Sunday, April 19, 2009

Time for another Giveaway

So as promised here's my next giveaway.

But before that I feel it's time to talk Coffee. And I must warn you, I might be talking about this for awhile, it's too late.......I've already gotten started. Where could I possibly start but at the beginning. This book is where it begins for me:

Well, no that's not entirely true, it actually started when after my 5th baby I decided that I would have to finally give in to coffee. Not that it never seemed appealing. But honestly, paranoias involving stained teeth & bad breath & that alarming, crazed look in certain individual's eyes when you'd mention the blessed brew sorta made me want to remain one of the un-addicted.

But, hey when you're running a 5 ring circus, you barely have time to brush your teeth & have that crazed look in your eye anyway, so heeeeey, why not get started on the coffee?

So, long story short. For the last 5 years my knowledge of coffee went as far as understanding that they were a roasted bean that should be drunk regularly & at Starbucks on special occasions. That is until I got the above mentioned book for 100Y at a 2nd hand store.

The author takes you through the coffee farms, the growth of the tree, harvesting, roasting, cupping (method for sampling the roast to determine it's grade & thus it's value in the Coffee world). And if that wasn't enough information it then goes on to give a thorough explanation of methods of grinding/storing/brewing, not to mention the dreamy land of espresso. Dear Lordy Lord! At the end he also reviews coffee country by country. Not a bad read.

OK, this is not very short is it? Let's get down to business. I am DEEPLY saddened by the mediocre name coffee has been given, not so much even because of the quality of bean as much as the way in which it's handled.

- Overdoing it on the amount of beans used
- Pouring boiling water over it
- killing the taste with brown sugar, or any sugar
- leaving a pot of coffee hot for hours & hours on end (waaaaa)

RESPECT THE BEAN, YO!!! I know it's not realistic to have top grade coffee beans on hand at all times, not to mention the taste degrades considerably after the first week after it's been roasted & every moment it's exposed to aroma robbing oxygen.

But consider this.....about 400Y for a tall coffee (possibly flavored artificially & or topped with cream), 1000Y (give or take) for a bag of beans that will last you over 20 cups of delicious coffee. I admit a hand grinder might be a bit of an investment (a few more thousand yen) but if you are a coffee lover already, why not make it count?

So if you've gotten this far into my coffee post, chances are you're gonna want to take part in this giveaway.

I'm going to be giving away one bag of 200g of coffee beans from my favorite coffee store here in Chiba.

And I promise you that this coffee will be sent to you THE DAY it has been roasted. (provided I get your address in time)

The rules are simple:

- Again, only those in Japan are eligible. (Sorry, gaijins!)
- Giveaway starts NOW and ends at 12:00am April 22nd, Wednesday.
- to be eligible leave a comment telling us 2 things, 1) how you like your coffee. If you tell me what kind of roast you like, I'll be better able to pick something you'll like. (eg: mild/medium, body/dark, or light) 2) if you have a electric or hand grinder.
- If you have a significant other, you can up your chances if you both comment. :)
- Winner will be decided using the scientific method of "names in a hat" & picked out by one of my kiddos.
- You must vow to consume this coffee within at LEAST 2-3 weeks of receiving it. (Come can do it)

Well...what are you waiting for? Go forth & comment! I'm gonna go grab me a cup of coffee. Kiss-a-lova!

PS. Winner will be announced 9:00 am, April 22nd, Wednesday. (Happy B'day, Mike)


Lil said...

aww dang, I used to drink adulterated coffee from hawaii such as coconut infused :) ground and strained, At least it wasn't instant! than I went for the plunger and in the supermarkets here you can get whole beans and chuck them in their machine grinder..but never really paid attention to the bean or body or all that, it always sounds so complex! Now I'm coffee free but a tea fanatic(earl grey and chai) so I have to sit out on this game :( Interested in seeing how everyone likes their coffee though! You didn't mention how you like your coffee or how you grind?

Aiki said...

Haha! I love coffee with tons of sugar and cream. I guess I`m not a true coffee drinker. Which makes sense in a home with very few coffee cups, no coffee, no coffee maker, and definitely no grinder..
So I wouldn`t know what "roast" I like..But I DO love coffee!

