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onocoffee

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    Towson, MD
  1. mkayahara - Where does it come from? It's what I use. It's what we serve. And people like it. Bear in mind that weight is only one variable. Grind is just as important, as is water temp and brew time. On top of all that, coffee freshness and roast profile are important factors. Your best bet is to experiment with a baseline standard. Find some really great, quality coffee that's fresh and give it a try. Make sure your water temp is proper and the grind is right and you're on your way. And is 24 grams really that much more expensive? Let's presume you're buying coffee at $17/lb. The cost difference between 19g v. 24g is nineteen cents. The yield difference between the two is 24 cups v. 19 cups per pound. But really, the most important thing is taste. Find the ratio that works for you. It's that simple.
  2. If you don't mind me saying, I think that some of the steps you're taking are just clouding the issue for you. One doesn't need to go very far for great coffee - especially in Zionsville. Not too far away is a place called Souderton and a roaster called One Village Coffee Roasters. Go there. Talk to them. Ask them for ideas, brewing techniques and suggestions on coffees to try. Honestly, buying grocery store coffee is generally asking to be disappointed. Get fresh coffee from people who care. Already you've got the temperature issue solved with the Technivorm. How about coffee quantity? Do you have a scale? Scales make consistent brewing much easier to achieve. I recommend 2 grams of ground coffee per finished ounce. Meaning: if you are brewing a 12 ounce cup you use 24 grams of coffee. As someone else said, grind size is also incredibly important. If you go to One Village for a visit, maybe they can help you with a visual reference? When guests ask me about grind size, I try to give them a sample of the grind we use to help them match at home. Ideally, with 200F water, 2g ratio coffee, you want to have a total brew time of four minutes. Try to achieve those parameters and I think you'll find a nice cup of coffee waiting for you. The next problem will be finding the actual beans you will rave about.
  3. As an owner, the options are aplenty. First off, I don't what level of restaurant this place aspires to be but if it's doing prime rib and the like, perhaps it's fine dining? If that is the case, then this is underscored even more. What we do is about hospitality. It's accommodating guest desires. And while other owner/chefs many not share this sentiment fully, it is the essence of what we do. No operation is perfect and certainly that chef/owner could have been having a terrible day which led to his response. Restaurants will have their off-dishes or off-days, but does the chef/owner see the opportunity when a guest comes with criticisms? It's difficult to hear criticisms when you're trying your best to create a great guest experience, and many of my peers absolutely HATE places like yelp and other review sites because of it. However, I see these as opportunities to expand the guest experience. In the moment, in front of the guest, it can be difficult to maintain composure, but one must. The bottom line is that a guest is disappointed somehow with the experience and remembering that most people will say that everything was just "fine", that those who are willing to speak frankly are to be listened to and considered. A simple "I'm sorry to hear that [about your potatoes/oysters], can I bring you another round?" should suffice. Or "thank you for telling me these concerns." For the most part, people just want to be heard. They want to know you're listening to what they are saying. That what they say has some weight and validity. Maybe it does and maybe it doesn't. The wise operator listens, acknowledges and takes those comments under consideration. It doesn't mean that things will necessarily change (or need to) due to an untold variety of factors. Later, if you're writing to the owner/chef, or if he's responding to comments on a website and he still acts like that, then he's a complete and utter fool. Written responses, unlike in-person responses, give the owner/chef the opportunity to get over whatever anger he's feeling about the comments and craft a thoughtful and carefully written response that demonstrates to other readers the care and understanding the owner/chef has about the business and its guests. I'd say write the review from a neutral standpoint, stating all the facts and then leave it at that. Never go back to that restaurant again. Four times per month? You now have the opportunity to try 48 new restaurants over the next year!
  4. As a side note, I happened to stop by a friends restaurant the other day and their curing room is running at 53F and 80% humidity.
  5. I would avoid going to the health department first. Chances are they won't know what you're talking about, will have a fit about it and will generally make your life difficult. Want even more problems? Try asking them about controlled temperature cooking via sous vide - not fun. Better to gather your data and go for it, then battle the sanitarian later with the data if they challenge you during an inspection. I would contact directly some of the chefs in the nation who are doing this in-house, they would be better prepared to offer advice and guidance in setting up your walk-in. The ones I have toured have both temperature control (60F seems to stick in my mind) and humidity control. Good luck!
  6. Not sure if this is the right place, but was wondering if anyone had any experiences with the Sodir or Cadco/Unox line of tabletop 1/4 sheet and 1/2 sheet convection ovens? Looking to purchase one soon and have heard good things about the Sodir. My experiences with the Hohman line find it breaking down on a somewhat regular basis.
