4th july 7am-noonish open

July 4th, 2017

closing early. come by for coffee.

June 25th, 2017

Japanese shaved ice (Kakigori) will take off for real June 15th at the shop. Follow @ssshavedice on Instagram for the times and details as it gets close.

For a little background the shaved ice project starts with Sakiko, part owner of Courier. Her and i met at the coffee bar, later we got married at the coffee bar by David (funny guy who works in the morning), and so we became partners. Sakiko is an editor and writer in Japan, who came to Portland before Portland was known in Tokyo. One of Sakikos interests is Kakigori (shaved ice).

So we brought a manual Kakigori machine (Kakigoriki) back from Tokyo as a checked piece of luggage. Carrying a 56 pound machine on the train along with other luggage is tough. jumping in and out of trains, using the escalator. We ended up buying a little cart to make it easy, but traveling with a Kakigoriki is not, entirely, easy. Neither is, bringing this machine to Courier whenever we do shaved ice, or carrying it up the ladder to stow away. Thankfully we have a car, otherwise the machine, the crates, the 16 month old daughter- well, we have not talked about bike trailers yet.

Japanese shaved ice probably differs by style and the type of the machine from say, Hawaiian, or Vietnamese. The blade is very sharp high carbon tool steel which is meant to cut ribbons from crystal clear ice. This should produce almost “snowball making snow,” if the ice is too cold then it will produce powder- which won’t take any liquid if you pour condensed milk on top. Flavors commonly almost always include sweetened condensed milk as the sugary part. But if you want to really know, then you should come try it at Courier on the days we make.

a month ago when the power went out the blocks of ice in our freezer saved all of our other product. we moved these to the refrigerators and kept the temperature in the safe zone for food products.

Projects lately include digging through our 600 plus records at the roastery, trying to figure out their origins. We got a new Milwaukie corded drill and some rivets and have been refurbishing an old higgens toolbox. We are trying to refurbish our silca pumps- recently retapped the threads and have new leather. Piles of free firewood at the roastery from all our cut up palettes. and probably the most thrilling thing lately has been fixing the gate hinges for the backyard so that the latch always catches. we are very proud of this work as we accomplished it with zipties, a few beer caps, a bic pen tube, and brass compression nut.

the roastery is hot. its 80F now, but once we turn on the 1200F afterburning the room will hold at a 100F. its always summer at the roastery.

shop closed today due to power outage

May 23rd, 2017

there was a fire in an underground vault yesterday evening. we will be without power all today. hopefully enough ice in our fridges will keep them cold enough for the day.

May 15th, 2017

Last time we cut up the pallets. The next step was biking 300 pounds of pallette wood 5 miles deeper into southeast Portland. A normal 20 minute ride took one hour. We fell over three times on an uphill climb, once nearly missing a parked car. It was awesome. Distributed nice clean small cuts of wood to a community garden for their fire pit or building pleasure, then sections of partial cut palet with nails to my yard? for planting beds.

The coffee at Jackpot went super smooth- brewed all the coffee pourover style using gold plated filters from Zip. The first batch we attempted a different method- which while sludgy tasted great.

The last week we bled, and flushed the mineral oil from the cargo bikes rear Saint hydraulic brake line. super easy- nice and tight. except we ruined a half used set of pads. the oil was pretty dark. We pushed oil from the calipers up to the handlebars while keeping the line vertical. pushed some to flush out, and another to bottle up in the line. cleaned the ceramic pistons with some degreaser first and then a ton of rubbing alcohol before pressing them back in. lucky we have extra pads always for the saint pistons- although 50-60 dollars a pair, but the cargo bike needs those cooling fins on the pads for sure.

some may have noticed that we replaced our chairs downtown that were from IKEA (yellow)- with some vintage 1970′s chairs (orange). We are working very hard on those cheap yellow chairs with different disposable allen wrenches here at the shop. The issue with our orange chairs is that they are orange but the reason for the switch is because the yellow ones were falling apart.

May 1st, 2017

Installed a new Grove Gear wormgear reducer box on the SF-25 San Franciscan roaster, have not aligned the box properly yet to get a nice chainline. Last week our keystone worked itself loose and we scuffed up the paint a little re-setting the Martin 40 tooth sprockette, using an interesting tool steel spike like crowbar (oTc 7164). This was in order to line up the keyway. Too hasty installing the gearbox.

This week we cleaned out most of the 9-block pallets from inside the roastery. Since we cannot find a pallet person, or find a taker on craigslist for these things we had to cut them up for firewood. De-spelled the myth that pallette wood was soaked in chemicals by talking to a few folks, so its ok to use for a fire or woodstove. Must have been between 2-3 hundred pounds of wood we biked back home, turning a 20 minute ride into an hour. Cuts were made with an old Skillsaw which continued to cutout because the hot and ground wire kept connecting, our fix for this continued to get better.

The Shutter Precision dynamo hub on the cargo bike is working awesome. It is so sweet to have a rear and front light always on. We used a piece of chain from the roaster to hold the Supernova seatpost light firmly, and later some security screws for all. Very much thinking of making my next personal front hub a dynamo hub.

While we have the new coffee from Uganda, and two new Kenyan coffees we are still thinking about how best to roast them. Our espresso Guatemalan coffee continues to challenge us but lately its gotten a lot better- as it always does when there is less than a hundred pounds left (ASDEFLOR cooperative, Todos Santos Cuchumatan, Huehuetenango, Guatemala 2016 crop).

