Blog Post Archive

Manumit - Uganda Budwale

Back in July, I received a really cute package from the lovely Esther (and team) at Manumit 




I came across Manumit earlier this year on Instagram, and fell in love with their ethics and their entire ethos towards business and freedom through coffee.


So what's Manumit all about?


Every 30 seconds someone becomes a slave.
Manumit offers dignity and hope to survivors of modern slavery through training and employment.
Our coffee is roasted by men and women who have suffered horrendous exploitation at the hands of traffickers and modern slave traders but are now rebuilding their lives.
At our Cardiff based roastery, we produce excellent coffee that combats modern slavery on 3 levels
- Sourcing specialty coffee beans from ethical, slavery free suppliers.
- Training and employing survivors of modern slavery as coffee roasters.
- Investing all profits in local and international anti-slavery projects.
Together we are providing #FreedomThroughCoffee

On the Manumit website, you can go over and read some of the stories from the brave individuals who have overcome slavery and are trying to rebuild their lives. 


I had the absolute pleasure of having numerous chats with Esther over at the Coffee House Project 2019 (blog post coming soon) and I can honestly say that she is one of the most loveliest, bubbly, and down to earth person I have ever met (and she gives good hugs!) 



Onto their coffee - 




I was very kindly sent over a cheeky little bag of Ugandan, Budwale and damn, was it a treat. 

I played around with a lot of recipes, but came to the conclusion that 17g through a V60, came out amazingly. 


The beans 
Budwale, Uganda
Washed Process
Taste Notes - Milk Chocolate, Citrus, Gorgeous




V60 Brew 

17g of Coffee 
275ml of Water
2 Minute 30 Second Total Brew Time
(including 40ml water bloom for 25 second)




Although it was super delicious with every brew recipe I tried, the 17g recipe, really brought those chocolate notes straight to the surface, with some underlying citrus acidity, it was a perfect well rounded cup. It was incredibly smooth for the entire cup, even as it was cooling.





What Manumit are doing as a company is absolutely incredible - and I cant wait to get more coffee from them (spoiler alert, more blog posts from Manumit coming soon) 


Find Manumit 

Website - here
Instagram - here
Twitter - here 
Facebook - here

#FreedomThroughCoffee
#DoYouManumit











Brewbox - Subscription Box

So, this is a bit crazy - as of this blog post going live, I have officially posted 100 (YES 100) posts on The Coffee Life - that is absolutely crazy to think about, throughout the year and a half over 100 posts have gone out on this website, and I cannot thank everyone enough who takes the time out of their day to read ANY of my posts, it definitely means more than you can ever know. THANK YOU.

HAPPY 100 POSTS TO ME!



Onto today's topic, we're talking about the Irish subscription box called Brewbox - I was actually lucky enough to win this box (wooooo) and they kindly sent me over an amazing box - and like the last few posts, it's a bit late, I actually received this box at the end of June/beginning of July, but none the less, as I'm catching up with blog posts, I'm going to rave about this lovely box.



So who are Brewbox? 

"We hand pick the highest quality coffees just for our subscribers. As well as coffee, you'll also receive monthly newsletters with all the info behind your delicious cup
We partner with the best - we source the best coffee that's in season from Ireland and Europe to bring a unique coffee experience to your doorstep every month"

So, what do you get in a Brew Box?

- Choose to receive between 1 and 3 x 250g coffee (whole bean) each month
- Free tracked delivery to Ireland and EU
- Newest issue of Caffeine Magazine every second month
- Different roasters every month including one Irish and one European
- Ability to change or pause subscriptions at any time
- Exclusive access to our members only area with exclusive content and videos, including discounted prices on brewing equipment and huskee cups
- All subscriptions are sent in recycled packaging
- Occasional extra surprises! 




Brew box also offer 3 types of subscription boxes 

1. Filter from €21
2. Espresso from €21
3. Nespresso from €20

As well as offering monthly payments they also have a great way to pay in advance, you can purchase 6 or 12 months with a bit of a discount if you know you want a Brew Box every month (and you also get a free huskee cup when you purchase a 6 or 12 month)



We'll move onto the box - it arrived in this gorgeous bright orange packaging (incidentally my favourite colour) 


Brew Box have really got their packaging down and on point, I love that you can know just by a glance who then company is, and the "FRESH COFFEE" on the side of the box brings it all together.



And of course no box is complete without a classic sticker.




Inside the box was a treat - I love that it was lined with a part of a coffee sack, it really made the box special.

It also came with a very (full) brewing guide as well as CHAR magazine.







This brew guide is filled with all of the ways you could ever brew with your box, including all three of the options for their boxes. Filter, espresso and nespresso.

The guide gives you everything you will need
- What brewing equipment you'll need
- How to prepare the coffee at home
- How to properly store coffee 
- Coffee ratios
- And all the coffee recipes for whatever method you're brewing with.