  7. As one who has found the El Bulli books to be pricey - pricey enough that obtaining the entire collection would be a serious commitment to financing, I did go out and buy the Big Fat Duck Cookbook. It was expensive, as was the Alinea book, but the BFDC is still giving returns on that investment. If your work will surpass that of Roca, Blumenthal, Adria, Achatz and Keller, then I think it will be worth it. And after seeing your presentation at Star Chefs, I only wish it were ready today. One thing I caution: while the Big Fat Duck Cookbook is cool, it's just so darn big (ditto for Gordon Ramsay's *** Chef), even the Alinea book is on the large, unwieldy side. It wasn't until Heston came out with the "regular" sized Fat Duck Cookbook that I was able to keep it with me and read it at my leisure wherever I happened to be. That made all the difference in the world as far as being able to readily and easily consume the information.
  8. When in Paris, I quite enjoy eating at: Chez L'Ami Jean Chez Pierrot Robert y Louise The first two are very close to where I usually stay in the 7th but all are worth the trip. I wish I was going this month!
  9. Just arrived at the Rosales Plaza and looking for really good traditional Colombian cuisine. Fine dining is not necessary but delicious flavor is a must. We will eat and try anywhere as long as the food is tasty. Just here until Tuesday morning. Thanks!
  10. I'm hoping someone here can direct me to a wholesale source for those metal tea caddies. The ones I'm thinking of seem very traditional to me - they're metal with both and outer and inner cap and sort of look like old metal milk vessels. Sorry if my description is lost in translation. I've searched Google for metal tea caddy but haven't had much luck. I'm looking for a source where I can buy a dozen of them. Thanks!
  11. I don't know your previous experiences in America, but when I travel to other countries, I like to eat as natively as possible. In other words, eating as the locals do. Maybe you're the type who likes to eat at the high-end establishments, if so, there are plenty of options to choose from that many here will guide you towards. But for my money, a visit to Maryland and Baltimore should be taken. Admittedly, Baltimore doesn't have the refinement and stature of the other two cities that boast many fancy restaurants with big name celebrity chefs, but Baltimore has it's own beauty worthy of discovering. While I almost never go there, people still rave about Lexington Market and their many vendors. Berger Cookies are an institution here that is so a part of Baltimore that it's a must in care packages sent worldwide. Baltimore people love fried stuff, whether it's the perennial Chicken Box or Lake Trout (which is neither trout nor from a lake). Lightly battered chicken or fish, deep fried till crisp and served with french fries. It can be delightful. Crabs are a must and while many will direct you to Baltimore City, I prefer a nice drive out to the river docks of the Magothy Crab Deck. There you'll tear open freshly steamed crabs by the dozen on an open-air picnic table with sides of fries, hush puppies and pitchers of beer. If you're feeling a bit adventurous, you'll cross the Bay Bridge on the weekend and search the parking lots and churches for the familiar white smoke of chicken on the grill. It's a tradition in these parts to sell bbq chicken as a fundraiser and the chicken is always moist, delicious and never makes it further than three miles. If you let us know more about your preferences, I think it will make it easier to offer recommendations.
  12. I don't know your previous experiences in America, but when I travel to other countries, I like to eat as natively as possible. In other words, eating as the locals do. Maybe you're the type who likes to eat at the high-end establishments, if so, there are plenty of options to choose from that many here will guide you towards. But for my money, a visit to Maryland and Baltimore should be taken. Admittedly, Baltimore doesn't have the refinement and stature of the other two cities that boast many fancy restaurants with big name celebrity chefs, but Baltimore has it's own beauty worthy of discovering. While I almost never go there, people still rave about Lexington Market and their many vendors. Berger Cookies are an institution here that is so a part of Baltimore that it's a must in care packages sent worldwide. Baltimore people love fried stuff, whether it's the perennial Chicken Box or Lake Trout (which is neither trout nor from a lake). Lightly battered chicken or fish, deep fried till crisp and served with french fries. It can be delightful. Crabs are a must and while many will direct you to Baltimore City, I prefer a nice drive out to the river docks of the Magothy Crab Deck. There you'll tear open freshly steamed crabs by the dozen on an open-air picnic table with sides of fries, hush puppies and pitchers of beer. If you're feeling a bit adventurous, you'll cross the Bay Bridge on the weekend and search the parking lots and churches for the familiar white smoke of chicken on the grill. It's a tradition in these parts to sell bbq chicken as a fundraiser and the chicken is always moist, delicious and never makes it further than three miles. If you let us know more about your preferences, I think it will make it easier to offer recommendations.
  13. john- I enjoy places like Woodberry, Dogwood, Fiesta Mexicana, Grace Garden and the old Chicken Box in Cross Street Market. I've been to a number of the "fancy" high-end restaurants, like L'Arpege, Alinea and per se, but I've always been a fan of the plain kind of places.
  14. Went to our local "French" bistro recently and noticed on their menu: Steak Maison - steak frites with fries. I almost walked out right there.
  15. I'm building a new facility and while I've used Hoshi sushi cases and ice machines in the past, I'm mainly stuck with True and BevAir for refrigeration. Any thoughts on Hoshi prep tables and reach ins? Good, bady, ugly?
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