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Corvo EKG Electric Tea Kettle

What’s The Point of A PID Controller In An Electric Kettle?

By | Coffee, Design

Minimal and modern with a single button and a sleek LCD screen, Stagg EKG and Corvo EKG’s base is hiding something very powerful inside: a PID controller. A proportional-integral-derivative controller is a control loop feedback mechanism widely used in industrial control systems. The PID controller continuously calculates an error value as the difference between a desired setpoint and a measured process variable and applies a correction based on proportional, integral, and derivative terms which give the controller its name.1  Or in much simpler terms, EKG’s PID controller is basically a mathlete with a TI-84 calculator constantly running equations to determine the most efficient way to reach your goal temperature.

“An everyday example is the cruise control on a road vehicle; where external influences such as gradients would cause speed changes, and the driver has the ability to alter the desired set speed. The PID algorithm restores the actual speed to the desired speed in the optimum way, without delay or overshoot, by controlling the power output of the vehicle’s engine.”2 Well before cruise control, the original application of PID controllers was for the automatic steering systems for ships in the early 1920s. So if you ever want to drop an impressive factoid while brewing up a pour-over, you can say your Stagg EKG or Corvo EKG has the same technology as ocean liners.

If your electric kettle has a traditional thermostat, it heats up by overshooting the goal temperature, and then it drops below the goal temperature to cool off. All kettles (that we’re aware of) have a simple on/off controller. So, the power is either at 100% or 0%. Again it overshoots, undershoots, overshoots, and undershoots until it gets close to the goal temperature. Charted on a graph, it would look like spiking zig zag lines or the stock market crashing and rebounding day after day. This is not efficient and in reality, your “hold” is just holding at a degree or two below and above, flipping back and forth.

Now onto the EKG family and the two reasons EKG outperforms everything else on the market. First, Stagg EKG and Corvo EKG use a PID controller (much like your fancy $20,000 espresso machines), so the zig zags are less drastic and resemble a curve leveling off at your goal temperature. This lends itself to a more accurate output. In addition, those other kettles just have on/off mechanical relays (remember from above, either 100% or 0% power). Fellow’s EKG line is able to do a little something called “Pulse Width Modulation” using a non-mechanical approach. PWM uses series of on/off pulses to vary the duty cycle, the fraction of time that the output voltage is “on” compared to when it is “off.” This PWM action allows us to maintain temp much more accurate compared to a standard mechanical relay that is clicking on and off around the set point. Oh, and that also means Stagg EKG doesn’t have that annoying mechanical on/off click that drives baristas crazy.

Okay okay… so what does this mean in terms of actual performance? After running countless tests, we can say with confidence that the EKG family’s PID controller heats and maintains water temperature to +/- .3 degrees Celsius. This is three to four times more accurate than the leading electric pour-over kettle available on the market today. In one series of tests, we compared Stagg EKG to the leading variable temp pour-over kettle (to be nice, we won’t name names).

The test: 600 ml of water set to hold at 200°F.

Although both kettles have an average temperature of essentially 200°F over the course of testing duration (averages can be misleading), the standard deviations tell a very different story. Stagg EKG has a standard deviation of 0.27°F while the leading pour-over kettle comes in at 1.06°F.

As you can see from the plot, Stagg EKG is bouncing between about 199.5°F and 200.5°F (blue line), while the leading pour-over kettle ranges from a low of below 198°F and a high of over 201.5°F (red line). The competitor kettle turns on (100%) overshoots the set point, then shuts off (0%). The water cools down to 198°F and then the kettle clicks back on (100%). The result is relatively drastic swings in temperature even though you’re technically in hold mold. Stagg EKG, through PID and PWM is able to do micro adjustments that make it hold temp three times more accurate in this experiment.

