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Glenburn Tea Estate pic‘Glenburn is a heavenly little plantation retreat that lies on a hillock above the banks of the River Rungeet, high in the Himalayas, overlooked by the mighty Kanchenjunga mountain range.

Started by a Scottish tea company in 1859, Glenburn then passed into the hands of one of India’s pioneering tea planting families – The Prakashes, One of India’s pioneering tea-planting families, we have, over the years, come to be known as the “Chaiwala family“ – which literally means “tea planters“.’

This fascinating setting has been inspired by the vineyard experiences found across Europe. How leaf tea is planted, cultivated and cropped, as well as made into the product we know on our local store shelves. The Glenburn Tea Estate experience is designed to educate, entertain and satisfy their visitor’s thirst for knowledge.

There are two bungalows to provide estate guests with elegant and comfortable accommodation. Each building has four suites, and has access to gardens, verandahs and terraces.

‘All meals, snacks and refreshments are included in the tariff, and we plan all the menus according to the select preferences of each guest. The menus comprise a range of cuisine – from interesting local fare and traditional Indian dishes, to exotic South-East Asian delicacies, and a variety of European dishes making full use of the fresh Italian herbs, and salad leaves we grow in our well-stocked kitchen garden. We try to source as much fruit, vegetables, herbs and spices as we can from our own garden, so feel free to plan your own menu based on what’s in season! Family recipes including Tea-Leaf Pakoras, Chocolate Brownies, Tibetan Momos and Burmese Khow Suey – all served to you with a discrete but attentive Glenburn touch’.

The Estate provides its own bread, marmalade, cakes and cookies for guests. The experience sounds sublime.

See more of the Glenburn Tea Estate in Kolkata on their equally elegant web pages here.

whiteCoffeecupPicWe have just added a range of coffee cups to our coffee retail page.

Whether you want to enjoy a great espresso at home, or find a thermal mug that can safely transport your brew – then our ‘coffee shop’ page is the place to look.

We have a range from some great suppliers for you to browse, including a range of great designer cups too.

Drink your latte in the company of Nigella Lawson, Maxwell Williams or just pick up a set of classic Bodum receptacles.

If you’re making a great cup of coffee, why not have a great cup to taste it from?

Great ideas for seasonal gifts too!

coffeeCupPic55The office is crowded. Your home workspace is full of cats and children. Head for town and get your laptop active in the nearest coffee shop.

Helping your creative or administrative juices get flowing with a great espresso. But where to go…? You need WorkSnug on your mobile phone.

This is great web resource for finding laptop working, mobile coffee drinking office nomad workspaces. The WorkSnug mantra is ‘…connecting mobile workers to the nearest and best places to work’.

Great for laptop friendly coffee shops, you can download a mobile app for iPhone, Android, Blackberry or Nokia devices.

The WorkSnug team have created an etiquette for coffee shop laptop ramblers too. It offers you ten rules for useful, considerate and reflective use of the coffee shop – in return for drinking some great coffee too, of course.

Useful pointers like don’t yell into your headset, check-in on Facebook to promote your new found space, don’t make calls without a head set and always, always be polite to coffee shop staff!

You can find the Code of Conduct for road warriors on the WorkSnug blog here.

Great coffee, hot laptop and Skype connected…you might even get some work done.

cuncodeCupPicWe recently came across this new concept – digital fabrication.

The design company team at cunicode set themselves the target of designing and creating a new coffee cup every day for a month.

You can see the results of their energy and imagination here. The concepts they work with are a long way from the potters wheel and the handcrafted cup.

I suspect to completely stock a coffee shop with these products would be a very expensive exercise indeed, at thirty to forty euros a go. However, as single ‘coffee art’ purchases for the discerning buyer they make a statement without doubt.

The finished products can be from Glazed Ceramics at Shapeways.

Have a look at the cunicode site, to see digital representations of the finished cups.

Really great coffee should have a really great cup, of course.

shoppingcartPic5We have just launched our online retail coffee and tea supply pages.

Our new shop page offers everyone a fantastic range of coffee. Whether you need to top up with that quick instant for the office, or something rather more special, which we recommend, then you will find something on our shop pages.

There is a great range of speciality teas available too. Why not try a warming fruit tea during the coming winter nights?

You can also find a very wide range of coffee making machinery, from a fantastic range of manufacturers, to suit every budget and taste.

Whether you are looking for the full bean to cup machine or just a simple tea press, then you can see a great range of products and prices – and read other customer reviews too.

When you add to your shopping cart, our shop and it’s deliveries are powered by Amazon.co.uk, we never see your financial or delivery instructions ever – you can click with confidence.

Why not get that coffee maker for Christmas this year?

