Thursday, July 31

Coffee Video Thursday #6: Arnold Schwarzenegger for Go West Coffee  

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Before being the Governor of California, and during the height of his acting career, Arnold Schwarzenegger did some short commercials for this Go West Coffee of Japan. It's just a short commercial but it's 80s and is actually quite funny. The Terminator was drinking 3 straight cans of coffee, it looks like that coffee wasn't that strong. Maybe he thought it was an energy drink of some sort. Go West? Hmmm..Wasn't there a song that was quite popular and was entitled "Go West"?

Tickle Away to a Great Day!

Wednesday, July 30

Starbucks in Australia to Close Majority of its Stores  

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Looks like more bad news for Starbucks as there will be plans to close majority of its underperforming stores in Australia. By August 3, 61 of its 84 stores will be closing as the coffee giant will try to focus on bigger cities which are Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

According to Schultz:

the decision to shut the stores reflected problems specific to the country and did not reflect "the strong state of Starbucks business in countries outside of the United States."

There are no other international markets that need to be addressed in this manner," he said. His statement reportedly followed a key telephone discussion between Starbucks executives in Australia and the United States.

Ed's Notes: More bad news for Starbucks but as a coffee lover, I just hope its just a "one step backward and a two steps forward" thing. I think they will recover since Howard Schultz is a visionary and he really knows the business. They just need to focus more and listen to the people and address their needs. They will be fine but the growth will be far from what they experienced before. This has been talked about a lot before, how about you? Do you think they will be fine or would just continue having problems?

Source: AFP

Tuesday, July 29

New Contact Form for Coffee Tickle  

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Coffee Ticklers who would want to leave a comment/suggestion or just drop a message to say hi you may use this form. I'm trying it out, hopefully it doesn't affect any loading speed. I would appreciate any comments/suggestions and I will try to use them in my blog to further improve it. Thanks! Tickle Away to a Great Day!

Coffee Mug Tuesday: Show off Your Coffee Mugs (5th Mug)  

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For this week's Coffee Mug Tuesday, I saw some cool coffee mugs from wickedcoolstuff.com and I want to share them with you. Some of the are really cool and I am sure you will agree with me. Hope you enjoy this week's coffee mugs. Here are the mugs..

This is a mug for coffee addicts. This mug has a chalkboard style write-on surface - pre printed with a checklist. It even comes with a box of chalk, cool huh?

Coffee Mug Image

Looking to boss your new co-worker around? Try this "Ring Bell for Refill" Mug and ring it when it's time for him to get you a refill.

Coffee Mug Image

Let this stressed out looking coffee mug feel all the stress, not you! Just enjoy this mug while it holds your favorite drink. Also a perfect gift for your stressed out friend.

Coffee Mug Image

It's hard not to love this mug! It's Homer Simpson, everyone's favorite cartoon dad! Coffee drinking is just fun when you know the Simpsons are around.

Coffee Mug Image

Monday, July 28

Coffee Comics To Start Your Week  

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Just wanted to share with you a coffee comic strip to start your week right. I found this at www.ineedcoffee.com by Phil Juliano. Hope you enjoy it! Have a great week everyone!

How To Create a Distinct Brand For My Coffee Shop (Part 2)  

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I graduated as a marketing major but I haven't really applied that yet into the corporate world or in business. I have been thinking what can possibly make your coffee different from the rest. A lot of coffee shops look the same, have the same feel and they just don't have any distinction from one another. Let me make some suggestions in hopes that you could use them in helping you in your coffee shop. These suggestions may not work but just give them a try. Here is my list:

1. Always keep in mind that you don't have to be better, you have to be different. Find your niche in the coffee shop world. When you are already different, try to be the best in that niche so people can remember you.

2. You have to have a unique design that will stand out against your competitor. We know that a lot of coffee shops look the same so why not create a coffee shop that is a brighter with less earth tones but something that would still make them feel welcome. Make your baristas look diffent let's say make them wear some retro outfit or like a schoolboy outfit. You can try looking like Will Ferrell in Semi Pro but I wouldn't suggest being that wild. It might look weird but it will definitely get your city talking about you and hopefully get featured in the local news (first!) but it is important that you...

3. Treat your customers with respect and make them feel at home. Don't make a fool out of your customers. As mentioned in my previous article by Kim T. Gordon: "by learning the names of your frequent customers, you'll make them feel welcome."

4. You can also create a different kind of rewards program, different from all those buy 10 and you get 1 free. Why not tie up with a foundation, and for every cup of coffee you buy a certain percentage will go to this certain foundation and when you get 15 or something, that's when you get a free cup. But remember to always compute your costs, we don't want to give away everything here.

5. Speaking of tie ups, to be different you may also tie up with an organization for teens to help promote coffee. It would really be nice to see teens drinking coffee at night instead of drinking alcohol. Crazy idea? Why not?

6. A lot of coffee shops don't have any presence online. The internet is a really powerful tool. Differentiate through this, let your city know that you're in their area. Then the next step is to let people from other places go to your coffee shop.

7. Know matter how big or small you are, it is important to listen to your customers. Listen to their suggestions and comments and you will make them loyal to you. Sadly, a lot of companies do have a suggestion box but they don't listen to them. Make this your priority and you will learn a lot about your market. Besides, it is like having a conversation over coffee..a lot of things can be said..you just have to listen.

