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Date: 13 Jan 2007 09:24:54
From: Geoff
Subject: Coffee Bar Set Up For Church
I am a pastor, an espresso drinker, a four year espresso brewer and
coffee roaster, and am giving thought to setting up a good coffee bar
in our church for weekend services, weekday office, and special event
use. We currently offer free drip coffee - store bought, pre-ground -
and it is pretty poor quality.

We need better coffee to keep people from falling asleep during my
sermons!

If we set up a coffee bar, I would like to offer quality drip
caffeinated and decaf for a modest price. I would also like to be able
to offer a limited number of espresso drinks for a modest - below
starbucks - price. We currently serve maybe 150 cups of coffee on a
weekend before or in-between services.

I don't think it makes sense in our case to have a coffee bar dependent
on a skilled barista. I would like it to be able to be operated by a
small team of lightly trained volunteers.

I know we could seriously up the level of drip coffee quality by buying
beans locally roasted and grind them as needed. I live in Pittsburgh.
We have a couple of good roasters in the city and an Intelligentsia
outlet for access to good beans.

I am familiar with semiautomatic machines and have a PID'd Silvia and
an Electra Semiautomatica for home use. I have Rocky and Macap 4
stepless grinders. So I know the importance of good grinders for
espresso.

I am wondering within those parameters would it make sense to get a
fully automatic machine? A couple grinders (decaf and caffinated)?

We probably would be willing to invest 3-5K in a setup like this, if it
could realistically pay for itself in a couple of years and then
generate some profit for mission projects, etc. The biggest reason to
do this is to strengthen an atmosphere that encourages conversation,
community and friendships.

Any thoughts?





 
Date: 14 Jan 2007 08:14:49
From:
Subject: Re: Coffee Bar Set Up For Church

Geoff wrote:
> I am a pastor, an espresso drinker, a four year espresso brewer and
> coffee roaster, and am giving thought to setting up a good coffee bar
> in our church for weekend services, weekday office, and special event
> use. We currently offer free drip coffee - store bought, pre-ground -
> and it is pretty poor quality.
>
> We need better coffee to keep people from falling asleep during my
> sermons!
>
> If we set up a coffee bar, I would like to offer quality drip
> caffeinated and decaf for a modest price. I would also like to be able
> to offer a limited number of espresso drinks for a modest - below
> starbucks - price. We currently serve maybe 150 cups of coffee on a
> weekend before or in-between services.
>
> I don't think it makes sense in our case to have a coffee bar dependent
> on a skilled barista. I would like it to be able to be operated by a
> small team of lightly trained volunteers.
>
> I know we could seriously up the level of drip coffee quality by buying
> beans locally roasted and grind them as needed. I live in Pittsburgh.
> We have a couple of good roasters in the city and an Intelligentsia
> outlet for access to good beans.
>
> I am familiar with semiautomatic machines and have a PID'd Silvia and
> an Electra Semiautomatica for home use. I have Rocky and Macap 4
> stepless grinders. So I know the importance of good grinders for
> espresso.
>
> I am wondering within those parameters would it make sense to get a
> fully automatic machine? A couple grinders (decaf and caffinated)?
>
> We probably would be willing to invest 3-5K in a setup like this, if it
> could realistically pay for itself in a couple of years and then
> generate some profit for mission projects, etc. The biggest reason to
> do this is to strengthen an atmosphere that encourages conversation,
> community and friendships.
>
> Any thoughts?

A Bunn maker would be good choice for a drip maker from what I've read.
For an espresso machine...

You can't go wrong with an Elecktra A3. They're beautiful machines and
if you're going to be pulling espresso and frothing lattes for a large
group and want a machine that'll keep up and the Elecktra will
definitely do that. With a plumbed in, what, a 4L boiler, good
proprietary grouphead design it has an excellent espresso potential
with a fairly skilled hand, fresh roast and good grinder. If I were
doing the pulling for large groups I'd chose the Elecktra. In fact
during my recent obsession to upgrade my home machine the Elektra A3
was at the top of my list. I tried one out and it proved to be too
much of a machine for what I was needing it for. The Astra Gourmet is
in the same category and for a really good volumetric dosing machine
the LaCimbali Jr is a good choice as well.

