Hello and happy 2017! Wanted to drop you a line and let you know what we have been up to! We have been super busy the past few months roasting beans for the tri state area, fulfuilling our online "ship to your door" service, researching and finding new coffees, purchasing a commercial coffee roaster, and working on our brick and mortar coffee bar & roastery!
Ill give you a quick synopsis of the past few months...
OCTOBER 2016 - This past October I flew out to Oklahoma City, OK to the US ROASTER CORP factory to view, test, and get trained on EFB's new commercial coffee roaster! Every piece of this roaster was handmade in the USA at this facility and I got to shake hands and meet the faces of the people who hand built this beautiful machine. I spent the morning getting trained on the machine and they let me loose in the afternoon with hundreds of lbs of green coffee and said "roast as much as you like..." They were impressed by my work and I ended up roasting over 80lbs of coffee for their shop! It was an incredible day and left there very inspired and excited to get the roaster to Quincy. They had to make a few modifications per my request and is now ready to ship to Quincy IL as soon as the building is finished!
NOVEMBER 2016 - We released our first single origin blend, a seasonal release called "Giving Thanks Blend" combining our popular Sumatran beans with our Guatemalan beans finishing with a full body, soft citrus and spice notes. It was received very well and will be back for 2017! We also started a partnership with The Maine Course in downtown Quincy IL and they started exclusively using EFB organic coffee beans on their coffee menu! We are thrilled to be working with the talented Chef Kevin and if you havent had a chance to eat at his establishment...take an evening to experience his place and awesome food! On to building news we had a little stall in construction due to switching contractors and the new contractor picked up on phase two of the 601 building (Yoga studio). Once the yoga studio is finished phase 3 (coffee bar & roastery) will be built in the mean time we keep roasting beans!
DECEMBER 2016 - We released our seasonal favorite "Holiday Cheer" featuring our Sumatran beans with taste notes of vanilla, citrus, and cinnamon! On the building of EFB we met with contractors and decided to restore and save the original tin ceiling in the building! I also took a buisness trip to the US Virgin Islands to explore organic farming within the "rainforest" area on the island of St. Croix, VI as well as researching the coffee market and room for organic coffee roasting business on the island. While on the island we took a day to visit the Captain Morgan Rum Distillery to see how the rum is produced and also worked out a deal to purchase some of the charred barrels flavored with the spices and rum that once held Captain Morgan Rum! Stay tuned in 2017 for that fun coffee collaboration !
JANUARY 2017 - The yoga studio is about a day away from being finished which means phase 2 is almost complete and construction for EFB (phase 3) will begin! I know its pushed farther back than originally planned but we continue to roll with punches and keep trucking along as we continue to find all the surprises of remodeling an old building. This has given me time to really fine tune the roasting process and produce some quality beans that I am proud of featuring and providing for the community.
MORE IN 2017 - After completion of the coffee bar & roastery phase 4 will begin with the build out of 3 huge apartments above Grown N Gathered and the coffee bar! Michele (owner of Grown N Gathered/Yoga7even) has secured a grant which will bring unique downtown living to the community! More info coming with that as soon as construction begins.
Thank you for your continuous support and stop in at Grown N Gathered "your neighborhood grocer" to grab some coffee beans, a cup of coffee, or some groceries!
Like us on our facebook page and subscribe to our newsletter on our website www.efbcoffee.com for updates and news! Also check out our "ship to your" door service on our website and have fresh roasted beans delivered to your doorstep!
Have a great 2017 and see you soon!
First off I would like to say thank you for taking the time to check out our page and hopefully you have had a chance to check out some of the organic coffees we offer. We are very passionate about a healthier lifestyle and bringing awareness of specialty coffee by roasting and brewing the best organic fair trade coffee from around the world right here in downtown Quincy, IL.
Our goal is to build a community within and around our company by bringing people together one cup at a time with "a cup of coffee you can feel good about." We purchase our green coffee beans from small farmers, largely made up of indigenous peoples working hard to maintain their culture and lifestyles in a hostile world, that use no pesticides or chemicals when growing our beans. We purchase those beans directly from the farmers and not through a middleman and purchase at or above the international fair trade price. Know with every cup of EFB coffee that you have played a part in helping small farmers that grew your coffee, supported a local business that helps build your community, as well as get to enjoy a cup of coffee that is full of antioxidants and chemical free. That is why we adopted the motto "a cup of coffee YOU can feel good about."