8. Look for different kinds of coffee around the world. Be the first to introduce that to your local community and be known for it. For those who have a sweet tooth, create a different kind of drink that they will love (you may want to test it first with them).

9. Train your baristas well! Let them understand what they are doing and it will be easier. Let them appreciate coffee and that will help them understand more. Teach them the techniques and when taking orders don't make them rush the customers (unlike other coffee shops).

10. And of course, don't forget to make great coffee! This is what they came in for the first place. Give the people what they want and that is great tasting coffee..the aroma..the taste..the flavor..just coffee!

Hope you learned a thing a two here and hopefully you can start a coffee shop business soon. If you do have one, maybe this can help you improve what you have started. Again, these suggestions may or may not work but what is important is to try. Again, distinguish through differentiation and extinguish the competition. Goodluck to everyone and have a great day!

New Template and Logo for Coffee Tickle  

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First, I'd like to thank everyone who has viewed and subscribed to Coffee Tickle. It has been an exciting and fulfilling first month and a half of blogging and I am looking forward to writing/posting and sharing with your anything coffee related or just about anything as long as I can and as long as you support me (I know you will). This has been a great experience for me and it has been a pleasure having a coffee tickle moment with everyone.

Second, I had to change my template because I really felt that it was really cluttered. I just couldn't choose the right one but I felt that this would be really nice even if it is the same with my other blog Pinoy Coffee Tickle(Please support that one too if you want to learn more about the Philippines). I also updated my logo, which is the logo I use for my Entrecard. So what do you think of the new template, logo and feel? Should I stick with it or use another one?

Comments and suggestions are really welcome and appreciated. Send them to coffeetickle@gmail.com. Thanks so much for the continued support! Hoping for more Coffee Ticklers out there! Let's all have some fun a have a great day with coffee. Tickle Away to a Great Day!

Oh by the way, I am still doing the Part 2 of my "How To Create a Distinct Brand For My Coffee Shop" entry. It will be up within the day...:)

Saturday, July 26

How To Create a Distinct Brand For My Coffee Shop (Part 1)  

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Everybody knows that creating a distinct brand for your coffee shop is a hard thing to do especially with having lots of competitors in every block you see. But I am not saying that it is impossible to do, you just have to have the right combination of hard work, unique theme/design and of course great coffee (Don't forget this!). Once you have these, you can say that you have distinguished through differentiation and extinguished the competition. Kidding aside, it was just a nice thing to say to give you some fighting spirit, but here is a great answer by Kim T. Gordon of Entrepreneur.com

You can create a distinct brand for your coffee shop through a combination of unique (or themed) decor, menu design and wait staff attire. Choose a look or theme that will give customers a distinctly different, fun or interesting dining experience.

You can also develop a customer reward program that lets frequent diners earn reward points. And most of all, by learning the names of your frequent customers, you'll make them feel welcome, and they will be more likely to spread the good word about your restaurant.

What do you think of her suggestions? As for mine, I'll be posting mine in my next entry. Have a Great Weekend everyone! Tickle Away to a Great Day!

Thursday, July 24

Can the Clover Coffee Machine Save Starbucks?  

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This $11,000 Clover Coffee Machine will be installed in 80 Starbucks by the end of 2008 hoping that it can help the coffee company earn back the respect is has lost due to criticisms with its coffee.

According to Wired Magazine:

The Clover is the first coffeemaker that lets the user program three key variables: dose, water temperature, and brew time. (Example: 37.5 grams of Brazilian Fazenda São João at 204 degrees for 43 seconds.) After the coffee steeps, a piston mechanism extracts the liquid from spent beans, resulting in a fresh cuppa in less than a minute. A filter platform pops a hockey puck of grounds out of the top, where it's easily wiped away. An Ethernet port connected to an online database is designed to let users save favorite recipes for specific beans. Made of stainless steel and copper, a single Clover typically takes several hours to assemble by hand.

With that description, it is no wonder why Howard Schultz, founder and CEO of Starbucks, was wowed by this machine. But will will it be able to help the company in its bottom line and win coffee lovers back? We still don't know..we will find out by the end of the year.

Source: www.wired.com

Wednesday, July 23

JavaFit's New RTD Drink to Start and End Your Day  

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Are you looking for the perfect drink that can give you overall wellness, energy, health benefits and the right amount of caffeine? And yes, the great thing about is that it does not have any sugar. Introducing JavaFit's New Delicious Functional Lattes.

Marketwatch.com reports that "JavaFit is at it again! The company that brought you great tasting gourmet brewed coffee that promotes wellness is launching a full line of functional, ready-to-drink (RTD) coffee beverages that will provide the same healthy benefits. The great tasting JavaFit Lattes, will hit the U.S. market in the fourth quarter, 2008." [Read the Full Article]

It comes in four functional flavors:


JavaFit’s Diet Plus Latte is a deliciously smooth, lower calorie, lower fat, high powered blend to get you through your workout, suppress your appetite and support your weight loss program. Drink it cold straight out of the box or pour into a blender with fruit and a heaping scoop of protein powder for a tasty meal replacement. Only 100 calories, zero trans fat and no sugar added.