With a semi automatic you'll need space to grind, dose, tamp and deal
with some of the mess of hands on espresso and the guy pulling the
shots will be on his own for a while, I imagine, since you need to
focus on dosing, distributing, tamping, extracting and frothing. It
happens to me when family comes over and we serve espresso.

If you're not going to have a skilled hand most of the time making the
espresso a superautomatic might be better. I don't know much about
superautomatics but the consensus is that espresso quality is largely
sacrificed for convienience with one. So far super-superautomatics are
in the works but for now a good had, good fresh roast, good grind and
good semi automatic outperforms superautomatics for espresso quality.



 
Date: 14 Jan 2007 06:55:28
From: Gary B
Subject: Re: Coffee Bar Set Up For Church
On 13 Jan 2007 09:24:54 -0800, Geoff wrote:

> I am wondering within those parameters would it make sense to get a
> fully automatic machine? A couple grinders (decaf and caffinated)?
>
> We probably would be willing to invest 3-5K in a setup like this, if it
> could realistically pay for itself in a couple of years and then
> generate some profit for mission projects, etc. The biggest reason to
> do this is to strengthen an atmosphere that encourages conversation,
> community and friendships.
>
> Any thoughts?

Geoff,

A super auto makes sense to me under your conditions. You may also want to
consider the use of beans that promote more sustainable farming and labour
practices such as fair trade, rain forest alliance, bird friendly, organic,
etc - as long as they are good quality beans that taste good.

Regards, Gary


 
Date: 13 Jan 2007 17:55:50
From: Robert Harmon
Subject: Re: Coffee Bar Set Up For Church
Howdy Geoff!
Yeah I know, it's tough getting & holding their attention and a cup of
coffee/tea helps keep their peepers open during a long winded sermon. Or,
maybe the solution is to do better work on the services parson. ;)

Seriously, our congregation offers a free coffee bar for everyone's use. We
use freshly ground beans, commercial air pots & commercial style Bunn coffee
makers. We tried espresso machines but found the mess too much for
self-service. We decided against having volunteers manning the machines
because we want 'all' of our congregation to take advantage of the
socialization periods before & after services. Drinking or eating during the
services is discouraged for the sake of tidiness & sanitation.

Good luck,
Robert Harmon


"Geoff" <gchapman@ststephenschurch.net > wrote in message
news:1168709093.700329.35530@q2g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
>I am a pastor, an espresso drinker, a four year espresso brewer and
> coffee roaster, and am giving thought to setting up a good coffee bar
> in our church for weekend services, weekday office, and special event
> use. We currently offer free drip coffee - store bought, pre-ground -
> and it is pretty poor quality.
>
> We need better coffee to keep people from falling asleep during my
> sermons!
>
> If we set up a coffee bar, I would like to offer quality drip
> caffeinated and decaf for a modest price. I would also like to be able
> to offer a limited number of espresso drinks for a modest - below
> starbucks - price. We currently serve maybe 150 cups of coffee on a
> weekend before or in-between services.
>
> I don't think it makes sense in our case to have a coffee bar dependent
> on a skilled barista. I would like it to be able to be operated by a
> small team of lightly trained volunteers.
>
> I know we could seriously up the level of drip coffee quality by buying
> beans locally roasted and grind them as needed. I live in Pittsburgh.
> We have a couple of good roasters in the city and an Intelligentsia
> outlet for access to good beans.
>
> I am familiar with semiautomatic machines and have a PID'd Silvia and
> an Electra Semiautomatica for home use. I have Rocky and Macap 4
> stepless grinders. So I know the importance of good grinders for
> espresso.
>
> I am wondering within those parameters would it make sense to get a
> fully automatic machine? A couple grinders (decaf and caffinated)?
>
> We probably would be willing to invest 3-5K in a setup like this, if it
> could realistically pay for itself in a couple of years and then
> generate some profit for mission projects, etc. The biggest reason to
> do this is to strengthen an atmosphere that encourages conversation,
> community and friendships.
>
> Any thoughts?
>




  
Date: 13 Jan 2007 15:39:03
From: yetanotherBob
Subject: Re: Coffee Bar Set Up For Church
Hopefully the good Rev., if he takes the drip + airpot route (which
makes practical sense), will instruct the folks who clean up NOT to
commit the Cardinal Sin of getting the "flavored" airpots mixed up with
the "unflavored". It's always a major disappointment to pump out a cup
of what you think is going to be freshly-brewed moka-java blend coffee,
only to get a mouthful of vanilla-hazelnut-oreo-frappe instead.

