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  1. Thanks everyone for the info. I think I'm going to take some of the recipes and experiment with them. Thanks! Vin
  2. Hi all, I'm wondering if anyone knows of a local company that makes fresh marshmellows? I'm looking for something smaller so it could melt with a children's hot cocoa. Thanks, Vin
  3. Hi Nick, I didn't know you were an egulleter! You know Nick I came from the fine dining community and then went into the coffeehouse/roasting business. When I ran a critically acclaimed restaurant in Vancouver one of the things I wanted to implement was to have the best coffee in a fine dining restaurant. I felt that restauarants we're generally flawed from the start in serving great coffee. What I found: 1. More than one person was responsible for making espresso. Usually whoever sold the espresso made the espresso. This is a major flaw as you know. It's much harder to train 20 staff to make espresso than 1-2 trained people in the restaurant. 2. Not everyone in Fine Dining is passionate about coffee. You're passionate because you're in the coffee business. In a restaurant you come across a lot of people, some of which don't like coffee ... some are tea drinkers .... most are wine enthusiast. So the major problem is not having ownership or management of a fine dining restaurant be passionate about coffee. I know some of the best chefs in the city and you'd be surprised how many chefs don't like coffee. I found it strange ... yet in my experience true. 3. Restaurants need to be great at everything to be successful. In coffee you really focus on coffee and service. Anyone that runs a kitchen understands the mass amount of things that need to be inplace to run the line. For those of you not in the business, ask yourself " How long would it take me to cook a dinner for 4 at home?" Most people will take all day to do this and probably screw up the coffee because of all the things they need to remember. Think about how many people are served in a restaurant and how many things need to be ready and checked. Then in the dining room: are the flowers looking fresh?, table cloths clean and pressed? Crystal spottless?, Reservations confirmed, etc, etc, etc (it's a really long list, believe me). It's a lot of work. I know, I still think about it now, 6 years after getting out of fine dining. Remember if you srew up a $2.50 Latte, you may be forgiven and you'll probable see the customer again ... in a fine dining scenario if you screw up a $35.00 Veal Chop you're not seeing that customer again. 4. Depending on the restaurant, most managers want to flip tables. If the coffee is too good and becomes the main focus of the dinner ... people linger... second seating wait ... sales become less. I chose to do coffee right. And I'm impressed with what I read at the "eve restaurant" he should be applauded because he does more than anyone I've ever heard in fine dining. It truly is a rarity to get great coffee in fine dining but it certainly is possible. Nick I know you came from good intent on your comments and I think a few of you should go down and meet Nick at Murky's. He's truly committed to great coffee. It's what he specializes in. There are a few more reasons but it'll take me hours to give my opinion. Nick you're a class guy and I know you do a great job in coffee. Vin
  4. vin

    'Latte price war'?

    Sorry about all the spelling mistakes. I was running out the door while posting. I was late for my reservation at Il Giardino. What a beautiful restaurant to experience in the Summer in Vancouver. By far, in my opinion, the nicest patio in the city. Vin
  5. vin

    'Latte price war'?

    Actually Take 5 really started the 2 dollar latte thing. They did it to compete with us at Caffe Artigiano when we opened up our Hastings street cafe last year and they failed with the concept. Customers want quality and value together. You can't fool customers with discounts. There's usually a reason to lower your price on something... and that's to create some sort of traffic. (i.e. let's get them in, fool them with an inferior product and sell it cheap... and just when we get them hooked[they never do] we raise our prices up!) 2 dollar lattes don't work in our industry and are a stupid way of promoting growth in our industry. I for one would be willing to create an espresso with very rare coffees ( such as Yemen, sold exclusively to Saudi Royals only, double processed Australian Mountain top, and more rare gems) and use some really fine Organic dairy products and serve a $5 latte. I think if we created this option in a coffee house setting we would raise the level up and beyound what is present available. Why not have a normal priced coffee and more pricer coffees and let the customer choose? When we chooses wines we have a price range t choose from. Heck there's even a price range on water bottles. Thinking like this is what has Starbucks worried, not dicounted lattes!
  6. Sorry to inform you in Montreal that our deal with the Montreal company has not come to fruition and we regret that we will not be part of the opening to this cafe in Montreal. We will look into future expansion in the near future. Sorry to get all your hopes up in Montreal at this time. Vin
  7. Hi Winegeek, It is me Vince from Caffe Artigiano. Really looking frorward to changing the Montreal coffee scene. Mr. Fagioli, It's always very motivational for me to extend our product and services. I've been told since day one that we'd never make it. We'll see. Vin
  8. Hi Larry, I believe the area of the cafe is known as the Plateau, on avenue Mount Royal. Should be open in the Summer. If you have anymore comments or recommendations please feel free. Vin
  9. Hi all, Our coffee company is training a local Montreal company to open up Montreal's finest coffee house. We at Caffe Artigiano in Vancouver will be training them and supplying coffee for the cafe. What do you think? Is there a great need for a great coffee house in Montreal? What is needed in your market that you don't have? The name of the coffee house hasn't been decided yet but I'll post some info. once the opening gets nearer. would love to hear your comments. Thanks, Vin www.caffeartigiano.com
  10. Tommyo's off Broadway, My first job in the restaurant industry as a busboy. vin
  11. Come try our Hastings street location of Caffe Artigiano. It's at 740 W. Hastings, across from the Sinclair Centre. It's our largest location and it offers free WiFi. Ask the manager for the password. We have quite a few readers at this locations. The other locations are a little smaller and busier. vin
  12. Hi Andrew, Last time you ripped us in West Van, (I believe you said our bubble will burst or something along that line) I fired the staff member you complained about. I have put some of my best staff on board now in West Van. I know we went through a learning curve in West Van but to keep saying the service is abysmal after I have corrected the problem is not fair to the staff that are working there now. Please don't dwell on what happened to you a while back. We have worked non stop to fix whatever problems we had on opening. Your're in the restaurant business and should know that you don't have great days everyday. It's no excuse but bad things happen to great staff. I'd love to meet you one day and pick your brain. Where do you work? Is it in West Van? Also there is no dig at West Van. Each location is different. For instance Kerrisdale likes there milk generally hotter, West Van clients tend to be in more of a rush to get over the bridge, Downtown clients are also different in other ways. Not all clients are the same of course. All in all we try to run our coffeehouses the best we can. Vin
  13. Hi Mooshmouse, Nice to be on board. I am will Caffe Artigiano, but I work along side all baristas who would like to elevate the level of coffee in this city. By the way, I love Prado. Here is a cafe that is completely different from any cafe in the city (which is a nice change). Most new cafes are trying to copy some other cafe with either decor or art, but I must hand it to Prado, I feel like I'm in Soho when I'm at this cafe. Obviously minimilistic decor, but the people that run this cafe on Commercial drive sure love coffee and it shows. They've just opened up and I think they're doing a wonderful job. vin
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