Posts Tagged 'Coffee Master'

9.20.08

Two more coffee tastings today. Both multi-region blends– French Roast and Italian Roast.

The French Roast I did not like at all. It is without a doubt the worst I’ve ever tasted– EXTREMELY dark, bold and bitter. Tasted like I would imagine an ash tray tasting– a very burnt taste. This is Starbuck’s darkest roast and I’m not sure who would like it and why.

The Italian Roast however was a whole different experience, which is kind of odd since these two blends are so similar. Both go well with caramelized sugar. The Italian goes well with roasted vegetables.

I also tasted a Green Tea Frappuccino and LOVED IT! I just may have a new favorite and that’s exactly why you sample to customers. I would NEVER have tried it– it’s GREEN. Why would I want to drink something GREEN?!? However, I sampled the leftover from a customer’s drink and was pleasantly surprised. You should try a Green Tea Frappuccino with extra whip ๐Ÿ™‚

Next week I will start working on my Tea Passport.

9.19.08

GREAT game last night! Couldn’t have been any better. The moral of the story: If you can’t control the refs, whine about the line judges and if that doesn’t work, question the score. Enough said…

Two coffee tastings today: Yukon and Gold Coast. Both are multi-region blends from the regions of Latin America and the Asian Pacific.

Yukon Blend is a medium bodied, hearty and well-rounded blend similar to Caffe Verona. Yukon goes well with cinnamon, raisins, oatmeal and chocolate. But all that doesn’t really matter because it is being discontinued. That’s OK, I really didn’t like it at all.

Gold Coast Blend is a complex full-bodied, intense blend. It’s one of the finest Latin America/Asian Pacific blends. It too is similar to Caffe Verona and goes well with maple, chocolate, caramel and cheesecake. This so far is my favorite blend. I truely enjoyed it!

Tomorrow I will have a coffee tasting with French Roast and Italian Roast and then my coffee passport will be finished.

As a Starbucks employee you are encouraged to complete one of these coffee passports every 90 days. I have done it in a month. WHEW!

A 3-mile walk through the city with my bff early afternoon. So nice when your bff comes home early from work and drags you away from your work to take you on a long walk through the city on such a nice, sunny, breezy, clear blue sky of an afternoon ๐Ÿ™‚ so nice!

Tonight, Sari Beri made the Barefoot Contessa’s Outrageous Brownies with 1 lb. of butter and 1 lb. + of chocolate and they are OUTRAGEOUS!

Outrageous Brownies

1 pound unsalted butter
1 pound plus 12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips, divided
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
6 extra-large eggs
3 tablespoons instant coffee powder
2 tablespoons real vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided (1 cup for batter and 1/4 cup in the chips and nuts)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3 cups diced walnut pieces

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 13 by 18 by 1 1/2-inch sheet pan.Melt together the butter, 1 pound chocolate chips, and unsweetened chocolate on top of a double boiler. Cool slightly. Stir together the eggs, instant coffee, vanilla and sugar. Stir in the warm chocolate mixture and cool to room temperature.

Stir together 1 cup of the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to cooled chocolate mixture. Toss the walnuts and 12 ounces of chocolate chips with 1/4 cup flour to coat. Then add to the chocolate batter. Pour into prepared pan.

Bake for about 30 minutes, or until tester just comes out clean. Halfway through the baking, rap the pan against the oven shelf to allow air to escape from between the pan and the brownie dough. Do not over-bake! Cool thoroughly, refrigerate well and cut into squares.

Click here for the recipe from FoodNetwork.com.

9.18.08

I hope I never, never, never, never, NEVER talk on my cell phone while someone is waiting on me like checking out at the grocery store or STARBUCKS or whereever– that is so very rude. Ok, enough said about that.

Two coffee tastings today, both multi-region blends from the regions of Africa and Latin America, one organic: Cafe Estima and Serena Organic.

Cafe Estima is a bold but smooth blend and goes well with nuts, cocoa and caramel. It’s a Fair Trade coffee and has low acidity and full body resulting in a smooth, velvetyย  mouth feel with a roasty-sweet finish.

Serena Organic is a medium bodied roast and even before I read about it I could really pick up on the citrus tones in the coffee. It goes well with citrus, nuts and tart fruits. It’s a complex yet approachable blend offering medium-bodied balance, crisp acidity and citrus flavor with subtle floral notes. That’s what it says in the coffee passport.

