October 2, 2007

coffee fix

I am in love. I am in love with Blue Bottle Coffee. They've been building quite a following here in the Bay Area as microroasters of organic and shade grown coffee. They are not super-easy to find, so when I do see them I often treat myself to a cup. I like their individually prepared drip coffee (they drip it fresh, when ordered, one cup at a time).

I like that they are a small, local company. They have a pretty cool environmental policy, but what I was really impressed with is the bags they use to sell their beans in. They are lined with a 100% compostable corn-based product. Most bags of beans are not recyclable or compostable. Blue Bottle does explain on their website that the reason being that their bags will not provide as long shelf life for coffee, but Blue Bottle customers don't typically keep the beans around long enough for spoilage.

Oh, and I also found their brewing instructions funny (though it isn't really a "green" feature). For example, when grinding for a french press, "the grind should be gritty, resembling beach sand: pleasant to walk on, but not too powdery. More Santa Cruz than Carmel."

Now that I've admitted to my occasional, spontaneous purchase of coffee-to-go, I'll tell you one more thing that I started doing recently. If I find myself with a paper coffee cup and plastic top, I recycle the top and compost the paper. Wouldn't it be awesome if Starbucks could provide recycling and composting bins for all their stores? They have so many stores around the world—just imagine how much waste could be diverted from the landfill! And if I am buying beans at my other favorite coffee shop, I try to reuse the bean bag as many times as I can before retiring it.

And let's not make comments about how drinking coffee at all is probably not the greenest habit. When there is coffee to be had that is this good, my love for it will win.


dawn224 said...

You are totally right about Starbucks - I feel guilty every. single. time. I go in there. Then I buy the big coffee so I can have coffee over two or three days ....

Gift of Green said...

Oooo, I'm jealous! I wonder how they'd market the grind here on the East Coast...more...Bar Harbor than Outer Banks? :0