Stagg EKG vs. Leading Variable Temp Pour-Over KettleWhy should the inner-workings of an electric kettle matter to you? The fourth wave of coffee has been forecasted as “the science of coffee.” As we learn more about coffee, users seek more resolution on their brewing parameters as seen in many third wave shops employing techniques such as Total Dissolved Solids, brewing by weight, and using coffee brewing smart technology. Stagg EKG and Corvo EKG provide users the ability to manipulate temperatures with to-the-degree precision to easily control the brewing temperature. This empowers users to experiment and explore all the varying degrees of extraction for coffee and tea. Both Stagg EKG and now our latest product, Corvo EKG, have a brew range of 104°F to 212°F (40°C-100°), can hold the set temperature for 60 minutes, and most importantly, are the most accurate variable temperature electric kettles on the market.

Corvo EKG Electric Tea KettleStagg EKG Electric Pour-Over Kettle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coffee Processes Augustt Featured Roasters Line-Up Fellow

The Process | August Featured Roasters

By | Coffee, Featured Roaster

Like wine, spirits, and many commodities, after it is harvested coffee undergoes varying degrees of process and management before it gets roasted and ends up in our hands. In a culture where cost and convenience have risen to the top of the priority pile, it is easy to overlook this crucial component of the brew we buy.

However these days, thanks to roasteries and businesses which tend to work more directly with coffee farms, value transparency, and champion the craft of production, we now have more understanding in what’s in our cup.

This month, we are excited to highlight the exciting and dynamic world of coffee processing! From fully-washed beans (common) to beans which have been left to dry on the tree (rare), we are offering a spectrum of delicious coffees which have been processed in a variety of ways, to give us the chance to see all the things this special bean can do. We hope you enjoy this delicious and unusual line-up as much as we do!

TIM WENDELBOE | WASHED PROCESS
Oslo, Norway | Founded in 2007 by Tim Wendelboe

Tim Wendelboe Coffee Roasters Fellow Featured RoastersCoffee/Origin: Kenya Kapsokisio
Variety: K7, SL-28, SL-34
Notes: Green Apples, Cooked Fruit, Raspberries

“This coffee is grown and hand-picked by the cooperative members that are all smallholder farmers. After picking the coffee with their family members and neighbors they deliver and sell the coffee cherries to the wet mill where the good coffee cherries are separated from the inferior ones by hand sorting before the coffee gets processed. Then the cherries are de-pulped by using a 4 disc Aagard disc pulper. The parchment coffee is dry fermented for 24 to 48 hours and rinsed with clean water midway through fermentation. Then the parchment is washed and graded before it gets soaked for up to 24 hours before drying. The clean coffee is dried on African elevated drying tables, partly covered with shade nets.” – Tim Wendelboe (@timwendelboe)

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KLATCH COFFEE | WET HULLED PROCESS
Rancho Cucamonga, CA | Founded 1993 by Mike and Cindy Perry
Klatch Coffee Roasters Fellow Featured RoasterCoffee/Origin: Sumatra Mutu Batak
Variety: Ateng, Jember, Garundang
Notes: Cacao, Cedar, Bell Peppers

“The Sumatra Lintong Mutu Batak comes from selected producers surrounding the town of Lintongnihuta in the Provinsi Sumatera Utara (Northern Sumatra Province). This specific area is located on the southern shores of Lake Toba, which is the largest volcanic lake in the world. The soil around the southern part of the lake is volcanic which leads to exceptional terrain for growing coffee. The town of Lintong Nihuta sits on a plateau that ranges from 1000 meters with a few farms to around 1300 meters.

The producers of this coffee are small farmers who have been recognized by our staff to produce exceptional raw material. These selected farmers run small two to four-hectare plantations with each hectare consists of approximately 1,000 coffee trees. The farmer grows, harvests, and de-pulps the coffee on the farm. After de-pulping he stores the coffee overnight, allowing it to ferment and washes the following day. After washing the farmer will briefly dry the coffee to remove the moisture from the exterior of the parchment and delivers the coffee to the production facility.