Main active ingredients:

* Chromium Polynicotinate
* Advantra Z
* Garcinia Cambogia
* Extra Caffeine


Need to WAKE UP! JavaFit’s creamy rich Extreme Latte will wake you up, get you out and keep you going at work, at play and everything in between. Our deliciously smooth blend is conveniently packed for your active lifestyle. Just shake well and drink it cold straight out of the box. No sugar added and zero trans fat.

Main active ingredients:

* Green Tea Extract
* Niacin
* Garcinia Cambogia
* Extra Caffeine


If more focus and alertness is what you need to manage your lifestyle than JavaFit’s Focus Latte, enriched with vitamins and minerals for increased mental activity and clarity, could help get you there. The smooth and decadent latte has as much caffeine as a regular cup of coffee and is delicious cold or warm in your favorite mug. No sugar added and zero trans fat.

Main active ingredients:

* Alpha-GPC
* Vitamin A
* Vitamin C
* Vitamin E
* Thiamin (B1)
* Riboflavin (B2)
* Vitamin B6
* Vitamin B12
* Niacin
* Calcium
* Zinc
* Caffeine



Protect yourself with JavaFit’s Immune Latte. The refreshingly smooth rich taste packed with vitamins and minerals and Enchinacea to help you build and stimulate your immune system. With as much caffeine as a cup of regular coffee, drink Immune Latte cold or warm it up in your favorite mug. No sugar added and zero trans fat.

Main active ingredients:

* Enchinacea Angustifolia Root
* Vitamin A
* Vitamin E
* Vitamin C
* Thiamin (B1)
* Riboflavin (B2)
* Vitamin B6
* Vitamin B12
* Niacin
* Calcium
* Potassium
* Caffeine

To learn more about their product, visit www.javafit.com

Tuesday, July 22

Coffee Mug Tuesday (4th Mug): Show off Your Coffee Mugs  

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Hulk Coffee Mug Image

This mug would have been great if I had seen this last month in time for the showing of the Hulk. But for now, let's not think or talk about the movie (even if it was nice!), let's talk about the Color Changing Hulk Mug.

This is just a fun mug to have and I want one! According to Hulcollection.wordpress.com:

When you pour a hot liquid into the mug a backround appears with scenes from comic stories.

So for all Hulk Fans and Coffee Lovers out there, this is THE mug for you. It will be nice to have it in your office or anywhere where people can see you using it. Enjoy the moment of being popular while Hulk is beside you.

Sunday, July 20

My Coffee Ice Cream Wish (I had it this weekend) List  

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During the past weekend I started craving for ice cream but I wanted either a chocolate or coffee flavored one but all I could find was the chocolate. It was all good since you can never go wrong with chocolate. You see, I really think chocolate and coffee are like brothers since..Wait! Don't get me started there. Anyway, since I couldn't find any coffee ice cream/gelato the other day I decided to make you all want coffee ice cream RIGHT NOW so I compiled some coffee ice cream links that has ice cream shops, recipes and anything related to coffee ice cream. So here it is "My Coffee Ice Cream Wish (I had it this weekend) List"...

The retailers:

1. Indulge in the quality of Starbucks in rich ice cream.
2. "...so rich it's hard to believe it has only half the fat of classic Häagen-Dazs ice cream."
3. Swensen's for some Turkish Coffee Ice Cream
4. Some of that Cold Stone Creamery..
5. Citysearch's Best Ice Cream (SF) Editorial Winner, Bi-Rite Creamery & Bakeshop.
6. Coffee Health Bar Crunch, Ben & Jerry's Top 10 Best Seller.
7. BR's Jamoca is a classic.
8. "Award Winning Ice Cream" by Bombay Ice Creamery.
9. Lizzy's Homemade Ice Cream
10. Keeping the kids off the street with Taharka Ice Cream.
11. Brazilian Coffee by McConnell's.
12. Want some of that Kemp's Caribou Coffee.
13. Pazzo Gelato got "Voted LA's best by LA Weekly"
14. Let's go to Rome for some coffee and coffee ice cream.
15. Not all coffee ice cream, but the 10 best ice cream parlor in New York.
16.Delicieuse, a taste of French Ice Cream in LA.
17. Have a Coffee Break with Blue Bunny.
18.For my favorite (so far), the Seattle's Best Classic Javanilla Shake. Here in the Philippines, they use Arce Dairy Coffee Ice Cream.

Food Blogs and Coffee Ice Cream Recipes

1. Vietnamese Coffee Ice Cream and Chocolate Cardamom Tartlets by Tartelette.
2. Another great looking Vietnamese Coffee Ice Cream by cafefernando
3. You'd love to know this Coffee Ice Cream Recipe.
4. If you're not eating out in NY, you better try this at home.
5. Try this Coffee Gelato Recipe
6. The Perfect Scoop Ice Cream by Elise.com
7. Cuban Coffee Ice Cream with Dulce de Leche just sounds really good!
8. Whisk's Coffee Ice Cream and some KroomKaKe!
9. A Vegan Ice Cream Paradise.
10. A "Novice-Baker's" guide to Coffee Ice Cream.

