conversation that passes from one customer to the next!

She remembers every drink, she is amazing!


So, what do you do when you don’t have a barista to make your morning cup of coffee? You make your own. This is when the blend of beans and the roaster really become critical. It’s hard to argue against your neighborhood roaster, as there is nothing like freshly roasted beans.

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