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Coffee largest antioxidant source

August 29, 2005

A report on yet another study showing health benefits from coffee…

Coffee – caffeinated and decaffeinated – emerged as easily the biggest source of antioxidants, taking account of the amount per serving and level of consumption. Black tea came second, followed by bananas.

“Americans get more of their antioxidants from coffee than any other dietary source – nothing else comes close,” said study leader Professor Joe Vinson, from Scranton University in Pennsylvania. He was presenting his findings at the American Chemical Society’s annual meeting in Washington DC.

The findings in the US probably reflect a similar trend in the UK, where people drink about 70 million cups of coffee each day. Antioxidants help to rid the body of harmful free radicals, destructive molecules that damage cells and DNA. They have been linked to health benefits, including protection against heart disease and cancer.

Via The Green Coffee Cooperative forum.

Verizon FiOS – and Other Fairy Tales

August 22, 2005

So, a little over a month has gone by since one of the Verizon FiOS Pre-Sales reps sold me the Brooklyn Bridge signed me up for FiOS service, and a week has gone by since the latest date I was supposed to hear from the installer by (8/15).

Now to paraphrase Penn & Teller, this isn’t my first time to a goat f**k, (I was a Verizon / GTE customer for a couple of decades), so I poured myself a big cup of coffee and settled in for a little quality phone time with the good folks at Verizon customer service.
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Single Origins, Melanges & Espresso Blends

August 22, 2005

For me, one of the true joys of home roasting is exploring the vast array of flavors available in different origins of coffees. Each area (and even each farm, and each year) has its own predominant and subtle flavors and aromas.

Most of the flavors of an origin are easiest to find in medium roasts — from a light “City” roast (just at “first crack” when the steam flashes out of the bean, and it goes from a yellow or tan to a brown) to slightly above “Full City” (a darker roast, just into “second crack”, and before the bean starts to get noticably oily).

At each level of roast, different flavors predominate — berries, citrus, floral notes, earthiness, chocolate, caramel, nuts… Some of these are present right away, some take 24 – 72 hours after the roast to develop.
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Gaggia Syncrony Compact Super-Automatic Espresso Maker Review

August 21, 2005

Gaggia Syncrony CompactAlong with all of the thrashing about the last week or two getting a working coffee maker and backup into place, I also went nuts and bought a super automatic espresso machine.

If you’re not up on espresso maker terminology, a “Super Automatic” is a machine delivers a shot of espresso (or a double, or an americano (espresso+hot water — coffee, more or less)) at the touch of a button. It grinds the beans, makes the shot, dumps the grinds, etc. Of course, it also comes with a steam wand for frothing the milk.

In the online world of coffee snobbery (such as CoffeeGeek, one of my favorite coffee-related sites), there is a special place in home barista hell for those who buy super automatics.
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Zojirushi EC-BD15 Fresh Brew Coffee Maker Review

August 21, 2005

Zojirushi Fresh BrewI finally ended up with a decent “backup” to my Starbucks Barista Aroma drip brewer – the Zojirushi EC-BD15 Fresh Brew.

I’ve been a fan of Zojirushi for awhile now — they make the rice maker for cooking sushi rice (or other kind of rice). Given that their other big product lines are some very fine thermal carafes and hot-water dispensers, it’s not a real surprise that they make an excellent thermal carafe coffee maker as well.

Unlike their fuzzy-logic rice makers (which are smarter than many of the computers I’ve ever owned), the Fresh Brew is about as basic as a coffee maker gets — the only piece of programmability on the thing is a timed brew feature, and since that’s more than I’ll ever use, I don’t mind the lack of other electronic bells and whistles that cost more and could fail.

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Hunter Thompson departs with a bang

August 21, 2005

Doc Thompson got his final wish last night, his ashes blown into the night from atop a giant 15 story gonzo fist sculpture at the Owl Farm.

With a deafening boom, the ashes of Hunter S. Thompson were blown into the sky amid fireworks late Saturday as relatives and a star-studded crowd bid an irreverent farewell to the founder of “gonzo journalism.”

Like most everything in his life, he dealt with death on his own terms.

Mahalo, Doc.

Drink your coffee — it’s GOOD for you!

August 21, 2005

I occasionally get grief from well-meaning friends as to how drinking coffee is supposed to be bad for you. Maybe this is a leftover from childhood warnings (my parents always told me that coffee would “stunt my growth” — it didn’t then, and doesn’t seem to yet, more’s the pity), or from the “caffeine is bad for you” meme that seems to be coming from the people selling decaf…

In any event, much like green tea, and then tea in general before it, coffee now seems to be getting some respect from the medical community as actually being good for you…

Here are just a few random cites from the news recently…
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Tivo Download Pics

August 11, 2005

Engadget has up “exclusive pics of TiVo Download “.

Apparently they’re doing a trial of 60 minutes of previews of IFC’s new fall lineup.

The bad news — IFC previews is a long ways from downloading new releases from Netflix.

The good news — Hey! Greg the Bunny is back on IFC this fall!

Cuisinart DCC-1200 Brew Central Coffee Maker Review

August 8, 2005

Scouting around online, I ran into a fair number of coffee fans saying nice stuff about the Cuisinart DCC-1200 Brew Central coffee maker.

I purchased one yesterday, and can’t for the life of me figure out why anybody likes this piece of junk.
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Sending for backup

August 8, 2005

With the Barista Aroma on injured reserve, it’s a critical issue to get a backup brewer in here stat — it’s not like I’m going to get much work done this week without coffee…

At least it will give me the opportunity to do a new review or two…

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