I am sure by now you're already craving for some coffee ice cream RIGHT NOW right? Go treat yourself to one or make your own. Hope you enjoy it:)

I know there are still a lot of links out there that I haven't seen so if you know of any, please send the links to me and I'll post that links together with yours...Thanks!

Image Source: www.noteatingoutinny.com

Friday, July 18

Heat Me and My Coffee  

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Heat Me Coffee Warmer Image

There are people who work too hard or look like they're working too hard just to impress their boss. These people sometimes forget that their coffee can get cold. There are also some people who just take time drinking their coffee while working and the next thing they know - their coffee is ice cold. There are also people who just wait for their mugs to tell them that their coffee is already cold. And you know when coffee gets cold...it's just disgusting.

There is a good news and a bad news for the kinds of people mentioned. The good news is that some designers have thought of a way to help you stay in your seat, glued to your pcs/laptops and still enjoy your coffee by heating it through their USB. Introducing the Heat Me, which heats your coffee by dipping the product in your coffee and wait for it to heat it. With its shape, it may not only be used to Heat but also to Hit (sorry about this). Kidding aside, it may also be used to stir additional sugar or creamer.

The Bad News? Well, as I said, it was only done by designers (a concept design). This hasn't been out in the market yet. But I am sure that somehow, some people will try to make this and it might be a hit to coffee lovers or it might not. Let's just see...

What do you think of Heat Me?

For me, I think the concept and the whole idea is great. It really answers to a need of busy people who don't have time to make fresh coffee or at least reheat their coffee. I'm just having trouble with the whole design and having the metal dipped in my coffee. Is it just me or I just don't like the taste of metal. Not that I have actually tasted one but I know you get what I mean. Another thing, they better make sure that that metal is stainless steel. Well, that's what I think..

How about you?

Source: SlashGear

Thursday, July 17

Starbucks' Products that Failed  

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Here are some of the products that Starbucks have failed and some may be reasons why Starbucks lost its magic.


Starbucks's breakfast sandwiches
According to Schultz, "The scent of the warm sandwiches interferes with the coffee aroma in our stores." He needed to do this in order for Starbucks to concentrate on their main product, and that is coffee.


Blackberry Green Tea Frappuccino
I'm a big fan of green tea also, but this combination doesn't work for me. One big reason why you won't see this in Starbucks stores anymore.



Organic Milk
With organic milk being one of the fastest growing segment of organic agriculture in the U.S., Starbucks thought their sales would grow from year to year but it just didn't. According to Paula Emerick, a senior dairy buyer of Starbucks, "It was always an oddity to me."



Orange Mocha Frappuccino
They had something similar in the Philippines back in the 2001 if I'm not mistaken but that one had the chocolate java chips in it. I actually liked it but like this Orange Mocha Frappuccino, it was a "flop-uccino" to the public.



Seasonal Products
This is definitely not Starbucks' main line. Yes, it's nice to collect some of these items but they're just too many. Observe how Starbucks will limit the production of these products..it will really be seasonal.



Sandwiches and Salads
Some of the salads just wasn't that great and it had to go so Starbucks did just that.



Store Closures
And yes..closing of the 600 Starbucks stores across the U.S. But are they closing the correct stores?

Pictures by Sarah Gilbert of www.BloggingStocks.com

Coffee Video Thursday #4: Scrubs (Coffee Addiction)  

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I know I have been putting up coffee video ads the past 3 "Coffee Video Thursday" and I decided to show you something different for this week. Here's a clip from Scrubs, which I thought was really funny. I know a lot of Scrubs fans out there may have seen this and thought that this was really funny too, but for all those who haven't...enjoy this video!

"Dude! I'd be a mess if I had to give up my joe!" How about all of you coffee lovers?

Tuesday, July 15

Blueberry Sour Cream Coffee Cake Recipe  

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It's been awhile since I last posted a recipe that includes coffee so when I was searching for a great recipe I stumbled upon this Blueberry Sour Cream Coffee Cake Recipe by Susan Walschlager of Anderson, Indiana. Who wouldn't notice it, with a name like that (having all the ingredients in the name is a mouthful) it would be really hard to miss. When I saw the picture, it was really enticing and I would agree with what she said:

Holiday breakfasts would not be the same at our house without this delicious coffee cake. Whenever I take it anywhere, everyone raves about it and wants the recipe.

This looks really good as it was originally featured in www.tasteofhome.com and Reader's Digest. Before I give out the recipe, here are some nutritional facts you need to know.

* One serving: (1 piece)
* Calories: 448
* Fat: 17 g
* Saturated Fat: 10 g
* Cholesterol: 114 mg
* Sodium: 328 mg
* Carbohydrate: 68 g
* Fiber: 1 g
* Protein: 6 g

The Recipe
Preparation time: 25 minutes
Cooking time: 55 minutes

You Will Need
3/4 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream

Filling
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries (Do not thaw when frozen)

Glaze
1 cup confectioners' sugar
2 to 3 tablespoons milk


What to Do
1. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with sour cream.

2. Spoon a third of the batter into a greased and floured 10-inch tube pan. Combine brown sugar, flour and cinnamon; sprinkle half over batter. Top with half of the berries. Repeat layers. Top with remaining batter.

3. Bake at 350°F for 55-65 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool completely. Combine glaze ingredients; drizzle over cake.