Brewing coffee for the line at Jackpot on Record Store Day went ok. Only was able to use one glass thermos, but the main challenge was pourover brewing such a huge amount. More than sure some of that coffee was made way too strong- but it got there- and it was the first preview of one of our two new Kenyan coffees. We brewed using gold plated steel Zip filters (Germany), into quart jars, grinding courser than normal and timing to 3 minute brews especially since we were using super super freshly roasted coffee. Decided wisely not to offer cream or sugar, but put the main effort into clear labeling of the farmer, and lot of coffee.

April 20th, 2017

sample roasted new crop Guatemalan coffees yesterday, we have locked in our order for two new coffees from Huehuetenango and its now a matter of shipping.

Free Courier Coffee this Saturday for the line at Record Store Day on Hawthornes Jackpot records. Unsure what to make- new Uganda coffee arrival? for this record store day we want to do something interesting- going against the grain. We know, and have pushed, stainless steel lined airpots (or thermoses). Pretty much every coffee shop and roaster in the city uses these because they tend to break less than glass thermoses, and can hold a little more volume. But glass keeps heat better, and also tastes better since there is no steel to react with the oils. Money over quality is what it breaks down too. sure your coffee is rad if you toss it every 40 minutes after brew, and honestly coffee that sits in a steel thermos for a few hours is surprisingly ok. but glass is best. so for this record store day we will be brewing ahead and serving in glass lined carafs.

We still expect new crop kenya and uganda in tomorrow. also we recieved more kenya and colombia samples last night which we will roast and cup today.

April 17th, 2017

the new teapots on bar are from Sanjo, Niigata, Japan. They were made to order, and are a product of our recent trip.

New white cups arrived today- Ancap- made in Italy. These will be our third round of cups for the shop, and our second time ordering Ancap. The first time we stocked ACF, or FAC in brown, along with Gretchen Vaudt’s hand made cups.

New crop Kenyas are in, well almost, they will arrive in Portland Friday, along with new crop Uganda coffee. Our Guatemalan samples got delayed but new crop Guatemala coffee is so so close. New lot of Sulawesi is also going to start being on bar at the end of the week.

At the roastery we have a new front wheel for the cargo bike- with a Shutter Precision dynamo hub, laced to a G-Sport ribcage rim. This is our first foray into Dynamo lighting, and we picked up Supernova front and rear lights. The mounting needs work but its going to be awesome, well, unless they get stolen.

We are swimming in pallets that no one wants to reuse (stacked inside our small space), time to make firewood.

lastly but most importantly Vanilla prices are crazy, despite that we give out Vanilla syrup as a courtesy, times are changing. Vanilla is very scarce after the category 5 hurricane wiped out 70% of Madagaskars Vanilla bean. We wholesale it for $375 a pound currently (eighty beans in a pound last count). Madagaskar produces over 90% of the worlds Vanilla. Did you know that Vanilla comes from an Orchid, and it takes three years for this orchid to bloom and when it does there is only a day the flower has to be pollinated.

soon soon-ccr

worm gear or gearbox for sanfranciscan sf-25

April 1st, 2017

Our coffee roaster uses a gearbox, wormgear, to take a fast moving motor and reduce speed in a 40-1 ratio, while also increasing torc. Worm gears have much more frictional force internally than straight gearing, and their benefit is that they are very compact, yet at the same time a little louder. even if you specify the same gearbox as a previous model you have there is more than just a model number that should be matched.

We are now on our second Vortex gearbox in 6 months (where our previous Morse-Emerson lasted 15 years). What we have learned is that efficiency of the gearbox and output torc changes differently with different brands as they heat up. a worm gear has a lot of friction and heats up quickly. Vortex is made in China, and perhaps the gearbox industry is not thriving there. we are now awaiting a Grove Gear wormgear- supposedly awesome, and it keeps the same output torc at start and when hot, where as the Vortex loses something like 55% of its output torc as it heats.

We do keep a logbook of the roaster maintenance, and the entry for this gearbox is much more in depth than what is written above. Its been two weeks on the intermediary Vortex and we bled the oil (which was filthy with metal shavings), flushed, and weighed in new oil. The Vortex leaks from the sightglass, and drips from the expansion valve whenever it is running, so we are looking forward to swapping it out as soon as possible.

turmoil

March 20th, 2017

kind of awesome that its all at one time.

our fridge broke, cargo bike wheel (not sure if they are bearings or sand), roaster stopped turning (fixed now), potential natural gas leak- turns out sewer leak (its ok), toilet seat held on by tape (fixed), espresso machine drain line leak ( ehh). sink faucet complete fail (fixed). thats a lot for us in a week.

we have a new colombian coffee and a new sulawesi shipping on wednesday. we have a bunch of new crop guatemalan samples shipping today.

other news my daughter can walk. she is a year and a month old. she is in japan and coming back soon. id like to attribute all the broken things at courier to good luck. its pretty rad that this all occurred in one week when we have time on our hands.

thank you all for being with us. best joel

Canele at courier coffee

March 11th, 2017

We make simple Canele (accent that last e for me).

Portland Monthly magazine did a lovely article in their latest, so we have been selling out of our 18 Canele that we make each morning in the first few hours.

We make all of our baked goods at the shop. Pasture eggs from the Obrist family (formerly Hermans Honey at Peoples Cooperative Wednesday market). there was a time we got our beeswax from them as well). Shepherds Grain low gluten flour, Creme Classic butter, Maldon salt, Sunshine Dairy whole milk, Madagascar vanilla bean, Meyers Rum, and GloryBee vegan cane sugar are what we use. Copper forms from France (courtesy of brittany and michael parich).

The forms are very special. Copper is expensive, but in France its a little cheaper. We are happy to sell out early because canele are better in the morning.

For those of you who come and find us sold out, we want you to know that our oven is a half sheet oven and only has three racks. We also hope you do get to try a fresh canele. best best