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Ogawa Coffee Comes to Boston

ogawa coffeeOne of Japan’s biggest names in coffee, Ogawa Coffee, has made plans to open their very first coffee shop in the United States in the city of Boston. Why Boston versus a place like New York or a closer city like Seattle who is known for coffee? This choice was made for the similarities that they feel Boston has to Kyoto, their headquarters in Japan. Japan is one of the top consumers of coffee around the world, behind USA and Germany.

The Japanese coffee style has been described as being very strong or potent while the Ogawa coffee is known for the thickness and sophistication of their coffee. Unlike the on-the-go mentality of many Americans, Ogawa coffee is one that is served in a Japanese glassware brand called Hario (now found at Williams and Sonoma) and to have the art behind it be appreciated. In order to translate this quality to America, Ogawa coffee has brought the 2010 World Latte Art Champion, Haruna Murayama, to help with the creation of the menu (below is the 2010 World Latte Art Champion submission).

ogawa coffee 2010 coffee latte art

We often take our coffee on the go and use more espresso type beverages than the Japanese do. It will be interesting to see how Ogawa bridges these coffee cultural differences when they debut their first store in the states.  Me, I just can’t wait to see what kind of art will be waiting in my first cup. :)

ogawa coffee latte art

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Espresso On The Go

minipresso pour

We’ve been talking for a while now how gadgets can enhance the way we brew and how fast we can brew coffee {See Pocket-Sized Coffee, Why Didn’t We Think of That?! and Alarm Clock with a Perk to name a few } What do you call a espresso machine that is portable, handheld, and requires no electricity? The MINIPRESSO! This little pill-like capsule holds the grounds, water, and the lid doubles as a cup for your espresso shot. It is powered through a small pump action piston the you squeeze with your hand. This forces the water through the coffee grounds at the same psi standard for all espresso beverages (116 psi).

minipresso open

The convenience of this little capsule is truly well thought out. It can be filled with your own coffee grounds or with their own mini cups called Caffitaly capsules. The water capsule piece on it can also be upgraded to a larger one if you are interested in going beyond just a shot of espresso. The Minipresso is such a sleek design that makes it easy to take wherever you want and enjoy your espresso in the wildest of places, where you could have never thought possible.

minipresso pump

Before you do a Google search you should know it is not shipping yet as they are finishing up their testing and finalizing warranty guidelines. But, you can pre-order it now and receive the Minipresso early in 2015 when they release the final product and ship it.  BONUS: If you pre-order your Minipresso now, you can get it at a ten dollar discount from its already low price of $49!

What do you think about this portable espresso maker?

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October Is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is already well known for Columbus Day and Halloween, but it is fast becoming synonymous with Breast Cancer, too. The whole month is dedicated to increasing the awareness of breast cancer. Statistically, breast cancer affects one in eight women in different levels of severity. There are many well-known organizations that contribute to the breast cancer fight.  The NFL makes great efforts to increase awareness encouraging all players, staff and facilities to deck out in pink as it is the official color that represents the disease awareness.

nfl breast cancer

Unfortunately, breast cancer is hereditary, but there have been numerous studies suggesting ways to reduce the risk of breast cancer. Changing one’s diet and including certain vitamins can help our bodies in certain ways with certain foods or beverages. The more wholesome [ or “clean eating”] the better, but some studies have shown you should ingest specific foods in order to reduce your risk of breast cancer. Vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower are very good to specifically reduce the risk of estrogen sensitive cancers. Fiber alone has been found to reduce breast cancer when you eat ten grams to your daily diet. An uncommon one, seaweed, has been found to have a preventative effect on breast cancer as well. And if possible, it is very helpful to reduce the amount of consumption for foods that are processed or have pesticides or chemicals associated with them [again, “clean eating”]. This means that organic or hormone free foods are really the best and most nutritious. Of course coffee has got to enter the discussion at some point! It has antioxidants in it that can help protect cells from damage that may lead to cancer.

breast cancer

You can put your love of coffee can to good use by helping the fight against breast cancer with Caribou Coffee. For a limited time, Caribou Coffee has a blend of light roast coffee dedicated to their roast-master, Amy, who lost her life in the fight against breast cancer. So go ahead and get your cup of coffee for yourself, while 10% of the proceeds go to the Susan G. Komen fight for the cure against breast cancer. As an added plus, you can visit their page on Facebook and donate a virtual tulip (Amy’s favorite flower) which will then be actually planted in Amy’s National Garden of Hope at the Historic Brookside Gardens in D.C..

amys blend

 

[Medical disclaimer: We are not doctor’s!] Like any lifestyle and/or dietary change, you should always consult your doctor before making any changes to your exercise and diet routines.  Early detection is the best chance of surviving any type of cancer, so make sure you don’t make excuses, see your doctor and get your mammogram, colonoscopy or whatever exam can help you!

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An Alarming Re-Branding

nescafe alarm top

While we’re on the subject of innovative alarm clocks {see our recent perk post} we came across this cute gem. Nescafe has created their own type of alarm clock that is simple yet has a clever twist to it {pun intended!}. This alarm clock is actually the lid to your coffee grounds. In an effort to re-brand themselves, Nescafe has created a limited supply of their special alarm clocks in a gift box.

nescafe alarm box

Simply, these stylish lids have an alarm that is underneath the lid. You put the lid on the Nescafe coffee and set the alarm for the desired wake-up time. Once it goes off, the only way to turn it off is to take the lid off. Not sure that one could be any closer to making their coffee than having to open up your grounds to turn your alarm clock off! These boxes include coffee, the special alarm clock lid, a mug, and a booklet to describe Nescafe history and the items included.

nescafe alarm three

Such a simple idea yet very effective and I love anything that gives me an excuse to play with my coffee. Hhmmm…I wonder which alarm tone I would choose?

What are some innovative ways you’ve used to help you get to your coffee quicker?