Hope you enjoy the cake! Let me know what you think..:)

Coffee Mug Tuesday 3: Show off Your Coffee Mugs  

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How would you like to wake up with these every morning? Not bad huh?

This "Undress Me Mug" is by J-Me Designs and it is just one of most innovative mug designs I have ever seen. It is just a great way to start your day. The mug has a picture of either a naked man/woman inside the mug and the more you drink your coffee, the more flesh is revealed.

I couldn't wait all week to post these mugs since it just makes a perfect gift to your friends or your co-workers. But I think the latter would be a better recipient of this mug. Imagine them getting a surprise at the office the first time they get it. Of course don't forget the coffee as to not spoil the surprise. You may also give this to your boss and I'm sure your boss would want to finish it at once and if he/she likes the nudity, expect a raise in the next bonus.

Coffee and Nudity..a nice combination to start your day right.

Product dimensions: 95mm (h) x 82mm (diameter)
Product weight (packaged): 400g
Price: (approx $16.00 USD)(standard UK delivery £2.95)

Sunday, July 13

Bogus Blue Mountain Coffee  

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The Blue Mountain Coffee that you might have drunk this morning might not be the "real" thing. It is being reported in www.radiojamaica.com that the Blue Mountain Coffee, which is known for its high quality, is being pirated.

According to the article.

Director General of the Coffee Industry Board (CIB) Christopher Gentles claims Blue Mountain Coffee, which has been grown in the Blue Mountains for over 100 years, is being ripped off by unqualified producers.

According to Mr. Gentiles, the registered Blue Mountain brand name is being used illegally by several overseas and local coffee producers to capitalize on the world export market for high grade coffee.

Ed's Notes: With 400 billion cups of coffee consumed every year and with the high quality that Blue Mountain coffee produces, these pirates would really want to copy the BM Coffee. There is just a huge market for coffee with some people drinking cups good for two people. It is just tempting for the pirates to copy.

The Coffee Industry Board should find out all those who are not licensed to sell Blue Mountain Coffee and really take them to court if they persist in selling. It should be stopped right now before more people get the idea (you know how pirates are) and start "copying" what their other pirates are doing. Before you know it, there would be more illegal Blue Mountain Coffee being sold worldwide than the real BM Coffee.

Saturday, July 12

A Coffee Table for Coffee and Nintendo Fans  

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NES Coffee Table Image

I have always wanted to see creativity when it comes to anything related to coffee but I wasn't expecting this type of creativity. This is a coffee table/NES controller made by Kyle Downes.

His creation has created a lot of great reviews from the tech world (sites/blogs). As for me, I am not that much into tech but this is just great...awesome(like the name of his blog). This just brings the past back (the up, up, down, down, left, right days), you guys remember that right?

What's great about this is that it serves different purposes. First, it can be a coffee table since it has a glass on top, then it is an NES controller, and it can also be a storage for your games, books, etc. I wish I had that kind of coffee table and everything will be all good. I can drink coffee and when I'm done I'd be playing Super Mario then drink coffee again.

If you don't believe me it is fully functional, watch this video.



Wouldn't you want to have one also?

Friday, July 11

Row-thru coffee bar in B.C. attracts mariners  

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VICTORIA - The opening of a drive-thru restaurant usually isn't a big deal - unless it happens in a community without cars.

Out in Kyuquot, a village of 275 on the northwest coast of Vancouver Island where everyone gets about by boat, folks have been lining up ever since Java the Hutt opened last week. It's a nautical drive-thru cappuccino bar built on a floating dock.

The one-barista bar is the only local coffee shop for thirsty mariners looking for a cuppa joe. [Read the Full Story]

I just think this is a really cool idea of serving coffee to the people in Kyuquot. The people who opened this do have a lot of business sense. They saw a new way of serving coffee in their village and they made it happen with the Row-thru coffee bar. Another cool idea is the name they used for this which is Java the Hutt since their place looks like a small hut.

This is just a great and I wish them all the best in their business. Great idea and maybe they can open one more branch if the size of the area permits. We wouldn't want them to look like Starbucks, where they have a store in every corner. Hmm..maybe for them, they can be excused. So go ahead and open a branch in every "turn" but just be careful not to dump your cups in the water.

What your Starbucks drink say about you  

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Even with all the problems Starbucks have faced recently, there are still a lot of loyal Starbucks fans out there. You may be one of them and just out of curiosity you might want to find out what your Starbucks drink says about you. Thanks to sheknows.com we can now find out. Read on...

Venti bold coffee, no room

Typically bold, no room coffees or “red eyes” (coffee with an added shot) are ordered in the morning just as the sky changes from dark to sunlit. Expect this customer to be a corporate male on his way to the office who occasionally brings in his own travel mug to be eco-responsible. He may just order a blueberry scone… if it’s Friday.




Iced grande, sugar-free vanilla, non-fat latte
This is the favored drink of suburban moms. The vanilla sweetener is a low-cal, sugar satisfier and non-fat milk is the only option after an early morning spin class. No guilt for this mom as she heads to playgroup.