About the coffee

Bonanza Coffee Roasters

"Our job is to roast the coffee, we do this to the best old techniques combined with the best of new techniques continually looking for the best production methods.
Roasting Coffee - our idea of roasting is the opposite of what is commonly regarded as the way to roast coffee, which is, we roast it as little as possible, enough to fully develop all flavours, with the aim to highlight what makes the coffee distinct. The resulting cup should be clean, clear and pure" 


Ethiopia 
Uraga Samii
Process - Washed
Taste Notes - Pomelo, Blackcurrant and Elderflower 


V60 Brew
16g of Coffee 
300ml of Water 
40ml Bloom for 30 Seconds
3 Minute 30 Second Total Brew Time 



This brew came through as a really subtle currant flavour, with little hints of citrus poking through. 
As it cooled, I definitely got more hints towards the citrus side, but it just made the brew more delicious.



I also brewed it through Aeropress

14g of Coffee 
245ml of Water
30 Second Bloom
2 Minute 15 Total Brew Time

This method of brewing really brought out more of the deep curranty notes, equally as delicious but I definitely preferred the more subtle notes from the V60.



I cant wait to try out more from Bonanza because if this bag was anything to go by, these guys know what they're doing.

Find Bonanza on social media
Website - here
Instagram - here
Facebook - here




A huge thank you to Brewbox for letting me try out this box, and I definitely cant wait to try another box out some time in the future.

Find Brewbox on social media
Website - here
Instagram - here
Facebook - here






Brighton Coffee Festival 2019

Brighton, my favourite place in the UK. 
When I found out they were holding their very own coffee festival this year, I practically screamed - I'd been looking forward to this Coffee Festival for months, and not to ruin the blog post, but it did not disappoint 



After a lovely 2 hour drive at 6am to Brighton after still not recovering from Brighton Pride the weekend before and then working 5 days straight, I was in tip top (very over-tired, running on empty) shape. 
None the less, I beat the traffic, and went for a lovely walk around the (quiet) beach and around the lanes, until a coffee shop opened 

I stumbled across Lost In The Lanes Cafe (a fantastic and real creative name, since I was literally wandering down lanes) - I had a fab long black and a lovely chat with the Barista about how she was sad she wasn't able to get out of work to go to the festival (please let the lovely lady have the day off for 2020 BCF!!!!)




Swiftly heading to the festival ---




 The festival was held in Brighton's famous Open Market, the perfect location for the event - and unlike some coffee events, the staff and volunteers were so lovely, smiley, knew what they were doing and just generally made the day so much easier for everyone


(now it turns out I got a bit excited about the day and took around 5 photos total - so the lovely people at BCF said I could use some from their Facebook albums (what legends!) so enjoy these GOOD photos because lets be honest, this puts my photography to SHAME) 





Iz and I sat down for the majority of the talks that were held - Including "how to set up your own coffee shop" (pictured above) which was a really interesting talk, and definitely put into perspective how much there is to think about if you want to have your own cafe 

Although my favourite talk of the day came from Tash from Pharmacie Coffee Roasters, it was an incredible talk about how discrimination, racism, sexism, and transphobia is still very much prominent in the Coffee Industry. 
Very eye opening and insightful, and she has the voice of an angel, I could listen to her speak for hours



As per tradition, Izzy and I got our regular Coffee Festival selfie and boomerang - would it be the same without it?



My highlights from Brighton Coffee Festival 

- Seeing both Ben + Ella (@baristaprogress / @mother.pucker) absolutely smash it in the Latte Art Throwdown
- Getting a Brighton Coffee Guide (because now I'll never run out of coffee places to go when I'm next in Brighton)
- Finally getting to try coffees from Pharmacie, Red Roaster Coffee, Horsham Coffee Roasters and getting to chat to everyone!! 
- The art-work from Pelicano Coffee Company was insane 
- The incredible talks (yes I'm bringing them up again) I think it's a vital part of any Coffee Festival to have talks about the industry, whichever part they may be talking about 
 - Getting to meet and network to so many different people
- THERE WERE SO MANY DOGS THERE (the true highlight) 


At least the photographers made me look good, cant complain about that



I got given a cheeky little sample from Red Roaster Coffee, which I thought I'd do a quick lil section on it because it was YUM


About this coffee -

Red Roaster Coffee Co - Roasted in Brighton
Kinini Washing Station
Rwanda Cocatu 
Red Bourbon
1800-2500masl
Washed Process
Taste - Blackcurrant, Hibiscus, Sugarcane 

Through V60 
17g of Coffee
275ml of Water
inc 40ml bloom for 25 seconds
2 minute 25 total brew time

I have tried endless Rwandans this year, but I wont lie this is up there with the top ones I have tried this year - it was super mellow, had citrus'y tea like flavours, super light and a delight to drink 





I think that pretty much sums up the first ever Brighton Coffee Festival - It was incredible, and I really cant wait until next year


What were your highlights from Brighton Coffee Festival? 


Find Brighton Coffee Festival 

Instagram - here
Website - here 
Info on 2020 BCF - here
Twitter - here