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good brew in the atlanta-charlotte-charleston triangle
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e61brewski
Senior Member
e61brewski
Joined: 7 Dec 2004
Posts: 131
Location: greenville, sc
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: isomac tea, riviera lever
Grinder: mazzer major, isomac gran...
Vac Pot: dirt devil lx
Drip: wouldn't dare
Roaster: i-roast
Posted Sun Jan 23, 2005, 12:56pm
Subject: good brew in the atlanta-charlotte-charleston triangle
 

folks:

i'd be interested in good brews in the south carolina/north carolina/georgia nexus, including but not limited to greenville (s.c.), charleston, columbia, asheville, athens, etc.

i'm in greenville, and i KNOW for a fact there are other greenville geekers who hang out here, so vote for your best. clearly, in this town, the underground has been a leader, both in correct shot-pulling and overall coolness. port city java just joined us here, but aside from being extremely expensive i haven't seen them pull the kinds of shots i was expecting. then there's liquid highway (organic, fair-trade beans but not the best blending, imo), carolina coffee roasters (with whom my experience is thin, probably for lack of overall ambience pulling me in that direction) and spill the beans (which, somehow, stunningly got voted best in the upstate though i can't fathom how).

none of those offer the kind of brew we should have in this town, it seems to me.

my fave in this general geographic area is a small joint in asheville that made usa today's list of the best  small coffeehouses in the u.s. -- gold hill espresso. their house espresso blend is just other-worldly, and very smoky and mysterious (in a good way -- not a burnt-the-bejabbers-out-of-them-beans way).

i've noticed some of the recommended joints in atlanta and charlotte in this forum. but what about charleston or columbia or other towns i'm not thinking of? where would you go for brew if you could do a quick day-trip and didn't wanna approach a big metropolis? surely there are some gems around here i don't know about.

right?

 
the blog: http://ben.szobody.com
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coffeegoddess
Senior Member
coffeegoddess
Joined: 23 Mar 2004
Posts: 29
Location: south carolina
Expertise: Pro Barista

Espresso: la marzocco
Grinder: mazzer luigi
Drip: bunn
Roaster: ambex
Posted Thu Feb 3, 2005, 6:22pm
Subject: Re: good brew in the atlanta-charlotte-charleston triangle
 

how could you not LOVE carolina coffee roasters???

they ROAST there.  and the drinks are awesome.  and the staff is incredible.  and they are open late.









and, oh yeah, i work there.
come on by.  i'll take care of ya.
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e61brewski
Senior Member
e61brewski
Joined: 7 Dec 2004
Posts: 131
Location: greenville, sc
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: isomac tea, riviera lever
Grinder: mazzer major, isomac gran...
Vac Pot: dirt devil lx
Drip: wouldn't dare
Roaster: i-roast
Posted Mon Feb 7, 2005, 12:05am
Subject: Re: good brew in the atlanta-charlotte-charleston triangle
 

coffeegoddess:

i admit my insider knowledge of carolina coffee roasters is limited. tell me this: are your green beans of a higher quality than the other two roasters in town?

that's been my question several times, and i haven't gotten a straight answer.

then again, if you're hanging out here ... that's worth a few points. ;-)

when do you work? and what's an insider's tip for buying fresh-roasted beans? i wouldn't mind giving some of your best a whirl next to some others i'm a big fan of....

in my humble opinion, you guys just need a better location.
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coffeegoddess
Senior Member
coffeegoddess
Joined: 23 Mar 2004
Posts: 29
Location: south carolina
Expertise: Pro Barista

Espresso: la marzocco
Grinder: mazzer luigi
Drip: bunn
Roaster: ambex
Posted Fri Feb 11, 2005, 6:25pm
Subject: Re: good brew in the atlanta-charlotte-charleston triangle
 

i am not sure as to our quality of beans versus the "other guys"  and i really can only assume you mean west end and ???.  i know that we and west end use the same nicaraguan.  but other than that, i know we get awesome beans from several places.  mainly coffee holding in NY.  

and i am very able to help you in buying the freshest beans.  we roast almost every day and we can usually tell you what was roasted the most recently.

i think our location is FANTASTIC!  we are close to 85, riverside and eastside high schools, BMW, Michelin, and the thornblade area.  all of which creates excellent business for us.  granted we are not close to downtown or even central greenville, but i think we are well worth the drive.  especially on the off-chance you catch us roasting.

come by and see us.  tell them the coffeegoddess sent you.  

~cg
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NavyBean
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Joined: 13 Feb 2005
Posts: 16
Location: Seminole, Fl
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Electra Leva
Grinder: Nuova Simonelli MCF
Vac Pot: Bialetti 6 cup
Posted Sun Feb 13, 2005, 4:27pm
Subject: Re: good brew in the atlanta-charlotte-charleston triangle
 

Carolina Coffee Roasters and Coffee Underground are both outstanding roaster/retailers.  The espresso at CCR rocks! and Coffee Underground is probably one of the coolest coffeehouses east of the Mississippi. In the Atlanta area it has got to be Java Vino, what with the direct grower connection and all.
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e61brewski
Senior Member
e61brewski
Joined: 7 Dec 2004
Posts: 131
Location: greenville, sc
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: isomac tea, riviera lever
Grinder: mazzer major, isomac gran...
Vac Pot: dirt devil lx
Drip: wouldn't dare
Roaster: i-roast
Posted Sun Feb 13, 2005, 10:42pm
Subject: Re: good brew in the atlanta-charlotte-charleston triangle
 

this thread was meant to turn over new leaves -- not debate old ones.