Chocolate milk
Whether made with mocha sauce and cold milk or purchased in a small box from the cooler, chocolate milk, or hot chocolate at a kid’s temperature with whip and chocolate sauce, is a staple for the young ones. Clearly this is the underage beverage for the children who accompany their parents during their daily coffee fix. It’s a bribe and a promise. [Read the full article]

Do you agree with what your Starbucks drink say about you?

Thursday, July 10

Coffee Video Thursday #3 : 1970's Folgers Commercial  

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This is another one of those "classic" commercials with just a simple plot but it gets the message across. This starts with the guy fixing the old lady's car and is invited to have coffee inside the house. With the husband being "embarrassed" with the coffee that his wife makes, he tries to tell his wife that the lady just has to go. The wife then tells the old lady that her husband is not happy with the coffee she makes so the old lady shares the Folgers Coffee. And you know what happens next..the guy is happy with his coffee and of course, it's a happy ending.

I just love how the commercials before are so "cheesy" but as I said earlier it gets the message across. An observation I have is that the commercials before would show how guys are dominant before and this thing won't be happening now. A lot would agree with this but the husband learned a lesson on coffee from the old lady - and he learned a lot. What do you think of this advertisement?

Wednesday, July 9

Four Memory Boosting Foods  

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What's a great way to help fight memory loss and even improve our memory? One is sleeping right but according to research another would be eating right. According to Joy Bauer MS, a TODAY nutritionist,

"Every cell in your body needs a steady supply of oxygen and nutrients in order to stay alive and work properly, including brain cells. Because oxygen and nutrients are carried in the blood stream, anything that impedes blood flow will starve those all-important brain cells."

SO..what are those foods that can help boost our memory? Let's start with our favorite drink:

Coffee

Good news for coffee lovers. About two years ago, researchers from the University Innsbruck in Austria found caffeinated coffee can temporarily sharpen your focus and memory. After giving volunteers the caffeine equivalent of about two cups of coffee, they observed that their brain activity was increased in two locations—one being the part responsible for memory. Results were observed using MRI technology. Without caffeine, there was no increase in brain activity.

Then, earlier this year, another study published in a leading Neurology journal, found the effects of coffee may be longer lasting — specifically in women. This four-year long study involving about 7000 participants... all participants went through thorough baseline evaluations – cognitive function was tested, along with high blood pressure, high cholesterol and other vascular issues. Participants were re-evaluated at the two-year mark, and again at the four year mark.

At the end of the four year period, researchers found that women age 65 and older who drank more than three cups of coffee per day (or the caffeine equivalent in tea) had 33 percent less decline in memory over time than women who drank one cup or less of coffee or tea per day. The results held up even after researchers adjusted for other factors that could affect memory abilities, such as age, education, baseline cognitive function, depression, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, medications, and other chronic illnesses. This caffeine-memory association was not observed in men — the authors hypothesize that perhaps that’s because men and women metabolize caffeine differently.

So if memory problems are a major concern for you, and if you don’t have a medical condition that precludes caffeine, feel free to indulge in a cup or two in the morning to jump-start your brain.

Note: If you have elevated low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, you should limit your caffeine fix to plain brewed coffee or tea. There is some evidence that unfiltered coffee (the kind used to make espresso, cappuccino, and latte) may raise cholesterol levels, especially in people who are already battling high cholesterol. To be safe, skip the fancy brews and stick with a regular cup of joe. Of course, be cautious and moderate with added sugar! [Read the full Article]

Tuesday, July 8

Are you a Coffee Addict?  

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That is the question...Are you a coffee addict?

If yes, this is really an informative video on coffee for you to watch and of course also for non-coffee addicts too. It answers a lot of questions if you're drinking too much and if drinking coffee is safe even if you're pregnant. It evens shows a segment on what is the effect of caffeine to your system once you drink your cup of joe.

Speaking of drinking too much, I also can't believe how that guy in the video drinks 7-8 shots of espresso daily. My heart would be pumping at an alarming rate if I drank that much. I'd be awake all night and for a guy that panics fast, I'm not sure how I'll be able to handle the anxiety attacks. How about you? Are you also that kind of a coffee addict?

*Apologies if the size of the video for some may be too big, something's wrong with the MSNBC video.

Monday, July 7

Coffee Mug Tuesday: Show off Your Coffee Mugs (2nd Mug)  

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Welcome to Coffee Mug Tuesday as I will be showing to you some of the mugs that have been submitted and searched online. This is part of my search for the perfect mug(and maybe this can also influence you to collecting/getting your own). So here are two mugs that I'd like you to take a look at and tell me which one is better.

Mug Shot 1:

Logo is a 3-D raised carving.
www.DeneenPottery.com

Coffee Mug Image

Mug Shot 2:

Miam Miam by Patricia Ryan (Retroflo).
www.unitedbrands.us



Thanks again to everyone who sent their mugs especially to caffe biscotto and CCafe

Which do you think is better?

Starbucks co-founder talks about early days and why he doesn't talk about Howard Schultz  

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Gordon Bowker Image by Dean Rutz

A lot of things have happened to Starbucks lately, more negative than positive. So I decided to feature a lot on Starbucks for the next two weeks to show more about their history, news, products and more. To start off, I found an interview of Gordon Bowker done by Melissa Allison of the Seattle Times last March 10, 2008. After co-founding of Starbucks, he co-launched Redhook Ale Brewery then bought Peet's Coffee & Tea. Find out if what he has to say about Howard Schultz if it is positive or will it still be a negative. Here is part of the interview:

Q: How did you come up with the name "Starbucks"?