After the coffee is dried to 12 to 13% moisture content in the greenhouses, the coffee will be delivered to the warehouse in Medan. It is inspected and graded again upon arrival to ensure no errors were made during processing. The coffee is then warehoused for 2 months. Then it goes through the final grading, hand sorted, bagged and ready for export. This coffee scored an impressive 94 points from Coffee Review.” – Klatch Coffee (@klatchroasting)

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LITTLE AMPS COFFEE ROASTERS | RED HONEY PROCESS
Harrisburg, PA | Founded 2011 by Aaron Carlson

Little Amps Coffee Roasters Fellow Featured RoastersCoffee/Origin: Costa Rica Finca El Chilemate
Variety: Bourbon
Notes: Chocolate, Grapefruit, Lemongrass

“Las Lajas began producing honey coffees in 2008 by necessity, after an earthquake temporarily cut off their access to water.  The Chacons knew of natural processing techniques used in other countries and figured it was worth a shot to try in Costa Rica to avoid losing a bulk of their farm’s harvest.

Aside from being leaders in their field, the Chacons are very environmentally minded and are one of the only certified-organic mills in their area.  Their preference to honey processing also enables them to cut back on water usage while processing coffees, as they don’t have to soak the beans as long as a fully washed coffee would require.” – Little Amps Coffee Roasters (@littleampscoffee)

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CHROMATIC COFFEE CO. | TREE DRIED PROCESS
San Jose, CA | Founded 2012 by Hiver von Geenhoven, Wendy Warren, and James Warren

Chromatic Coffee Roasters Fellow Featured RoastersCoffee/Origin: Brazil Boia
Variety: Bourbon
Notes: Fresh Fruit, Nougat, Chocolate

“We have been so happy working with Ronaldo, Natalia, her Father, Jose Maria and the lovely folks of the Santa Luzia Farm. In this wild dried-on-the-tree lot, we are greeted with very fresh fruit, followed by sweet flavors of toffee-nougat, and a lovely chocolate note that rounds out really nicely with dried fruit qualities in the finish.” – Chromatic Coffee Co. (@chromaticcoffee)

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BLACK & WHITE COFFEE ROASTERS | NATURAL PROCESS
Wake Forest, NC | Founded 2017 by Kyle Rampage and Lem ButlerBlack and White Coffee Roasters Fellow Featured RoastersCoffee/Origin: Burundi Mutana Lot 39
Variety: Bourbon
Notes: Strawberry, Tropical, Passionfruit

“The Long Miles Coffee Project started in 2013, when Ben and Kristy built their first washing station, called Bukeye, at the base of Gaharo hill and is home to 921 plantations and 104,747 trees. This station processes coffee from four “hills” in the area: Gaharo, Ninga, Munuinya and Rugoma, keeping each unique lot separated. It also washes coffee from other surrounding hills including the Mutana Hill area. We are excited to offer Lot 39 from Long Miles Coffee Project, featuring their natural process. Mutana Hill has rich sweetness of tropical fruits balanced with light acidity and silky body.” – Black & White Coffee Roasters (@blackwhiteroasters)

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What’s your favorite process? Stop by the Playground all month long to brew up one of each and quiz our Fellow Brew Guides on the different processing methods!

Fellow Prismo Affogato Recipe How-To

Prismo “Affauxgato” Recipe

By | Coffee

An affogato is the perfect summer pick-me-up or a delicious way to impress dinner party guests with minimal effort. Usually, a traditional affogato takes the form of a scoop of vanilla gelato or ice cream drowned in a hot shot of espresso. But if you’re not the proud owner of an expensive espresso machine, how are you going to pick yourself up in the summer or make a fancy dessert for your great aunt?

Have no fear. Prismo is here! Swooping in with another one of his superpowers to save the day, our mighty AeroPress® Coffee Maker attachment is an affogato-making superstar. Well, we like to call it an “affauxgato” since Prismo technically makes espresso-style shots.

Our sales manager Jake Mix invented this recipe one afternoon in the Playground, and the team has been hooked ever since. Classic vanilla ice cream is the go-to, but our dairy-free Fellows used Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy Chunky Monkey from the corner store and the results were off the charts.

