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First Bloom Fellow April Featured Roaster

First Bloom | April Featured Roasters

By | Featured Roaster

Spring is finally here, and it’s that time of year when we celebrate the new. We here at Fellow know that there’s more than one way to “bloom” when it comes to coffee, and this month we wanted to welcome some of the newest and freshest names to join the roasting game! Some of these companies have opened their doors within only the last year or two, while others have been around a while but only just started serving up their own proprietary roasts.

Come by Fellow all month and meet these spring chickens first hand!

FORGED COFFEE ROASTING COMPANY
Reno, NV | Founded in 2018 by Kyle Oels

Coffee/Origin: Guatemala San Miguel Escobar
Variety: Caturra, Bourbon, Catuai
Process: Washed
Notes: Sweet spices, citrus, crisp

“San Miguel is a beautiful small town situated at the base of the volcano Agua, approximately 4 miles (6 km) from Antigua Guatemala. In the 16th century, San Miguel was the second colonial capital of Guatemala until it was destroyed by a catastrophic mudflow from the volcano in 1541. In present times it is a typical Guatemalan town and home to many coffee farmers. Plots of coffee stretch up the slopes of the volcano, providing the perfect location for shade-grown, high altitude coffee. There are 30 members in the San Miguel cooperative. The farmers are generally smallholders, owning an average of approximately 3 acres of land. The farmers and their families cultivate, harvest, and process the coffee with care.”

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GO GET EM TIGER
Los Angeles, CA | Founded in 2013 by Charles Babinski and Kyle Glanville

Coffee/Origin: Colombia La Piramide
Variety: Caturra, Typica
Process: Washed
Notes: Cherry, green grape, apple pie

“Until 2004 all the coffees grown here were sold in humdrum lots as Huila coffee. Then in 2004, an association of the farmers (ASOCAFE) was created. They set up their own warehouses. Then started purchasing their member’s production, eliminating the middlemen. Selling their coffee directly in Popayán obtaining better prices. Caravela started working with them soon after, educating them on how to improve the quality of their coffee, training 2 cuppers from the association and setting up a cupping lab. Their coffee was also named Colombian La Piramide from Cauca Relationship Coffee, a name that comes from the many pyramid-shaped mountains that can be found in the region. Thanks to this work, the coffee from Inza is slowly becoming well known in Colombia and the world, the members of Asorcafe and their community are finally receiving the profits and recognition that they deserve.”

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HI-TOP COFFEE
Fresno, CA | Founded in 2017 by Karsyn, Spencer, and Aaron Bagato

Coffee/Origin: Kenya Nyeri Gatomboya AB
Variety: SL 28, SL 34
Process: Washed
Notes: Honeysuckle, orange zest, cranberry

“In Nyeri, near the base of Mt. Kenya, the Barichu Farmer’s Cooperative Society is comprised of 600-plus smallholder farmers, with plots so modest they’re usually measured by the number of trees on them, rather than parcel size.

Gatomboya is a Kikuyu word for “swamp,” referring to the nearby Gatomboya River — water from which is used to wash and ferment coffees at the factory before they’re dried on raised beds.The Barichu Cooperative operates a coffee shop on the grounds of the factory (a local word akin to mill), that caters to travelers on the highway. The income allows the cooperative to reduce its overhead and so increase farmer incomes. It also contributes to the education of children in the region by renting out the extra space on its premises to a primary school and a college.”

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LÜNA COFFEE
Vancouver, Canada | Founded in 2017 by Laura Perry and Nate Welland

Coffee/Origin: “Disco Marmalade” Ethiopia Hambela
Variety: Heirloom
Process: Washed
Notes: Bergamot, white grapes, jasmine

“In 1934 Ethiopia, a young woman named Muluemebet, with equal parts fierceness and confidence overcame the odds and became Africa’s first female pilot. She flew an aircraft called the Tiger Moth a number of times a week over Addis Ababa and was determined to complete her pilot training and start a career. Her efforts were almost unbelievable at a time when it was nearly impossible as a woman to get your drivers license. In a twist of fate, Italian troops invaded Ethiopia in 1936, forcing Muluemebet into hiding (she was on their hit list).

Trading in your dream for the domestic life seems a bit anti-climactic, but what happens next involves moving forward to today, this coffee and a continued legacy. Ethiopian government awarded Muluemebet land as recognition for her efforts during the war and decades later Aman Adinew, her grandson, is entrusted with this same land – Hambela Estate. The Adinew family manages Hambela Estate with the same drive that Muluemebet showed as she learned to fly all those years ago. They not only employ the local community complete with healthcare but also provide agronomy assistance for smallholders. The quality of the lots produced under the guidance of Aman and his team are consistently gorgeous and vibrant.”