Tomorrow I hope to do aย  tasting with Yukon and Gold Coast blends, both Asian Pacific and Latin American.

I had that funny thing happen to me again where a customer has a Starbucks card but not enough on it to pay for their order and they want to reload the card and pay for the order with a $20. So today, since the order was already rung [as usual when you get into this situation], I paid for the order with what was left on the card, paid the rest of the order from the $20. cash, then, in a separate transaction, I reloaded the card with the remaining change. That seems to work for me, you don’t have to back out of the transaction already in progress and the customer gets their discount [assuming it’s a registered card].

9.16.08

Well, the Arabian Mocha Sanani is out of stock so having completed all of the Africa/Arabia coffees in my passport I moved on to the Asia/Pacific and had a coffee tasting this a.m. with Sulawesi [Sula Way See]. I really like this coffee and think it’s probably my favorite so far. It’s a full bodied BOLD coffee grow on Indonesia’s largest island and is considered Indonesia’s most elegant coffee. Sulawesi has an earthy aroma with a complex flavor and herbal notes. I like the way it moves in the cup.

Now I have only the blends to taste to complete my coffee passport– 6 of them to be exact:

  • Cafe Estima
  • Serena Organic
  • Yukon
  • Gold Coast
  • Italian Roast
  • French Roast

Will do 2 on Thursday, 2 Friday and 2 Saturday– assuming they are all in stock.

This a.m. I set up a “breakfast table” in the cafe complete with a fall table cloth, real dishes, coffee cups and saucers, a French press with coffee, bagel and butter, banana and the guest of honor– our Perfect Oatmeal along with the available mix-ins: brown sugar, nuts and dried fruit. It was a work of art! Wish I had taken a pic. We had several customers comment on the inviting appeal of the table setting. Makes you just want to sit down and have breakfast all over again. Maybe I’ll take a pic tomorrow. Sari Beri and I will be there for our weekly breakfast outing ๐Ÿ™‚

Customer Recovery: Customer recovery is a BIG deal at Starbucks! If for ANY reason a customer is not enthusiastically happy, you go into “Recovery” mode. Today, one of my customers ordered a Tall coffee, another drink and a pastry. He wanted to pay for the items with his Starbucks card, but knew he didn’t have enough money on the card to pay for it all. So, he also wanted to re-load the card, and do this all with a $20 bill. The card was a registered Starbucks card so the customer would receive a .40 discount on the second drink he ordered [the cost of the syrup in that drink]. Of course I didn’t know all this until after I had rang the order. Had I know all of the circumstances up front, I would have first put the $20 on the Starbucks card and then in a separate transaction rang the order and paid for it using the registered card. As is turned out, I rang the order then he gives me his card telling me there’s not enough money on the card and a $20 bill and wants to pay for the order and re-load the card and this is where it gets very confusing. I was going to just start over and do it right, however, another Barista steeped in and she ended up completing the transaction in an odd way that prevented the customer from receiving his .40 discount for the syrup. He was not happy and made some complaint which she ignored– after all, it’s just .40, right? NO! It’s an unhappy customer. It’s not at all about the .40. SO, instead of giving him a Tall coffee, which he paid for, I promptly turned around, poured him a Venti coffee, and apologized with a smile asking him if he’d like to have the Venti coffee instead since he didn’t receive his .40 discount. He was enthusiastically happy ๐Ÿ™‚ That’s Customer Recovery as I understand it. Whatever it takes to make sure the customer leave with a smile on their face.

9.15.08

Today’s coffee tasting was Organic Shade Grown MEXICO. It’s a medium body coffee with a bright flavor and goes good with nuts and orange– kind of a nutty after taste and similar to Breakfast Blend. I brewed it myself for the first time using a coffee press. I also set up the pastry case for the first time all by my little self today. It looked so nice I even took a picture ๐Ÿ˜ฎ Whoo Hoo…

I’m done with the Latin American coffees in my coffee passport and will move on tomorrow to the African/Arabia coffees. There is just one left to taste there and that is Arabian Mocha Sanani. It’s an exotic BOLD coffee and I look forward to tasting that.

Favorite quote of the day: Twauana, “Dana, you and Patsy look just alike from the back with those pigtails…” Dana is like 18. So sorry Dana.

5 miles on the mill late a.m. and sweating like a pig with pigtails ๐Ÿ˜ฎ


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