But enough chit-chat, time to check out the how-to for Jake’s famous Prismo “Affauxgato” recipe!

WHAT YOU’LL NEED:
Prismo
AeroPress® Coffee Maker
Vanilla ice cream or gelato
20 grams of finely ground coffee
50 grams of 212°F water

STEP-BY-STEP RECIPE:

1. Dose out 20 grams of whole bean coffee. If you happen to own a Stagg Pour-Over Dripper, you can also load the beans to the “single dot” measurement inside of its ratio aid instead. No scale required!
Fellow Prismo Affogato Recipe How-To
2. Heat water in your pour-over kettle to 212°F and grind beans on a very fine setting. We did ours at 1.5 on the EK43.

Fellow Prismo Affogato Recipe How-To3. Twist Prismo onto the bottom of your AeroPress® Coffee Maker and dump in the grinds.
Fellow Prismo Affogato Recipe How-To

4. Add 50 grams of the 212°F water into your AeroPress® Coffee Maker and stir vigorously for 15 seconds. Let sit for one minute.
Fellow Prismo Affogato Recipe How-To5. During the one minute brew time, add one heaping scoop of vanilla ice cream to your cup or mug.

Fellow Prismo Affogato Recipe How-To7. After one minute of brew time, plunge the AeroPress® Coffee Maker over the ice cream.
Fellow Prismo Affogato Recipe How-To8. And enjoy!
Fellow Prismo Affogato Recipe How-To

Do you have any go-to Prismo recipes? Send us a message via Instagram or Twitter. We love seeing your Prismo creations!

Wade Preston’s Winning US Brewers Cup Qualifier Prismo Recipe

By | Coffee

Wade Preston of Prevail Coffee Roasters walked away with the first place prize at this year’s New Orleans Brewers Cup Qualifier. He went on to compete at the 2018 US Brewers Cup Championships in April. Here’s the kicker…he used Prismo as his coffee brewing apparatus of choice. This is the first time Prismo has been used in competition, and we couldn’t be more excited that our little AeroPress® Coffee Maker attachment is making waves on a national stage.

Wade Preston Coffee Champs Prismo RecipeWade shared his winning Prismo recipe with the Fellow team a few weeks ago, and we’ve tested it out in the Playground many times since. What’s our verdict? Yeah, it’s really stinking good!

Give it a try for yourself and let us know what you think!

WADE’S PRISMO RECIPE

  1. Place an AeroPress® Coffee Maker paper filter on top of the Prismo metal filter.
    Grind 18 grams of coffee very coarse. Bottoming out an EK grinder with stock burr spacing is probably about right.
  2. Sift grinds with a 600 micron screen like the Kruve.
  3. Load your grinds into the AeroPress® Coffee Maker.
  4. Pour a 50 gram pre-infusion with 145°F water. (Yes, you read that right!)
  5. Stir gently to ensure all grinds are saturated.
  6. Let pre-infusion immerse for 3 minutes. (Yep, three minutes as in 180 seconds!)
  7. Fill to 205 grams with 208°F water.
  8. Stir 5 revolutions with AeroPress® Coffee Maker paddle.
  9. Let immerse for 2 minutes and 30 seconds.
  10. Stir 5 revolutions and plunge, steadily for 30 seconds until you hear the vacuum seal break.

It will create a cup that will need to “settle.” If you taste it right away, it’ll be good, but the body won’t be there. After it has set for about 1-2 minutes, the body will ramp up. At about 130°F, it is a huge, creamy, and almost chewy. The cup will also be crazy sweet.