We were recently reading a blog article ‘The Coffee Shop Fallacy’ by Rob Fitzpatrick of the ‘start up toolkit’ web site.

We particularly like Rob’s work the Startup Canvas, having featured it oncoffee Desk Pic

other blogs we publish as a business, thinking about enterprise culture and how young people get started in business.

However, back to coffee…

Rob quotes Max Levchin, co-founder of PayPal when younger, who espoused the idea that because people love a certain service or product, they think that they will derive even more pleasure and satisfaction from running a business in the same product or service.

The bitter reality for Levchin is that you actually have to be in love with the idea of running a business.

Starting a coffee business, mobile or building based, can be built on your love of Italy and getting that delicious sweetness and coffee sunshine in the cup.

However, the reality is early mornings, loading kit and supplies, arriving at venues with organisers unprepared for service delivery of our particular nature, wrangling with training issues, cash flow and security for your people and product in all their guises.

For Fitzpatrick the fallacy is the gap between the rosy remembrance of fabulous product or service and the often painful and fraught physicality of a startup. (How true: ed.)

However, we think you can have your cake and eat it! Yes you can strive to make great coffee, which your customers proceed to confirm to you, but you also need to believe in a business approach that fits with your ethics and have a desire to succeed that matches any business model for any service or product.

In other words, if you love coffee, but have or can acquire profound generic business skills you will succeed.

You can see Rob’s original post here.

Caffe Carino make great coffee.

mobileCoffeeExperimentArchitecture students in California are working on some fabulous and interesting designs for a mobile coffee cart.

Using new plastics donated by the Mitsubishi Corporation, staff and students at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco are busy creating a structure using this new material that pushes the envelope of design and utility.

They are certainly creating a coffee cart like no other. The modular, sectional build can be used, when finished for a variety of retail vending situations.

From the photographs available we can see that coffee dispensing in large internal floor space areas would be an ideal outcome for this piece of innovative design.

Have a look to at the images here, you need to use your imagination, but there is coffee magic in there…

The originating article for this blog is available at the online version of designboom – a world class design resource.

Caffe carino on the radioAnna at Caffe Carino has this week recorded an interview with BBC Radio Sheffield.The radio broadcast covers the areas of operation for Caffe Carino and how, as a young graduate, Anna chose the route of starting a business in Sheffield to kick start her career development.

With the sound of our Fracino coffee machine gurgling in the background you can hear the Caffe Carino team at work, as Anna describes the pleasures and pitfalls of the coffee life.

Adding her qualifications in food hygiene and catering management to her successful graduate studies in Business & Hospitality, Anna and her team can deliver great coffee and refreshments to your event, corporate occasion or private hire.

See our booking form on our Caffe Carino home page.

BBC Radio Sheffield – broadcast between 7.00am and 8.00am on Tuesday, 3rd May 2011. (Podcast available here after the broadcast…)

coffeeEntrepreneurPicWe were really pleased to see a feature on Anna at Caffe Carino in Enterprise Express this week.

This weekly e-publication for small businesses, created by the Federation for Small Businesses, is a great resource for traders and business people both in food and drink and across all other business sectors in South & East Yorkshire.

Anna is very happy to offer insights into starting a new business, reflecting upon both the current economic climate and getting started in business as a young person too.

We think her passion for good coffee shines through, as well as her drive to create a viable business that will create employment for other young people too.

You can read Anna’s Enterprise Express feature on our in the press page here.

You can find the home page for the FSB in South and East Yorkshire here.

If you would like to join the FSB you can see the membership benefits and rates here.

coffeeJouliesPicWe came across another fascinating aspect in the development of the rituals around coffee and how we drink it.

Coffee Joulies are an innovative piece of engineering, as well as an example of how young people with technical skills and drive can add new products to our long established industry.

What are Coffee Joulies?

Coffee Joulies are miniature thermodynamic heat storage devices. They cool your coffee by absorbing excess thermal energy when it is too hot. This energy is stored inside the Joulies. When your coffee reaches the right temperature, the Joulies slowly release this stored energy, keeping your coffee at the right temperature.

The Two Daves, inventors and coffee entrepreneurs from California have launched their product on Kickstarter – a web site for developing new products and finding backers. They broke their funding ceiling for Coffee Joulies in just three days.

Their product has resonance for us, based in Sheffield, as they have discovered that they can use existing cutlery making technology to bulk manufacture their product. Instead of making knives, their supplier can make their stainless steel coffee beans.

You can follow their fortunes and see them talking about Joulies on the Kickstarter web site here. There is a short film on the site that shows the manufacturing process and how they have been making the prototypes by hand – awesome.

The Coffee Joulies web site is at www.joulies.com

A great example of innovation in coffee technology. Keep your coffee at just the right temperature longer, by dropping in a couple of Joulies…