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SOUL WORK COFFEE
Berkeley, CA | Founded in 2013 by Clint Davis

Coffee/Origin: Costa Rica El Diamante
Variety: Caturra, Catuai
Process: Anaerobic
Notes: Cinnamon, poached pear, caramel apple

“El Diamante is a 14-acre farm located in San Rafael de San Ramón within the province of Alajuela, Costa Rica. Carlos and his family are members of Café de Altura de San Ramón Especial S.A. (Café de Altura), an association that was founded in 2004 and currently has more than 3500 members who receive technical support to increase the quality of their coffee and productivity on their farms. El Diamante is an example of cutting edge experimentation paying off for producers. The coffee is processed using an anaerobic fermentation process, which means the depulped coffee was fermented in an airtight tank with its own honey water. Temperature, brix, pH, time, and pressure are carefully controlled to enhance the coffee’s flavors during the fermentation process. The results in the cup speak to the brilliant method.”

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The Fellow team is headed to the Specialty Coffee Expo in Boston this week. Follow along on Instagram to get the inside scoop on the World Barista Championships and World Brewers Cup!

Fellow Atmos Vacuum Canister Frequen

Your Atmos Vacuum Canister FAQs Answered

By | Coffee, Design

The coffee supply chain is long and loving. The number of people who play a role in getting your favorite coffee beans to your kitchen is truly extraordinary. We created Atmos Vacuum Canister to be the final bit of love in this chain before you brew. By simply twisting the lid back and forth, Atmos sucks air out to prevent oxidation and extends coffee’s shelf life by up to 50%. The care put into each and every bag of coffee can now last longer.

Since Atmos is a new technology, we’re sure you have a few lingering questions you need answering before bringing it home. We combed our social media comments and customer service emails to round up the most frequently asked questions:

What exactly is a “vacuum canister”? I thought my coffee bag was airtight!
First off, let’s define what a vacuum is. A vacuum is a closed system in which pressure is less than atmospheric. In order for this to happen, you need a constant amount of space (i.e. a rigid container) where air particles are removed. There’s a lot of airtight containers/bags out there that get rid of some air, but these aren’t necessarily a true vacuum. An easy way to tell if you don’t have a vacuum container is if your container shrinks (i.e. is it a bag or does it have a lid that collapses into the container). If your container shrinks, it is not a vacuum and will not decrease the pressure below atmospheric.

Uhh Fellow, Atmos is definitely not the first vacuum canister on the market. What makes Atmos “special”?
Unlike other vacuum canisters, Atmos does not have an external pump or part that attaches and detaches. The magic of Atmos is all in the lid. This makes removing air from Atmos super simple. Also, the vacuum mechanism in Atmos is so strong that it reduces internal pressure down to half an atmosphere. In fact, pressure is so important to coffee freshness that we wrote a full blog post on it.

Since Atmos is a sealed environment, will this mean there is a buildup of CO2?
Commercial coffee bean bags with CO2 degassing valves are designed to relieve CO2 pressure build-up and prevent bag rupture, not to necessarily keep coffee fresher for longer. In a vacuum chamber, the pressure is low enough that CO2 buildup is not a concern. CO2 in the air around the beans is non-reactive and will not affect the flavor of the coffee. CO2 does, however, affect your coffee’s flavor once you start brewing, so make sure to bloom your bed of grounds before brewing!

How much coffee does each Atmos hold?
Atmos is available in three sizes. The .4 L Atmos holds up to 6 oz of coffee beans, the .7 L canister holds up to 10 oz of coffee beans, and the 1.2 L canister holds up to 16 oz of coffee beans. But remember, some varietals of coffee beans are bigger than others (looking at you, Pacamara).

Can I store ground coffee in Atmos?
Nope! Powdery or ground substances do not play well with the seals and can clog the intake valve. Since we always advocate for coffee to be ground right before brewing, Atmos was never designed for the intention of storing ground coffee. In addition to ground coffee, please avoid putting any powdery substances inside Atmos such as spices (like turmeric), flours, and matcha tea.

No coffee grinds or powdery substances, got it. What else is good for storing in Atmos besides coffee beans?
The sky’s the limit. Atmos extends the shelf life of your pantry items, too. Toss in loose leaf tea, nuts, cereal, cookies, granola, candy, and other plant-based things you have in your house 😉

Can I put Atmos in the freezer?
You can freeze Atmos, but it’s not the best use of the product. Since coffee beans should be frozen in individual servings as to not refreeze and freeze beans continuously, Atmos doesn’t make the most sense. Atmos is intended to hold multiple servings, so it would be a waste of space in your freezer to put only one serving of beans inside. Also, placing Atmos in the freezer will also eventually reduce the life-span of the vacuum seal.

Why did you make a clear glass Atmos if sunlight is a big contributor to coffee freshness?
If you anticipate storing coffee in your cupboard or a shaded area, clear glass is great! You can see the contents, which is especially important if you’re storing pantry items. But if your brew station is near a window or want to put your Atmos Vacuum Canisters on display, then our matte black stainless steel makes more sense. We think both designs are beautiful, so it comes down to your preference and needs.

I have more than one Atmos. How can I label them to tell the difference?
If you have a clear glass Atmos, you can use chalk pens or whiteboard markers. Both of these options will wash or wipe off. Also, if you have the largest size, you can keep the beans in the bag and put the bag directly inside of Atmos. For the matte black stainless steel, we don’t recommend writing directly onto the body. We love using a strip of washi tape on the bottom.

