Eat Real Festival 2013 – Coffee

bennett does the blue bottle roastery tour

The organizers of this year’s Eat Real Festival decided to group all of the coffee folks together into a “Coffee Pavilion”, which included Blue Bottle Coffee, Ritual Coffee Roasters, The Bicycle Coffee Company, Bloom (a new coffee delivery service), Barefoot Coffee Roasters, Roast Co, and Mr. Espresso.  Sweet Maria’s also joined in with some home roasting demonstrations.  All of the good stuff in one place – Jack London Square, Oakland, California.


Blue Bottle was offering tours of their roastery, which is only 2 blocks away from Jack London Square.  After going over the history of the company, Bennett served samples of their 3 Africans blend to the audience, brewed in a Chemex:

bennett does the blue bottle roastery tour

Bennett described how coffee cherries are processed and showed a few examples of beans that had been wet and dry-processed.bennett does the blue bottle roastery tour

bennett does the blue bottle roastery tour

The tour continued with a description of the roasting process (2 giant Probat roasters in this case) and then a visit to the barista training lab, where Bennett described the training process and explained some of the training equipment.


Back at the festival, Chris from Ritual Coffee Roasters gave an Aeropress demonstration in the coffee pavilion, which had been decorated with coffee-themed posters by Bloom.

coffee posters by bloom ready

Chris showed off his favorite Aeropress recipe.  16 grams of beans (I believe he was using their El Angel from Costa Rica):chris does a ritual roasters aeropress demo

with a grind somewhere between a drip and espresso.  He put 2 paper filters in the Aeropress for more back-pressure and then poured water that had been off of a boil for a few minutes.chris does a ritual roasters aeropress demoHe sealed the Aeropress by just barely putting the plunger in, then let it rest for 60 seconds.  After 60 seconds, he agitated the bloom with a spoon, and then waited another 60 seconds (I think?) before finally plunging: chris does a ritual roasters aeropress demoIt was a great cup.  Fairly fruit-forward with sweet tart notes that got stronger as the coffee cooled.


Ritual’s Sputnik is usually a fixture at the festival, but they were not allowed to bring the trailer to this year’s festival due to some Alameda County restrictions.  But the baristas were cool with it:

ritual roasters

I wanted to have some of Bicycle Coffee’s nitro brew and something from Barefoot, but I was already too wound up on caffeine to have any more..

barefoot coffee

Eat Real Fest 2011 Part 6 – Vendors and other photos

This is Part 6 of a series of photo posts from Oakland’s Eat Real Festival, September 23-25, 2011 at Jack London Square.  (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5).  These photos are various ones that I took while walking around the festival on Saturday, the 24th.


Ebbett’s Good to Go – Order and pick-up windows and a t-shirt.





Condiments from Belcampo





Belcampo served a koreatown kimchi hot dog and beef tallow fries.





Here’s an overhead view of the marketplace and the DIY Make It stage.





Fried fish taco from The Taco Guys – “Taco de Maui – batter-fried sustainable ono (wahoo), shredded gem lettuce, pickled radishes, sriracha mayo and cilantro”





Lamb (!!) taco from The Taco Guys – “braised red hill farms leg of lamb, grilled jalapenos, burmese spices, pickled cucumbers with sesame, thai basil, local sheep’s yogurt sauce”





the ever photogenic ritual roasters trailer, sputnik


a la marzocco and a demitasse









a cafe mocha with a heart-shaped rosetta from ritual.





jack london square at dusk.  It was still fairly crowded despite the fact that the festival was closing down for the evening.





Jim ‘n Nick’s truck always has something clever on its rear





Jim ‘n Nick’s: meat in the oven





Big Cat & The Hipnotics were playing the blues.






list of bay area coffee shops – with a bay area coffee map

here’s my subjective ranking of the best espresso/coffee in the san francisco bay area, complete with a google map.

[googlemap width=”640″ height=”480″ src=”,-122.306671&spn=0.2689835,0.371824&z=11&output=embed”]

key: more crema = better.  empty cup =  not so good.  Sorry about the funky anti-aliasing.



not bad:

drinkable but not pleasant:

  • farley’s (san francisco/oakland/emervyille, farley’s blend from sunshine? in san leandro)  Recently had a not good one from the 65th st emeryville location.  doh.
  • peerless (oakland, peerless)
  • woody’s cafe (oakland, ?)
  • crepevine (oakland/berkeley, ?)
  • riva (berkeley, ?)
  • starbucks (starbucks)
  • peets (peets)
  • uncommon grounds cafe (berkeley, uncommon grounds)

not drinkable:

  • none yet.  Maybe I have a high tolerance?

credit for working the google maps/wordpress hack: if you want to try this, don’t forget to add the &embed at the end of your link.

ritual coffee at maker faire 2010

here’s the coffee counter from the  ritual trailer (‘sputnik’) at this year’s maker faire:

ritual trailer counter at maker faire, may 2010

here it was last year at the eat real festival in oakland:

ritual truck counter at eat real festival, august 2009

we got a flight of espresso.  $7 got you a shot of each of these costa rican coffees:

  • five candles seasonal blend
  • el alto, grace calderon jimenez
  • los chachones, arturo chacon

    the five candles was my favorite.  I’m not big on tasting notes, but it tasted buttery.

    I wasn’t very diligent with the pictures, so I present here 2/3 of a flight:

    ritual coffee espresso flight at maker faire: five candles seasonal blend
    ritual coffee espresso flight at maker faire: el alto, grace calderon jimenez single origin shot

    and of course the bike cart (photos here as well) was there:

    ritual coffee at maker faire: the ritual bike cart

    from the archives: ritual bike cart

    a friend sent me this new york times post about kickstand, who have a mobile, bike-transported iced coffee and single-serve drip setup.

    I’ve only seen the ritual bike in the bay area:

    Ritual coffee bike cart

    This guy was selling iced coffee at sunday streets in the mission last july.

    ritual coffee bike cart at eat real in oakland

    and these two were selling ritual coffee at oakland’s wonderful eat real festival last august.