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Hello, and welcome to the Grumpy Mule Coffee Blog.

Here the daily - and when things get a little bit chaotic, weekly – thoughts, feelings and general rants of Ian and Damian will be displayed in their raw state. We’ll do our very best to keep all of our entries coffee related, though it’s possible that we’ll go off on sideways tangents occasionally; that’s stream of conscious thought for you.

  • London Thru Cafes

    Fri 10 February, 2012
    London Thru Cafes London Thru Cafes

    It was a pleasure to meet Chris and Karola at the Tamper coffee evening last night, coffee and cafe entusiasts who've developed the London Thru Cafes website and app.

    Please see Karola's fantastic blogpost on the evening London Thru Cafes blogpost on the Tamper Coffee tasting evening

    Or you can just visit their excellent website and sign up for the London Thru Cafes App!

  • Tamper Coffee Tasting Evening, Sheffield

    Fri 10 February, 2012
    Damian Blackburn & Grumpy Mule at Tamper Coffee Damian Blackburn & Grumpy Mule at Tamper Coffee

    Last night the Grumpy Mule Team joined Tamper Coffee - Sheffield's finest coffee shop - for a customer tasting evening. Tamper use Boutique for their in house espresso, plus a guest which at present is the Colombia Gaitania from the Tolima region. The event proved a great success which is credit to Jonathan for creating such an immediate buzz around Tamper after less than 6 months of opening. His knowledge and experience of New Zealand's coffee scene and his focus on quality and community are integral in this, and also the reason why coffee enthusiasts from outside Sheffield are making the journey to find it.

    The room was absolutely packed, showing the enthusiasm for people to find out more about where their coffee comes from and to experience new aromas and flavours. We love being involved in evenings like this and are already looking forward to the next event.

    If you haven't visited already, it's a must see place.

    Flight 1: introduction to flavour development and coffees origins

    Sethuran Estate PN Robusta, Sethuraman Estate Natural Liberica, Guatemala San Julian #18, Bolivian Buena Vista Cascara

    Flight 2: Discovering more about the importance of processing and varietal

    Ethiopia Tchembe N2, Brasil Daterra "Antique", Brasil Daterra PN "Blue Earth", Guatemala Injerto Pacamara, Panama Esmeralda Special Geisha

  • Holmfirth Arts Festival: Street Pianos

    Fri 27 May, 2011

    I’ve been helping out recently with the Street Piano project for the Homfirth Arts Festival, which has been both fun and very intriguing! The Fair Traders Co-operative has been instrumental in finding old pianos from the local area that can be jazzed up ready for the Festival itself, taking place in June. There’ll be lots going on during those few weeks to keep locals and visitors interested. Here’s how the event has been described, but we’ll keep you up to date as the time approaches:

    The streets of Holmfirth will be alive with the sound of piano music during June this year. For over two weeks, as part of Holmfirth Arts Festival, pianos will be placed around the centre of Holmfirth for festival-goers to stroll up and play. Holmfirth Arts Festival and The Fair Traders Co-operative are working together to develop this event and to make it exciting, engaging and unique, with opportunities for all to take part and to enjoy the sound of impromptu piano performances across the town.

    Throughout Holmfirth Arts Festival, which runs from June 11th to 26th, five upright pianos will be positioned around the streets of Holmfirth for anyone and everyone to make use of. The project provides an open invitation for the passing public to tinkle those ivories and air their talents! Even those with no piano-playing prowess are welcome to have a go – the idea is to make music and have fun for fair trade and for the Festival. It is hoped that...

  • Laynes Espresso Now Open in Leeds City Centre

    Wed 25 May, 2011
    Laynes Espresso Laynes Espresso

    For anyone who loves coffee, and especially those in West Yorkshire, you must go and pay a visit to the new Laynes Espresso coffee bar on New Station Street in the city centre of Leeds. Opened by the hugely respected barista Dave Olejnik, the place looks great and backed up by some of the best coffee in the region,

    When I popped in on Friday’s first day opening, they were serving up a sparkling Yirgacheffe single origin espresso through their Synesso machine, roasted by Square Mile.

    Well worth a visit when you’re in the area and an important landmark on the north's coffee map.

  • New Probat Sample Roaster

    Wed 25 May, 2011
    Probat Sample Roaster Probat Sample Roaster

    For those who heard that my beloved, old sample coffee roaster had been (very) out of action for a few weeks then there’s great news today – a brand new, double barrel sample roaster has arrived from Probat in Germany and I’m very happy indeed. The small capacity sample roaster is one of the most important pieces of equipment for any Roastery, especially when used in tandem with daily cuppings, so whilst I’d managed to “borrow” an alternative bit of kit (long story) it’s nice to be back in a more familiar saddle.

    If the El Injerto auction samples arrive from Guatemala this week, then they could be featuring in the new roasters’ debut performance. What a lucky bit of cast iron with lots of samples and trial roasts over the coming weeks.

    New Colombini grinder also in place in the Mule Roastery today and hopefully that’ll be up and running in the next few days.

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Grumpy Mule, The Roastery, Meltham, Holmfirth, United Kingdom HD9 4EP
Tel: 01484 855500  Email: coffee@grumpymule.co.uk

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