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November 2004 Newsletter

 As a follow up to last month's "guru" list, , I thought I'd go through the various coffee reference books that I consult most often. Note that attempting to buy most of these in Australia is probably futile, but that Amazon and the SCAA website are your friends.

 A good book for the average reader is "The World Encyclopedia of Coffee" by Mary Banks, Christine McFadden and Catherine Atkinson. While its coverage of espresso is minimal, the historical and growing region info is excellent. Overall the data on brewing, recipes and other interesting stuff is pretty good.

 An "Oldy but Goody" is "The Complete Book of Coffee" by Harry Rolnick, although at times it reads like an ad for the Melitta company, who both commissioned and published the book. A relatively recent book with accurate but USA-centric information is "Coffee Basics" by Kevin Knox and Julie Sheldon Huffaker.

 If you want to get into coffee classics, there are two books that deserve the label. The first is "All About Coffee", 2nd Edition, by William Ukers. Not too coincidentally, a facsimile edition was lovingly published a few years ago by the SCAA, with the original (and much good advice) provided by Don Schoenholt.

 "All About Coffee" was no exaggeration, as Ukers has just about everything known to the trade in 1935. It's an interesting read even today, and it's surprising how much is still relevant.

 The other much more recent classic is "Uncommon Grounds" by Mark Pendergrast, which covers the history of coffee in the USA and how mega-companies reduced once great organizations to lowest common denominator dreck sellers run by accountants.

 Three reference books that I consult often are "Espresso Coffee: The Chemistry of Quality" by Andrea and Ernesto Illy, "Coffees of the World" by Philippe Jobin and "The Coffee Cuppers Handbook" by Ted Lingle. All three are essential reading for specialty roasters. If you had all the above books in your coffee library you would be better informed about coffee than 90% of the local (and USA, for that matter) professionals.

 In other news, I'm out of stock of Rancilio products as Rancilio have been unable to meet the demand for the Silvia. IF my shipment (already delayed by a month) leaves on time, I should be back in business mid - December. Imat stocks are quite good, though, as are laScala machines.

 There has been a minor design change to the Butterfly cup tray, which now allows more heat to reach the cups and traps less inside the machine.

 This Month's special coffee is an old favourite,

 Ethiopian Yirgacheffe $36.00/kg

 It's a bit different to last year's crop; the citrus flavour and aroma are more "pink grapefruit" than lemon and it's a far more complex coffee, with notable changes in taste and texture as it cools. In response to the many, many requests, the Yemen Mokha Ismaili WILL be the December special coffee, BUT!

 1) I won't be taking advance orders; it will go up on the website at the same time as the newsletter.

 2) There may be quantity limits on orders, depending on how much green coffee I receive.

 3) There won't be any green coffee available for sale.

 Sorry, but if I accepted orders in advance I would already have sold 2/3 of the stock I hope to have. You'll just have to keep an eye out for the newsletter.