And lastly, a boring but necessary question. How do I clean my Atmos?
Atmos is not dishwasher safe. When it comes to the lid, please prevent liquid from getting inside and do not clean the lid under running water. Instead, clean with a damp, non-abrasive sponge and use mild soap, if needed. For thorough cleaning, the gasket and filter can be removed and washed separately. Similarly, we recommend hand-washing the stainless steel and glass canister with a damp, non-abrasive sponge and mild soap. Using a coarse sponge, brush or other rough surfaces will scratch the finish of the lid and canister.

If your question didn’t make the list, don’t hesitate to reach out to our customer service team at hello@fellowproducts.com. We’re here to help!

Clyde Stovetop Tea Kettle by Fellow

Redesigning The Classic Whistling Tea Kettle

By | Design

Iron Japanese tea kettle meets Scandinavian design meets curling stone was the conversation that kick-started the design of our newest product. Our product team got to work by first taking everything they knew about the classic whistling kettle and tossing it out the window. We started from scratch to push the limits on what a kettle can and should be. The final product? Clyde Stovetop Tea Kettle.

To dive deeper into the design process behind our sleek update to a stovetop staple, we sat down with the product designer Julian Bagirov and Fellow’s founder Jake Miller:

What was the inspiration behind Clyde’s design?
Julian: The design process for Clyde was very deconstructive. I wanted to completely take apart all the elements of a kettle and put them back together in a simpler and more user-friendly way. With Clyde, we wanted to make a robust and large volume kettle that is easy to use and comfortable to hold, pick up, and pour. We started with a comfortable and easy to hold handle where the center of weight is at the center of the handle and the natural holding point. The overall shape of the kettle is clean simple and iconic where all the elements are clear in their purpose and function.

Jake: And to add to that, we all know that every stove in America has basically the same clunky, mundane tea kettle displayed on the burner. The whistling kettle is just one of those classic kitchenware appliances that come to mind when you think of your grandma’s or mom’s house. I knew we could build a new kettle that not only looked great in a modern kitchen but could also meet Fellow’s high-performance specs.

Clyde Stovetop Whistling Tea Kettle FellowFellow already makes two stovetop kettles. Why launch a third?
Jake: Our fans love the Fellow aesthetic but not all coffee users need a pour-over spout for their brew method of choice. For French press, AeroPress® Coffee Maker, or cuppings, the super slow and controlled pour Stagg provides is too tedious. And, a lot of people simply prefer tea over coffee. We’ve also gotten a lot of feedback from folks that want a kettle where you can serve multiple people. We refer to Clyde has a “workhorse kettle” because of its large 1.7 liter boiling capacity. Lastly, one of the biggest drawbacks with a gooseneck pour-over kettle is that given the spout design, there isn’t a whistle. Clyde is our first kettle with a whistle, and it’s no ordinary whistle.

You can’t leave us hanging. What makes Clyde’s whistle so special?
Julian: The whistle on most, if not all, stovetops kettle is an annoying pain point on the product. It informs you the water is boiling in the most extreme and stress-inducing way. With Clyde, we saw an opportunity to completely rethink how this works. We wanted to inform the user but in a calm and pleasant way. This lead us to explore how we can incorporate a musical note into the kettle. After exploring dozens of options we landed on a dual reed and ball design that lets the pressure out at the right time as the water is boiling, which in turn makes the reeds vibrant and create a pleasant sound. It is really a very magical part of Clyde.

Jake: Our engineer Drew worked for months on calibrating reed length to vibrate at frequencies that sounded like great together. He lost a lot of sleep over those reeds, but we couldn’t be happier with the final harmonizing combo. In addition, Clyde’s whistle not only sounds better than the traditional screeching banshee kettles on the market, but the mechanism to create the whistle provides a more intuitive pour as well. Most stovetop kettles are designed with a lid on the spout that needs to be opened before pouring.  You either have to grab a towel to flip open the spout lid or use your shirt because it’s so hot or shooting steam. That’s a completely unnecessary step. Our magic whistle does not require a lid which means you can pour with one hand. When you’re pouring 1.7 liters of boiling water, you probably want as much control and ease as possible. Clyde provides this!

What other problems with the classic stovetop tea kettle did you fix with Clyde?
Julian: We wanted to fix a few things about the classic kettle. A major aspect we wanted to fix was just how comfortable and balanced we can design a kettle to be. We started by making a simple and comfortable handle to grip that is well balanced and is at the center point of all weight. We also incorporated a large lid opening that is very easy to fill.

Jake: The handle was really important to us, and Julian knocked it out of the park.  A lot of big stovetop kettles do have a handle that hangs over the top of the kettle like Clyde, but there was always something that kind of left us wanting more. The handles were never robust enough or the material felt cheap. We wanted a feeling of satisfaction when holding Clyde without any strain on the wrist given the large water capacity. The final handle is really robust, but it also feels luxurious because it’s wrapped in soft-touch silicone.

Clyde by Fellow Redesigning the classicConvinced to part ways with your current tea kettle? Add Clyde to your collection!