Cooper & Co

  • Child Labour

    Dispatches on Channel 4 last night (2/3/20) raised the thorny issue of child labour in coffee being purchased by such behemoths as Starbucks and Nestle from Guatemala. Simply put, the pickers are being paid so little money that families have no choice but to get their kids working from a young age so that they can put food on the table.
  • Lessons from Honduras (Part 11)

    Every time I visit a country where coffee is grown I am struck by the resilience of those at the very beginning of the coffee journey. You can’t help but have enormous respect for the extraordinary effort that is made to achieve the quality of the coffee that we have the enormous pleasure of consuming. Thankfully Honduras is a coffee drinking nation and can enjoy some of the fruits of their labour.
  • Coagriscal and XOL Chocolate Factory (Part 10)

    We’re staying in Hotel Bethania, Copan. It’s an odd mix. My “room” is more like an apartment with a huge entrance hall, two bedrooms and a bathroom. Complete overkill but then I didn’t book it so I guess I shouldn’t complain. However for all the surface glamour getting the shower to produce any water, hot or cold proved to be a challenge. Downstairs there was no sign of a breakfast offer. So a coffee and a muffin had to suffice. It reminded me of the slightly risqué term “all fur coat and no knickers!”
  • London Coffee Festival

    This festival has become one of the highlights of the year for my industry and this year I took two members of our team to experience the energy and enthusiasm that currently resides in our industry.
  • Bettys!

    Post the steroidal experience of the London Coffee Festival and all that is Brexit we took a few days out “up north”. This included a visit to probably the most famous tea room in England, Bettys of Harrogate. The contrast in style is so extreme that it’s hard to believe that Edwardian elegance still has any relevance in today’s market. However the permanent queue outside Bettys would make a hipster choke on their single estate flat white and proves that you can’t beat a well delivered authentic experience. 
  • Filter Coffee - A New Dawn.

    No doubt, like many of you, I’ve been making copious amounts of coffee as both a revival tool and for sheer pleasure over the holiday period. Usually on an average working day I’ll be drinking a selection of espresso based drinks from our trusty La Marzocco machine at our Halkett Place, Jersey shop where my office is also located. I’ve become so acclimatised to the punch that my double shot espresso based beverage delivers that anything less would, you might think, be barely worthy of comment. However, over the Christmas period I’ve been re-discovering the delight that is filter coffee.
  • Coffees of the year 2018

    It’s that time of the year when I like to review some of the incredible coffees we’ve seen this year. As I continually tell anyone who’ll listen to me we live in a golden age of coffee. The work at origin that goes into setting such a high bar is truly humbling and it’s tragic that so much is simply sold as commodity and left to the vagaries of New York “c” and a handful of hedge fund managers.
  • Making the most of that special coffee and tea you bought this Christmas

    A question we get asked a lot at this time of year is; “which is the best way to make coffee?”, and like all questions of this nature is almost impossible to answer as it really does depend upon individual taste. In our cafés for instance we make cappuccinos with ½ a shot of coffee through to 2 shots. Milk can be either “dry” or “wet”, super hot or just warm, chocolate topping or none, and that is just one drink.
  • Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee

    Each year we find ourselves on tenterhooks as we await confirmation that the coffee has reached Jersey. Of course this year was no different. Just as the coffee was about to leave Southampton a storm blew up and the boat was cancelled. Nothing particularly unusual there you might think, but you’d be wrong.
  • The Problem With Coffee Capsules

    It’s a decade since a book with the intriguing title “Nudge” was published. Written by Cass Sunstein and Richard Thaler it has had a profound influence on Government and business around the world. Just recently the BBC ran a programme titled “Nudge, nudge” to celebrate its publication. https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0b90xc6
  • DR Congo – Kawa Kanzururu Co-op coffee

    I think it is quite miraculous that we are able to source coffee from The Democratic Republic of Congo. Not only is it rewarding to receive, it is also great coffee. One day I hope I'll pay a visit to these amazing producers but for now all I can do is write about the background to a country that has been devastated by war and disease.
  • Lazy Sunday

    For the first time forever I had Sunday off (normally I’ll be opening our busy waterfront café). I’d forgotten how carefree this day once was so many years ago before life got in the way.