Monday, March 9, 2009

Hitting the Road!

The average person has probably never heard of Chicago’s annual International Home Housewares Show, but in the world of coffeemakers, it’s the World’s Fair of trade shows. Each year, more than 20,000 buyers from 60 countries come to the show in search of new products to add to their product lines, and we’ll be giving them the chance to experience Hourglass coffee in person March 22nd through the 24th in the Gourmet Home District. This is truly the world debut of the Hourglass, and we couldn’t be more excited.

When we launched retail sales of the Hourglass last November, we had no idea we’d have the honor of attending the International Home Housewares Show so soon. But when we got the chance to go, we jumped—so we’ve spent the last several weeks putting together everything for our booth, from making custom backdrops to deciding what kind of coffee we’re going to bring with us to the show! Not only will buyers have the chance to learn about the Hourglass’s cold-water infusion process, and the benefits of low-acid coffee, but they’ll be able to taste the difference for themselves.

We’ve had great experiences and a fantastic response from retailers that we work with right now, and the show gives us the opportunity to build on that success, and bring the Hourglass to even more coffee drinkers. It’s a dream come true to be able to bring the future of coffee to the International Home Housewares Show—we’ll report back soon on our adventures!

Monday, March 2, 2009

The Hourglass Takes the Barista Test

Today, the Blog is in for a treat: our first guest Blogger, Tara! Tara is a college student in Portland and was a barista for four years. More importantly, she’s a coffee fanatic, and one with the demanding lifestyle of a student. We asked Tara to spend a week with the Hourglass and report back with her professional opinion—here’s what she had to say!

I’ve always made good coffee. I’m not sure where I picked it up, but I’ve been making coffee since I was little, and I’ve enjoyed the ritual of making coffee as much as I have drinking it. Trying out the Hourglass made me nervous at first—I’m used to coffee from high-end equipment, and I expect a lot from my coffee’s flavor. After the first week, I can honestly tell you that I’ve loved drinking it—it’s just plain good coffee—but more than that, I’ve loved making it.

Making Hourglass coffee is different than making traditional coffee in a lot of ways, but they have one important thing in common: it’s all in how you serve it. I made my first brew of coffee extract on a Sunday night, not knowing that the real nuances were yet to come. Monday morning, I took a hot thermos to class with me made with a small amount of extract; it was actually hard to concentrate in class, because I kept stopping to drink more! It wasn’t until Tuesday afternoon that I tried iced Hourglass coffee, which was perfect just before my 3-hour lecture. I was able to arrive to class both satisfied and alert. Each time I had another cup, I got to experiment with the amounts of extract to include, how much to serve at once, and each time, I got to experience a new subtlety of the Hourglass coffee’s flavor.

That first batch lasted four days, and by the night of the third, I was already busy thinking up new recipes and flavors to try with the Hourglass. The brew process fit perfectly into my schedule—I make it on Sunday nights with my Sunday-night homework. And with plenty of coffee extract, there was ALWAYS fresh coffee around, so I never had to worry about making too much or too little. If I started my day with piping-hot Hourglass coffee, I could still have a cold coffee with lunch with no extra fuss.

I still love the ritual of making coffee, and I’m still on the snobby side about my tastes in coffee. The Hourglass just changed my process, and evolved it to a way that works better for me on several different levels. Who knew change could be so yummy?