A: It's sort of like writing the Council of Nicaea, choosing which Gospels to include in the New Testament. Some are apocryphal and some are factual.

My recollection is this: We were thinking of all kinds of names and came desperately close to calling it Cargo House, which would have been a terrible, terrible mistake. Terry Heckler [with whom Bowker owned an advertising agency] mentioned in an offhand way that he thought words that begin with "st" were powerful words. I thought about that and I said, yeah, that's right, so I did a list of "st" words.

Somebody somehow came up with an old mining map of the Cascades and Mount Rainier, and there was an old mining town called Starbo. As soon as I saw Starbo, I, of course, jumped to Melville's first mate [named Starbuck] in Moby-Dick. But Moby-Dick didn't have anything to do with Starbucks directly; it was only coincidental that the sound seemed to make sense. A lot of times you'll see references to the coffee-loving first mate of the Pequod. And then somebody said to me, well no, it wasn't that he loved coffee in the book, it was that he loved coffee in the movie. I don't think even Scarecrow Video has a copy of that movie. Moby-Dick has nothing to do with coffee as far as I know. [Read the full Interview]

Thanks to DEAN RUTZ/THE SEATTLE TIMES for the picture and Melissa Allison for the Interview

What happens when coffee and art are combined.. (Part 2)  

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I already did an entry about Andrew Saur and Angel Sarkela-Saur, two artists who have used coffee as their medium in painting. Check out this video, which was taken in 2002, to know more about their art and maybe inspire you to create paintings like that or maybe find a new way to use coffee in art.

Sunday, July 6

Swarovski Studded Coffee Maker  

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While walking around the Mall (Greenbelt here in Manila) the other day, I dropped by the Apple Store to check some of their latest products since I wanted a new iPod. Then I saw this area full of Swarovski (of course it's hard to miss a Swarovski) so I took a look at it. There was a Swarovski earphones, USB drive that looked like a lock and a pendant.

I asked the sales associate how much the Phillips Swarovski earphones were and he said it was around P8000 ($178). I then asked if a lot of people really buy these things and he said there are a lot, which was quite surprising. What was even more surprising was that someone actually purchased the whole set two days before.



So I got really curious and searched if there were any Swarovski inspired coffee makers and yes there is actually one. This Swarovski bedazzled Coffee Maker is for people who need to add some more bling bling to their kitchen which may brighten up your kitchen (just a little bit). As for making coffee, of course it can make a cup of coffee but I think this is not the main purpose why people would want to buy this. I think it would be more for the crystal than the functions.

This Nespresso Crystal Edition coffee machine is covered with 3100 Swarovski crystals and costs you around $4,000. Not bad for a "coffee maker" with studs like that huh? What do you think?

Some Studded Information:
width: 22.6 cm deepth: 23 cm height: 23 cm
Weight: 4,50 kg Power: 1260 Watts

- metal working
- cup warmer in aluminium
- removable grill for the preperation of Latte Macchiato
- automatically remove of used capsules
- illuminated collecting pan for used capsules
- high pressure pump with 19 bar
- electronic temperature control (Thermoblock)
- removeable watertank
- easy preperation with ergonomically handhold
- automatic functions. Choose with one push at a button between Espresso and Lungo.

Saturday, July 5

June's 1st Place Winner at Smartworks  

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Coffee Mugs Stamps Card
Coffee Mug Rack by Sarah Kornhaus

I just stumbled upon this website today and decided to put instead of the one which was supposed to be posted today (I'll be posting it tomorrow). Take a look at the card which was made by Sarah in the smART Card Stamping Contest

It's a card which can be described in a single word: CLEVER.

To start with, Sarah used real wallpaper to design the cupboard/counter background for her card. She also combined parts of a scroll punch with brads to make the hooks, created glazed mugs (they look ceramic) via embossing, AND made freehand coffee beans by cutting bean shapes from dark brown cardstock, scoring, and clear embossing. [Read More]

Thursday, July 3

Too Much Coffee on Your Mouse  

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I was doing some research the other day (Yes! I do the research for you guys so you can just sit back, relax and read) and saw this Ristretto coffee mouse from early 2007. I didn't know how to react when I first saw it but it sure wasn't a positive one. Talk about an ugly mouse - the beans just don't go well with it.

I give the design 2 thumbs down but I guess a positive here is that you wouldn't have to worry about staying awake while working on a paper or a project late at night since the coffee aroma from the beans will help you with that. Well, unless your hands sweat too much and somehow changes the smell of the coffee beans. Hmm...I think that was just wrong! Anyway, tell me what you think about this coffee mouse. Coffee Tickled or Coffee Ticked?

Coffee Video Thursday #2 : Wilkins Coffee (Jim Henson Ads)  

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The really old advertisement is something that's both hilarious and scary. I was never a big fan of the muppets but the "acting" and script here were really funny and somehow I'm just amazed how great a talent Jim Henson was.