Aiki said...

umm...that would be me not Aiki..

BladeMaster said...

Seriously if a young single person needs coffee to get out of bed in the morning....the are old already.

Coffee sure does smell good for breakfast though, sometimes i put on a cup of coffee to brew though i never drink it just cause it makes people more hungry and makes the rest of the breakfast smell good. You know like eggs, bacon....etc.

Ivan said...

1) I like medium roast, no sugar, a little milk or cream, with a small piece of pie or cake on the side.
2) I would use and electric grinder (right now I use ground coffee)

Kari said...

At the moment I like decaf (but not religiously).
Seeing as I haven't been a regular coffee drinker for... oh about 8 years now, I'd have to go with Iven's preferences on coffee cos I usually drink some of his. :P

Masa Rider said...

Yes yes Al!! I like this Idea lots and lots. At first I was like "Nahh, I won't put my name in the hat..." But then it was like "I MUST". The coffee just sounds too good.
1) I like my coffee black... or with real cream.

2) I'd probably use an electric grinder... I think there are bits of 100 year old coffee in our hand grinder.

Babylove said...

I love it, coffee is flushing out the moles. Some how I figured Ivan couldn't refuse.

Lils: Sorry :( you're not here. My husband uses the plunger, but it's too rich for me.

Blade: I totally agree about the smell. My favorite part about coffee is grinding it, the smell is just tooo good.

I like bold or medium bold roast hand ground & paper filter, no sugar (usually)& enough cream or milk. If it's a reeeeally yummy roast I'll have it black.

Dawnie said...

I'm not so big on coffee (unless it's coffee-flavored sugary cream) but i'm hoping to win it for a certain Mr. I., who's in love with good coffee.
1) Definitely sweet and creamy..there's nothing like a starbucks frappuccino! and that goes to show how polluted my tastebuds are.
2) I believe there's a hand grinder somewhere in our storage, but as i haven't actually seen it, im not sure. We use ground coffee.

Aich said...

Ooooh, this is the kind of post I love! That book looks delicious.
Ok, the essentials: 1) I like medium...not too heavy. 2) I have an electric grinder.
Bring along that book when you come tonight!

Mike said...

Thanks for the Bday congrats!!!(hint hint, Birthday!!)
--Hi name is mike(room: hi mike) uh... heh. This is kinda new for me (room:sheeeeen)uh, ok,I was a dedicated 2-3 sugars in an instant coffee BIG mug----until i woke up one morning in matsumoto with THE worst hang over of my life (thanks to 3 after parties)with a whole day of music to play. We were treated to a breakfast complete with Weiner coffee (of which this coffee house was famous for--2nd generation). The result? I gave up sugar in coffee immediately and if the brew is right--to hell with the milk. The day of that breaky, we played for 6 hours straight on the street--not bad! AND recorded TWO songs that went on our "live" album.
All that to say, I dunno what label I like. I know I like to taste the flavour, minus the bitter ZING that accompanies the lesser brews. I like it heavy tasting....I have an electric grinder.

Lea said...

Coffee....ahh the joy's of coffee.

I like it dark, almost mudlike in consistency (And i can hear you children going 'yelch!'..but yes, that is how it's made in Asia.)with thick, sweet cream inside and no sugar. SUCH a way to make it thru the day..and a lifesaver when ur handling 20 screaming kids at a daycare. heh.

Michelle said...

Hey Alisa, this is Michelle from Chiba or Liza's sister or Amy's adolescent friend or however it is that you know me. I sort of stumbled on your blog, and since I recently decided to start drinking coffee so that I can get early in the morning(the self discipline thing just doesnt work when you are in love with sleep!) So, anyways, I was interested to know where in Chiba you get this coffee, as I am with my mom right now and currently in Chiba.
I havent been a coffee drinker, but ideally, I like coffee(more on the bold side) freshly ground, and done in a perculator on the stove, no sugar, with a bit of a spice added to it(guessing cinnamon, etc) the sweetner/cream/junk being in a nice slice of something on the side.
Anyways, I know I'm outdating this post even more, but to get to the point once more: where in Chiba doth one get good coffee beans?
Please answer with to my a post would do as well. Tx a billion!