CoffeeGeek Launches! and new stuff!
Posted January 13, 2002 6:10pm
When I sat down to write this rant, for some reason, the Aerosmith song "Back in the Saddle" kept playing in my head.
It's been sumkinda crazy past few weeks. That other site was taking up almost all my free time (and continues to do so as we work out the bugs), and when I was a feature interview for a Reuters story a few weeks ago, all of a sudden the phone was ringing like crazy, I'm being interviewed left and right, and site traffic increased exponentially (along with the email that comes with it). It's all good, but I'm feeling a tad burned out.
One thing that happened is something that bothered me quite a bit. When I announced the launch of CoffeeGeek in the usenet group alt.coffee, several people asked me if I was shutting down this here website.
I told them of course not, and what kind of freaked me out is that some of them wrote "hrmm, that's a mistake, why maintain both sites.... you should shut CoffeeKid down now..."
Folks. Folks. People... don't you get it? CoffeeGeek is not "my" website. Well, okay, I own it (actually, my company owns it), but it is a community website - a website that belongs, in a big way, to the members who visit and participate in the website. It is Aaron DeLazzer's website. It is Terry Z's website. It is Ted Simpson's website. It is Tom O'Keefe's website, for the gosh sakes.
Coffeekid. Now that's "my" website. Get it? Mine.
I think that over the past two years, this has been lost on many people. This is my little hobby website. I'm glad to share this site with anyone who visits, but it's mine - I mean the time, effort and gobs of dough that come out of my pocket should be a testament to that. And it will continue to be my site, in a big way in fact.
Because next month, I'm going to be doing a massive update to this website, overhauling the entire thing, and plugging an updated design into our WIPS content management system software. That means adding rants will be very easy to do, and maintaining the website will be a breeze. And in a way, I'm going to be reclaiming the site, taking most (if not all) the "community" features like detailed reviews, product reviews and stuff off this site and completely porting those over to CoffeeGeek. I also have some very cool new content planned, and easy ways for me to add new features to this site.
But it's mine. Get it? I don't go to you and say "hey, so and so, don't you think your personal site / hobby website should be retired?" So please don't do that to me, okay? It hurts my feelings (okay, not too much, but it did sting a bit).
News and Info
First up, Terry Z from Espresso Parts Northwest sent me the first of two test grinders for detailed review candidates on the CoffeeGeek website. I got the flat burr doser model, and the conical burr doser model is on its way. They are working out great so far, and if you want to find out more, visit the First Look over at CoffeeGeek.
New Tamper on the Market
Terry also sent me a new product he's having made in Washington State - a mid-range tamper with a convex base. You can see it pictured to the left. While I have to give a VERY slight edge still to my favourite all time tamper, the ErgoPacker from Espresso Vivace, I have to say this tamper is a very well made product that would please any serious espresso hound. They are priced at a very economical $26 each, but since they are not yet listed on Terry's website, you will probably have to order direct (1.800.459.5594). Different sizings should be available. You can also order customized versions with a laser etched logo if you order a minimum set number.
The Most Beautiful Coffee Brewer You'll Ever See
Patrick Van Den Noortgaete, a fellow from Belgium, recently sent me four of his very amazing balance brewers for Detailed Review status on the CoffeeGeek site. I published a First Look today on them, so go check it out. These are absolutely smashing, 'nuff said. Oh one more thing - if you order via email and mention CoffeeGeek, you get an amazing price on them - about $300 off the list price for the Royal, and $100 off the list for the Cafetino brewer.
Happenings at Macaw Coffee (Canadian news)
Brian Swan from Macaw Coffee in Ottawa (and Toronto) and I recently touched base again and we discussed Brian's efforts to expand his line of offerings. He's now selling the Maestro grinder for a price that is better than the US price, after import taxes and duties. If you're outside of Ontario, you even get to skip the PST. Brian is also selling the SL-90 espresso machine at a great price. His green coffee offering continues to expand and he's sent me a sampler pack of some of this year's prize beans. I'll have a short report in a few rants. Brian's a great guy to deal with, is very passionate about quality coffee, and I've never heard a complaint about anyone doing business with him - if you're in Canada and want to get into homeroasting or want a Maestro grinder, definitely hook up with him.
I am so bursting at the seams, because I can't just outright announce what I know. But I can say this: as many as a half dozen different major brand names in the espresso market are going to be introducing new consumer, prosumer, light commercial and full commercial machines this year. We've already seen the Innova grinder... but is that all from Innova? Who knows :). Other big name companies are lining up to introduce products. This year's SCAA, as well as some European food and service industry trade shows could have some big announcements. Stay tuned...
Well, that's about it this time around. I can't promise many updates before this website gets its overhaul, but after WIPS is installed, I can write a rant as easy as opening up my word processor - no html or multiple page updating, so once that happens, things will rock and roll again. If you don't believe me, take a look at my personal site (non coffee) - before WIPS was installed, I updated it maybe once every month or two. Now the rants come fast and furious - okay, once every several days... sometimes weeks.... but never more than a month :)
And that's it this time around. Catch you next time!