-Your Local Roaster, Ryan
We are still under construction at our new location downtown (104 N 6th St) but are still roasting and pumping out some fantastic tasting coffees and selling them in our partner store Grown-N-Gathered (601 Maine St). In the upcoming weeks we are looking to offer some coffee classes in Grown N Gathered as well as some pour-over pop up shops that feature some organic snacks that pair well with the coffee to enhance the taste notes of the coffees from their specific origin. Our next event is scheduled for October 22 at Grown N Gathered. Info is here
BEANS TO YOUR DOOR
Did you know you can have EFB coffee sent directly to your door through our Subscription program via our website? Get an order shipped to you here! Or you can stop by our partner store Grown-N-Gathered at 601 Maine St in Quincy, IL and grab a bag of our freshly roasted coffee!
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As I was brainstorming about this weeks blog and thinking about what I would write about, I look up at my wall and see the framed piece of paper with my name that says "Master of Education" which immediately makes me smile. The reason I smile is because its a reminder of how much I love teaching. Education and teaching, along with music and coffee are great passions of mine. As a new school year approaches and I get ready to enter my 14th year as a public school educator I thought why not put some of my passion of education to use and open up a conversation about coffee to discuss the word roastery and what exactly are we creating in our new space on Maine Street!
For todays class we will start with ----Chapter 1 - Is "Roastery" even a word?
Well to start my spell check does not recognize it as a word which led me to look it up in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Nope not there. Really! Go check if you don't believe me...I was also amazed that a word my 6th grade teacher taught me how to spell and was supposedly supposed to be the longest word in the dictionary was not there either! Antidisestablishmentarianism. You can check that one too ;) What is going on?
Chapter 2 - What exactly is a roastery?
Simply put it is a place where coffee is roasted using a commercial drum roaster. Roasting coffee transforms the chemical and physical properties of green coffee beans into roasted coffee products. The roasting process is what produces the characteristic flavor of coffee by causing the green coffee beans to change in taste.
Bonus Fun Fact:The word came from this movement of producing high-quality coffee, and consider coffee as an artisanal foodstuff, like wine, rather than a commodity. That movement is referred to as Third Wave of Coffee. (1st wave being: Growing coffee consumption exponentially, and 2nd wave being: the defining and enjoyment of specialty coffee.)
Chapter 3 - Electric Fountain Brewing Coffee Bar & Roastery - How are we different?
With all that being said and how Electric Fountain Brewing is different than any other coffee shop in Quincy (including all name brand big coffee chains) is that EFB will be the home of Quincy IL's only roastery! We will roast all of our own coffee beans in house at our location at 6th and Maine!
All restaurants have to source their coffee somewhere. Majority of the businesses around the area are having to purchase roasted coffee from roasteries in St. Louis, MO. Electric Fountain Brewing is unique to Quincy because we will be the only local roastery within a 110mile radius of Quincy! The closest ones being in St. Louis, MO, Columbia, MO, and Springfield IL.
Chapter 4 - How do we find the farmers and the best green beans all over the world?
I am thrilled to have a small team that I collaborate with located on both east and west coasts that do the traveling for me! They travel around the world finding the best organically grown coffee beans that DO NOT use pesticides or chemicals when growing their beans. We pride ourselves in paying those farmers a fair wage and sometimes as much as three times the amount of "fair trade" prices and other coffee companies. We primarily focus on finding "single origin" coffee farms where it is coffee grown within a single known geographic origin. Sometimes this is a single farm, or a specific collection of beans from a single country. The name of the coffee is then usually the place it was grown to whatever degree available. Single-origins are viewed by some as a way to get a specific taste, and some independent coffee shops have found that this gives them a way to add value over large chains.
Once we find a quality bean the team works out the details of getting those beans into the US and shipped to Quincy. From there I take the green coffee beans and roast them to different flavor profiles ( with our 2 small commercial drum roasters) based on where they are grown to bring out the best taste for that region.
Life is too short to drink bad coffee especially coffee that is mass produced with the help of chemicals and pesticides.
So support your local organic roaster, support the work that goes into farming chemical free, support our effort of bringing the best chemical free beans from around the world to downtown Quincy for a tastier, healthier, cleaner cup of coffee. Our mission is to provide you with "a cup of coffee that you can feel good about. "
3. Third Wave Coffee Shops
4. Single Origin
5. Organically grown
This week we say farewell to the original location of Grown-N-Gathered!
The little guy has got to big for its 729 Hampshire pants and is moving this Sunday to the new home at the new building at 601 Maine Street!!
(At the bottom is a retro pic of the new building at 6th & Maine back in the day!)
Woot woot! The new space will be 3 times the size of the original location plus a full smoothie bar and wine bar. Yes Wine bar!
Fun fact: Grown N Gathered has always had a liquor license and served packaged beer and wine to go....and even has a fun barrel of wine on draft that will all be going to the new location as well!
So that means events like Blues in the District you can stop in and fill up with one of GNGs refillable wine bottles or your own cooler with GNG's selection of brews on your walk over to the park or if you run out you can walk a block to 6th & Maine and fill up again!
