(Incidentally, I made a video Thursday night of me roasting up the coffees for the cupping on Saturday, but YouTube didn't like how big the file was and I haven't had time to play around with editing or condensing it. If I post it now, it will be like a bit of time travel, but perhaps I shall do it anyway...)
Saturday was quite a lovely cupping at Beer Table in Park Slope. We had about 25 people in there on a positively sweltering Saturday late morning. Jenny from Beer Table was kind enough to open up the joint early for this. I led the group in a cupping of three great coffees, old friends of mine: Lensamo Lamisso (ETH), SMS Korate (ETH) and Los Naranjos (SAL).
I would say that about two thirds of the people were newcomers. That makes me really happy! Rachel Graville, who set this whole encounter up between the Coffee Society and Beer Table, brought homemade scones and candied ginger cake (bomb).
And Koji gave a great demonstration of a Japanese-style pour-over drip method of brewing coffee, with an assist from his wife Saiko and friend Maki. It's a lot like a Melitta-style pour-over set up, but the shape of the cone and the filter is different, as is the filter material (a less-offensive tasting paper). Koji, who sells this equipment in Japan, had a very formal way of cooling the water slightly and pouring in a very controlled manner. The result was a very smooth, clear cup of coffee. Even the dark roast coffee that I brought him (at his request) came out quite lovely. Very impressive.
After cupping our big group split up into the beer group at Beer Table and the brunch group at Little D across the street (where Rachel works). Since moving a couple of blocks three weeks ago, I am rediscovering how great this little section of Park Slope is.
Yesterday evening I went for a run in the park as the sun was going down. It was hot as hell and I was soon drenched in sweat, but there was a nice little breeze. Fireflies were lighting up all over the place in the cool greenery beneath the oak trees. Taking it easy on the last half-mile back to my apartment, I ran past the bandshell where they have concerts all summer. I had planned to just go home and call it a night, but something made me stop.
They were showing Enter the Dragon on a gigantic screen, with live music by the electric-tabla fusion musician Karsh Kale. You can watch those videos one after another, but I can't really explain to you how cool it was combined, especially during the extended fight scenes between Bruce Lee's sister and Oharra, and between Williams and Han, and the sections where Bruce Lee is sneaking around the palace. I stood there and made some cool new friends (Hi Jackie! Hi Kate!) and we all just watched the show in the warm, breezy twilight, fireflies twinkling all the while, all of us lighting up every time the Little Dragon flew through the air.
It was the kind of day and evening that makes you happy to be alive, happy for the people around you who make life so interesting, who are so interesting themselves, and happy to be able to experience all the wonderful things that humans (Lensamo Lamisso with his gorgeous, sweet coffee; Bruce Lee with his martial arts, his intensity and his oddly angelic presence) can do, and grateful for this imperfect (way too hot and humid yesterday!) and yet infinitely lovely (fireflies!) world.