having said that, i'll briefly agree that the ambience/attention to detail/barista training at the underground is top notch. it's a great place to hang out. but that's not what i was taking issue with in my original post.

i would also agree that ccr has the roasting expertise to merit some respect ... and i plan to continue to try various drinks from various baristi. the ccr location may be good for daytime traffic and business coffee drinkers, i was simply mentioning that the shopping center location wasn't the best for evening hang-out ambience. no criticism of their coffee, though.

what i'm really looking for, as i said in the beginning, is good places i don't know about. anywhere south of charlotte, east of atlanta or west of the coast. the only truly top-notch joint i know is gold hill in asheville. i'm still listening, hoping for more suggestions. and while i'm not picking nits about greenville's offerings, having been to the west coast i think there is better to be had (who's a true coffee lover who doesn't always strive for something better, eh?)

i'm willing to drive and discover. but where? is there anything better in the region?

also, assuming our greenville baristi can truly hold their own, i wish more would have entered the recent sotuheast regionals. would've enjoyed seeing how they stack up and having a hometown cadre to root for (this is no disrespect to moe, of course, who placed third from liquid highway -- kudos to him).

 
the blog: http://ben.szobody.com
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e61brewski
Senior Member
e61brewski
Joined: 7 Dec 2004
Posts: 131
Location: greenville, sc
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: isomac tea, riviera lever
Grinder: mazzer major, isomac gran...
Vac Pot: dirt devil lx
Drip: wouldn't dare
Roaster: i-roast
Posted Sun Feb 13, 2005, 10:57pm
Subject: Re: good brew in the atlanta-charlotte-charleston triangle
 

btw, welcome to the list, navybean. good to see more local knowledge here.


Carolina Coffee Roasters and Coffee Underground are both outstanding roaster/retailers.

actually, the underground is not a roaster. just a very good retailer.

there's a guy who roasted high-end blends (read: expensive) for a number of years and supplied a niche of clients ... didn't seem to want to expand much, but his stuff was good. several downtown joints used his blends for awhile. metro coffee roasters? i think that was it.

anyone know what happened to him? he still around?

 
the blog: http://ben.szobody.com
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NavyBean
Senior Member


Joined: 13 Feb 2005
Posts: 16
Location: Seminole, Fl
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Electra Leva
Grinder: Nuova Simonelli MCF
Vac Pot: Bialetti 6 cup
Posted Mon Feb 14, 2005, 4:20pm
Subject: Re: good brew in the atlanta-charlotte-charleston triangle
 

Thanks for the welcome.  However, I am not local but I do travel quite a bit.  Do not despair about the lack of Greenville talent in the SERBC, most states in the SE where not represented, let alone municipalities. Probably due to the location, Chapel Hill is far away from most of the region and not that easy to get to.  It is much the same in many of the regions, even the NW (with Seattle and Portland baristas doing most of the competing.  As for Coffee Underground not being a roaster/retailer, go look in the theatre.  And the Baristas at CCR must be better trained (and in better shape) because they are pulling shots on a lever, requiring more training and a better base knowledge of espresso extraction. Don't know much about Charlotte, though.
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e61brewski
Senior Member
e61brewski
Joined: 7 Dec 2004
Posts: 131
Location: greenville, sc
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: isomac tea, riviera lever
Grinder: mazzer major, isomac gran...
Vac Pot: dirt devil lx
Drip: wouldn't dare
Roaster: i-roast
Posted Mon Feb 14, 2005, 8:49pm
Subject: Re: good brew in the atlanta-charlotte-charleston triangle
 

i saw that you weren't local on your bio -- i was referring to your "local knowledge." which leads me to ask again: since you travel so much, is there anything better than what we have in town in the georgia/carolinas area? or is the underground/ccr tops in your mind for the 200-mile radius?

i know what you're talking about in the underground theatre. however, i believe they still use west end beans for their sold drinks (unless they've switched recently) and do not roast their own espresso blend used in the cafe. being a newspaper reporter who has written about west end in the past, it would be inappropriate for me to give much of an opinion on the product.

one thing i'm becoming more convinced of: the baristas at ccr seem to be trained well. i'm going to put some more of their straight shots to the test soon (as mentioned before, it's the commercial shopping center location that has always turned me off -- but that's no dissing their brews).

as a lever guy myself, i'd like to compare notes.

the question still stands: outside of greenville, where should i go?! (i'll be in chapel hill in a couple weeks, and plan to hop around there a bit)

 
the blog: http://ben.szobody.com
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coffeegoddess
Senior Member
coffeegoddess
Joined: 23 Mar 2004
Posts: 29
Location: south carolina
Expertise: Pro Barista

Espresso: la marzocco
Grinder: mazzer luigi
Drip: bunn
Roaster: ambex
Posted Mon Feb 21, 2005, 11:51am
Subject: Re: good brew in the atlanta-charlotte-charleston triangle
 

actually, jarvis, at coffee underground just started roasting his own beans.  he is using an ambex and gets his beans from cafe imports.  


and i know you werent disputing the current coffeehouses, i was just adding a VERY personal note about what may have not been a great impression for you about CCR.

and  i agree about the night time ambience.  it could be in a better location for say, live music and dining, but we do pretty well for a roaster in a strip center.

and i am not sure about Metro roasters, but there was that guy at West Ens who roasts for a lot of local places as well.

be well and come by and see us.  
~cg
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