Michele W's - Grown N Gathered will be the first installment of the 3 business venture going into her new big building on the corner of 6th & Maine! Next up is her Quincy Yoga studio Yoga7even, followed by my new startup Electric Fountain Brewing Coffee Bar & Roastery!
Again we will miss and are thankful for the little incubator space on 729 Hampshire owned by Austin Properties where GNG got its start and where the first bags of Electric Fountain Brewing organic coffee were first sold but we are even more excited about the opportunity to expand and be in the heart of "The District" in downtown Quincy!
If you haven't stopped into Grown N Gathered yet you should definitely stop in and say hi, grab some groceries, a smoothie, a bag of EFB coffee beans, or just check out the GNG part of the building.
Construction will continue in the other parts of the building as GNG continues business as usual in the new location and I look forward to some "pop up coffee bar" days in GNG until the Electric Fountain Brewing Coffee Bar & Roastery part gets complete!
So "Live Like a Local" and come see us at 601 Maine Street in the heart of "The District" in downtown Quincy!
Hello and happy RAGBRAI week! Usually at this point in the summer I am on a charter bus being shuttled to the starting Missouri River town in Western Iowa ready to participate in what is known as RAGBRAI.
What exactly is RAGBRAI you may ask? It's the Registers Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa organized by The Des Moines Register and going from west to east across the U.S. state of Iowa, that draws recreational riders from across the United States and many foreign countries. First held in 1973, RAGBRAI is the largest bike-touring event in the world. The ride attracts nearly 10000 week long riders plus the addition of many riders that only ride a day or two.
For the past 4 years I have got to be a part of this event and Iowa tradition where we start by dipping our back bicycle tire in the Missouri River, ride our bicycle across Iowa for 7 days, camp in tents each night, and experiencing the hidden beauty of Iowa culminating with dipping our front tire in the Mississippi River.
Each night there is a host town that features a carnival of events in their downtown with food, concerts, and fun. The downtowns of these small overnight host towns turn into a huge moneymaking ventures for small local businesses with thousands of riders hungry and looking for fun before they head out at the crack of dawn the next day. I've seen some great concerts over my past years participating and always dreamed of being able to play on the RAGBRAI stage at an event I am so passionate about.
I knew in the back of my mind with this new coffee adventure I needed to stick around to help out with the new 601 building along with help support and execute Michele's plan to get Grown N Gathered in the building by the deadline of two weeks from now :) ! So I ended up taking a hiatus from traveling to Iowa to participate in RAGBRAI this week but since I trained all season I decided to just put in the miles around Quincy area this week to still support the cycling community.
Even though putting in those miles around the area this week is fun I miss getting to experience the people, concerts, and festivities of the overnight towns. Every town tries to put on a better show and welcome for the riders and hire out some of the best entertainment and music they can work in their budget. This year the weeks biggest concert is on Thursday night in Ottumwa IA with RICK SPRINGFIELD! (his hit song was "Jessie's Girl") Anyway Ottumwa put out a contest wanting bands to submit a video of a song and the winner would be one of the opening acts for Rick Springfield!
On a whim since I knew I wouldn't be able to participate the full week and ride in this years event AND because Bad Wolf Media (badwolfmedia.net) graciously recorded a video of my band THE HOOK & THE HUSTLE a week prior to the contest I submitted the video he recorded which you can view here https://youtu.be/bfH-w4UB7ag.
Well wouldn't you know it...after a few weeks of submitting the video I ended up getting a call from the organizers in Ottumwa. They informed me that they chose our video and that we were the winners of that contest! So I WILL be making a trip to RAGBRAI afterall this year..for one night to open up for Rick Springfield in Ottumwa, IA with my band The Hook & The Hustle! (www.hookhustle.com)
Im excited to feature our band at this event and makes this year a little more special for me. It will be a memory that will stick with me along with all the other awesome times I have encountered on these excursions across Iowa. One of those memories I will never forget was encountering the best cup of coffee I've ever had. It was from a coffee roaster from Virginia that sat up on the side of the road everyday of RAGBRAI usually within the first 15miles of each day of the event. They would just set up their small operation in someone's yard or on the side of the road. But man I rode my little heart out those first 15 miles each day just looking for the "Fair Trade Organic Coffee"....the person working the cash register literally said that when you bought a cup.
Me: I would love to purchase a cup of coffee...
Worker: "One cup of Fair Trade Organic Coffee coming right up"
Loved it. I still remember the taste but most importantly I remember the friends I shared that cup of coffee with (see photo above). That cup really made me start researching about what "Fair trade" & "Organic" coffees were about and really added fuel to the fire of me wanting to launch an Organic Coffee Bar & Roastery in Quincy. That clean cup of coffee I had for the first time 4 years ago has stuck with me and something I continue to search out each year of RAGBRAI. I hope to create that cup or an even better cup of "Fair Trade Organic Coffee" for the community of Quincy with Electric Fountain Brewing.