Watch the first part when the first muppet says "How do you feel about Wilkins Coffee?" then the second muppet responds by saying "Never heard of it!" So the first muppet blows the second one away with a cannon ball. It ends by "Kermit" looking at the audience and saying "Now, how do you feel about Wilkins Coffee?"

Funny but scary huh? He was imposing a threat to the audience which I don't think will be allowed these days but it was still filled with fun. This is something that would grab your attention when you watch it. This was truly a great marketing campaign back in the 60s.

How about you what do you think of this ad?

Wednesday, July 2

Drinking Coffee After Workout Can Refuel Muscle  

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Muscle Biopsy Image for Coffee Research

Muscle biopsy. (Credit: John Hawley, RMIT University)

Here's another reason to drink coffee especially for those who are active and workout a lot. Add Coffee to your post workout diet and eat carbs! Isn't that weird? I must admit that even as a coffee lover, I'd rather go for something cold like a Gatorade after workout to refuel my body and something like coffee rarely crosses my mind to do that. My heartbeat would still be fast after a workout and I wouldn't want to make it work faster by drinking more caffeine. But this research is convincing and I just might have changed my mind about drinking coffee after a workout. This is taken from the Science Daily:

Glycogen, the muscle's primary fuel source during exercise, is replenished more rapidly when athletes ingest both carbohydrate and caffeine following exhaustive exercise, new research shows. Athletes who ingested caffeine with carbohydrate had 66% more glycogen in their muscles four hours after finishing intense, glycogen-depleting exercise, compared to when they consumed carbohydrate alone, according to the study

"If you have 66% more fuel for the next day's training or competition, there is absolutely no question you will go farther or faster," said Dr. Hawley, the study's senior author. Caffeine is present in common foods and beverages, including coffee, tea, chocolate and cola drinks.

I am now convinced that coffee and yes, chocolate can be part of our diet after a tiring workout. Being a chubby guy, I can't outrun some of the guys who I play basketball with and this research is something I can look forward to in helping me increase my speed (Hopefully even if I've accepted that I was born slow). I will update you the whenever this becomes part of my "workout" all right? Let's see if it works even if it is just works psychologically. Tell me also if this research works for you too. Have a great day everyone!

Tuesday, July 1

Starbucks to close 600 stores in the US  

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According to MSNBC, "Starbucks Corp.has drastically increased the number of stores it plans to close and could eliminate as many as 12,000 full- and part-time positions as a result." Out of the 7,087 Starbucks stores, 600 will be closing, which is around 8.5%. This was up from the previous plan to close 100 stores.

Starbucks also said it will open fewer than 200 stores in its coming fiscal year, which begins Sept. 29. That’s down from a previous target of opening 250 stores during that period.

Starbucks, known for sometimes going so far as to open stores across the street from one another, has recently acknowledged that it may have lost some of its luster during a long period of rapid store openings and expansion into everything from breakfast sandwiches to movie promotions.

Earlier this year, Starbucks Chairman Howard Schultz returned to the chief executive position, and the company vowed to make major changes. That has included plans to bring in new products, the introduction of a new, smoother coffee blend that is now served at most stores and a decision to stop offering breakfast sandwiches.

Starbucks will take an after tax write-down of between $328 million and $348 million related to the store closings. But because of tax benefits, it expects to see total cash outflow of about $100 million. Starbucks stock is up 6.5% in after hours trading.

I guess Starbucks is not that immune to the weak U.S. economy and the effect of high gas prices. With that in mind, coffee lovers would rather just go to other local coffee shops that serve cheaper coffee but might even taste better. Starbucks, after all, has been struggling to please some customers with its "burnt" coffee lately.

Goodluck to Starbucks and hopefully the baristas who were affected by the closing get transferred to another Starbucks store or get hired by another coffee shop who can use their experience. Oh yeah, my cousin Mario is working in a Starbucks in the Pacifica, San Francisco area. Hey Mario! Is your store affected??

Coffee Mug Tuesday: Show off Your Coffee Mugs  

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We all know how important mugs are in drinking our favorite drink (Coffee right?). Whether you're a coffee drinker, a tea drinker or what the ceramic mugs just seem to help our drinks taste better. I don't know what the ceramic mugs do but drinking from them not only makes the drink better but it also helps the environment.

With that, I'd like to welcome you all to this new portion of my blog which is called "Coffee Mug Tuesday." Every Tuesday we will be featuring mugs from around the world/internet and mugs from anyone who'd like to showcase their mugs. There are a lot of great mugs out there and I'd like to see them so send the pictures of your mugs now. Show them off everyone!

Let me start by showing you my mug by AmericaWare (Feltman Langer). For some reason I just can't find a link or a picture on the internet for this mug. It was a gift to me a couple years ago by my dad and I'm guessing it was bought in eBay.

This mug reminds me of a combination of Darth Vader and that contraption that falls off the spaceship. Even if this mug looks like it came from space with the way it is designed I still love the it and most the important thing is that it serves its purpose. It has a very solid/no-slide base that has a texture grip. It also features a lockable, twist-in, drink thru lid.




So I invite everyone to email the pics and description of their mugs and hopefully we can feature your mugs here for "Coffee Mug Tuesday" or you may send me links to other coffee mug sites. Thanks a lot! Tickle Away to a Great Day!