To serve those in the congregation who need something a bit stronger, I
don't know whether it qualifies as a "good" super-auto, but Costco.com
has the Saeco Magic Comfort Plus machine on sale through 1/28 for $700
"delivered".

Fwiw, amen.

Bob
======================
In article <G29qh.9472$pQ3.6915@newsread4.news.pas.earthlink.net >,
r_h_harmon@Zhotmail.com says...
> Howdy Geoff!
> Yeah I know, it's tough getting & holding their attention and a cup of
> coffee/tea helps keep their peepers open during a long winded sermon. Or,
> maybe the solution is to do better work on the services parson. ;)
>
> Seriously, our congregation offers a free coffee bar for everyone's use. We
> use freshly ground beans, commercial air pots & commercial style Bunn coffee
> makers. We tried espresso machines but found the mess too much for
> self-service. We decided against having volunteers manning the machines
> because we want 'all' of our congregation to take advantage of the
> socialization periods before & after services. Drinking or eating during the
> services is discouraged for the sake of tidiness & sanitation.
>
> Good luck,
> Robert Harmon
>
>
> "Geoff" <gchapman@ststephenschurch.net> wrote in message
> news:1168709093.700329.35530@q2g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
> >I am a pastor, an espresso drinker, a four year espresso brewer and
> > coffee roaster, and am giving thought to setting up a good coffee bar
> > in our church for weekend services, weekday office, and special event
> > use. We currently offer free drip coffee - store bought, pre-ground -
> > and it is pretty poor quality.
> >
> > We need better coffee to keep people from falling asleep during my
> > sermons!
> >
> > If we set up a coffee bar, I would like to offer quality drip
> > caffeinated and decaf for a modest price. I would also like to be able
> > to offer a limited number of espresso drinks for a modest - below
> > starbucks - price. We currently serve maybe 150 cups of coffee on a
> > weekend before or in-between services.
> >
> > I don't think it makes sense in our case to have a coffee bar dependent
> > on a skilled barista. I would like it to be able to be operated by a
> > small team of lightly trained volunteers.
> >
> > I know we could seriously up the level of drip coffee quality by buying
> > beans locally roasted and grind them as needed. I live in Pittsburgh.
> > We have a couple of good roasters in the city and an Intelligentsia
> > outlet for access to good beans.
> >
> > I am familiar with semiautomatic machines and have a PID'd Silvia and
> > an Electra Semiautomatica for home use. I have Rocky and Macap 4
> > stepless grinders. So I know the importance of good grinders for
> > espresso.
> >
> > I am wondering within those parameters would it make sense to get a
> > fully automatic machine? A couple grinders (decaf and caffinated)?


 
Date: 13 Jan 2007 17:51:55
From: Marshall
Subject: Re: Coffee Bar Set Up For Church
On 13 Jan 2007 09:24:54 -0800, "Geoff" <gchapman@ststephenschurch.net >
wrote:

>I am a pastor, an espresso drinker, a four year espresso brewer and
>coffee roaster, and am giving thought to setting up a good coffee bar
>in our church for weekend services, weekday office, and special event
>use. We currently offer free drip coffee - store bought, pre-ground -
>and it is pretty poor quality.
>
>We need better coffee to keep people from falling asleep during my
>sermons!
>

>We probably would be willing to invest 3-5K in a setup like this, if it
>could realistically pay for itself in a couple of years and then
>generate some profit for mission projects, etc. The biggest reason to
>do this is to strengthen an atmosphere that encourages conversation,
>community and friendships.
>
>Any thoughts?

Yes. Get a good commercial superautomatic machine. You don't want the
aggravation of training and managing your well-meaning church members
as baristas.

shall