So hop on your bicycle, grab a cup of Electric Fountain Brewing's organic coffee, and create a memory with friends!
Also as you commute through life in your vehicle please keep an eye out for cyclists. Illinois has a law that you must pass bicyclists slowly and allow at least 3 feet. 😃 So thank you in advance for being aware and for helping make our city more of a cycling supportive community!
When I see an adult on a bicycle, I do not despair for the future of the human race. -H.G. Wells
...and by friend I mean this fun little tool that I have never used before! Haha this weekend our friends Laura and Chase stopped by to see the building and I greeted them with this pose and power tool stating "this is what I do when I don't play gigs!" Very rarely do I get a weekend off from playing live but it was nice to invest some time and manual labor into the new building.
While Michele and the contractor are focusing on the Grown N Gathered part of the building I wanted to expose a little more brick in the part of the building where EFB will set up shop. (See photos below)
...and speaking of brick...also had some fun moving over 1000 bricks one by one into a truck, out of the truck, into a wheel barrow, dump into the patio area, stack and repeat :)
Patio area!? Why yes...have been working on the best part of the building that not a lot of people know exists...yet. (shhh...the building comes with an enclosed courtyard with trees that is only accessible through the coffee shop or Grown N Gathered)
This area was in pretty rough condition so we cleaned out this space, tilled the ground, did some yard-work, then Michele wanted 1500 bricks back there to build a patio. So my weekend began and we started laying brick pavers so that we can turn it into a super cool patio space for the community to enjoy the weather, conversation, and some EFB Coffee!
It was a productive weekend as we continue to chip away at the demo and remodel of this big ole building and I add another power-tool to my list of equipment I sort of know how to use.
With that being said this weekend taught me the following:
2. youtube is awesome for learning about power-tools and laying brick pavers
3. I'm not just a sensitive musician
4. I can carry 55 bricks in a wheel barrow and I sweat more than the average human
5. Rev : el : ry (Revelry) - google it ;)
While the contractors are working away on the new building I have been taking the time to travel to "experience" good coffee in bigger cities so that I can bring back ideas and supply our community with big city fun to our sweet home of Quincy IL! You might ask...why did he put quotations around experience?
Well my friends I did that because that is the whole concept of Electric Fountain Brewing. I want to provide you with a "coffee experience." When you come get a coffee or espresso at our new building I want you to feel at home and enjoy the best possible cup of coffee we can make for you. We want to show you different ways to prepare or brew coffee to get the taste notes of that coffees homeland in your cup. I want you to "experience" community within this shop where all people mesh together share ideas, collaborate, have meetings, talk, or just a place where its ok to say something nice to someone here or give a stranger a high five :)
Electric Fountain Brewing - why this name? Two reasons...1. Growing up the first memory I have of coffee is from my grandparents at their local business. I remember my grandmother always having her coffee and letting me try a sip. My brother and I spent a lot of time at that shop of theirs and over the years my grandparents became huge supporters of my music career and were huge inspirations in my life. Their last name - Fountain. Their business - Fountain Electric (my grandfather was an electrician and my grandmother was the office manager, two person local business..) it makes me smile just thinking about those two in their day running that business while my brother and I running like wild children around the shop. That inspired me to switch the name around to Electric Fountain - to honor my grandparents and seeing their name on my logo is a way to keep me focused, grounded, and a smile on my face.
Reason 2...and I just came to this revelation the other night.
A definition of "Electric" - having or producing a sudden sense of thrilling excitement.
A definition of "Fountain" - a source of a desirable quality
A definition of "Brewing" - make (tea or coffee) by mixing it with hot water.
Put those 3 things together and you have "An exciting, desirable quality cup of tea or coffee made with water"
Seems like the exact thing I am trying to do and something that needs to be "experienced." ;)
Here is our first go at blogging! Woo hoo. Anyway for those of you that haven't heard I have decided to make a long time dream a reality and currently working on opening a coffee bar and roastery in downtown Quincy!
Grown N Gathered owner Michele W. bought the old "Everything and the Kitchen Sink" building on 6th and Maine to triple the size of GNG along with being able to fit a bigger Yoga facility for YOGA7EVEN! I then talked Michele into letting me create my vision with an unused back part of the building on the 6th Street side.
These blocks of window will be coming down in the next few weeks so that I can put in a glass garage door and an entry door to the ELECTRIC FOUNTAIN BREWING COFFEE BAR & ROASTERY!I am in talks with US Roasting Corp out of Oklahoma City OK and have a commercial 3 Kilo Shop coffee roaster reserved to be delivered once the building finishes the remodel process. I will go more into detail about the building and my vision for this coffee bar and roastery is as the building progresses! So keep checking the blog or drive by the building and see whats new! 601 Maine Street!