Wade Preston Brewers Cup Prismo Recipe

WADE’S THEORY
At the particle level of coffee extraction there are two types of solubles: surface solubles and inner cell solubles.  Surface solubles extract very easily. They also give coffee its sweetness. Think of how sweet and syrupy cold brew is…that’s because it is pretty much 100% surface erosion extraction. Heat and turbulence are required for inner cell extraction which creates coffee’s complexity (bitterness, acidity, etc). The idea with the above recipe is that you can isolate the surface erosion extraction by doing the low temp pre-infusion. This will delicately extract the surface solubles. Then, you can safely extract the inner cell solubles without fear of over-extracting the surface solubles. That’s the gist of it anyways!

Follow Wade on Instagram for more great coffee content: @wadepreston


Prismo is a pressure actuated valve designed to be used with the AeroPress® Coffee Maker. This attachment allows for a buildup of pressure to create espresso-style coffee and creates a no-drip seal for a full immersion brew. The reusable 70-micron etched filter stops sludge in its tracks and eliminates the need for paper filters.  The valve’s small aperture also fits directly over an espresso shot glass.

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Bon Voyage | May Featured Roasters

By | Coffee, Featured Roaster

We all feel it. The days are getting longer, sleeves are getting shorter, and before we know it, dreams of summer travels have begun to materialize in our minds…

Hey, we’re right there with you! And to satiate our wanderlust we at Fellow have deemed May’s store theme: Bon Voyage! All this month you can visit us and enjoy a selection of coffees from roasters located in some of our favorite summer travel destinations. Come in and get swept away with brews from:

Buna Coffee Roasters in Mexico City, Mexico

Parlor Coffee Roasters in Brooklyn, New York

Onibus Coffee in Tokyo, Japan

L’Alchimiste in Bordeaux, France

Proud Mary Coffee Roasters in Melbourne, Australia (and also recently in Portland, Oregon!)

Can’t make it into the store? Tune into our Instagram feed to get in on some great opportunities to flex your jetsetter muscles and maybe even win some Fellow gear.

Safe travels, fellow coffee lovers!

Bon Voyage Fellow Featured RoastersBUNA
Mexico City, Mexico | Founded in 2012

Flight Time: 4 hours and 15 minutes from Fellow
Fun Fact: Buna 42 (Buna’s Mexico City cafe) has the only Mod Bar espresso machine in Mexico!

Buna Cafe Rico Fellow Featured Roaster
Coffee/Origin: Oaxaca Alebrije
Variety: Typica, Bourbon
Process: Washed
Notes: Grapenuts, Orange Oil, Vanilla

“An open sky awaits us after a few hours going through a cloudy forest… Nuyuku is where Cecilio’s lot is. He named his lot “At the foot of the mountain” in mixteco. Cecilio and Ines, who are proud to be from the Misty Mountains region, produce coffee of exceptional quality. Year after year we work together to apply more sustainability in the production of coffee and to create resilient crops.We have made achievements in coffee processing and drying, in soil nutrition and implemented organic fertilization. Cecilio is also producing corn right next to a garden that we planted two years ago, another step towards producing self-sustaining crops.” – Buna (@bunamx)

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PARLOR COFFEE ROASTERS
Brooklyn, New York | Founded 2012 Dillon Edwards

Flight Time: 5 hours and 15 minutes from Fellow
Fun Fact: Parlor began as a tiny pop-up in the back of a Williamsburg barber shop!

Parlor Coffee Roasters Fellow Featured Roaster
Coffee/Origin: Kenya Gaturiri
Variety: SL-28, SL-34
Process: Washed
Notes: Plum, Citrus, Caramelized Sugar

“Plum, citrus and caramelized sugar drive the unique flavor we love from Gaturiri. Coffee has been cultivated in the Nyeri district since 1958. Today, as many as 1200 farmers contribute their ripe coffee cherry to the Gaturiri Factory for processing. Part of the Barichu Cooperative Society in Central Kenya, the society has four washing stations: Karatina, Gatomboya, Karindundu and Gaturiri. Mary, the cooperative’s full-time agronomist, uses a designated block of 1,500 plants for group training sessions with participating farmers. ” – Parlor Coffee Roasters (@parlorcoffee)

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ONIBUS COFFEE
Tokyo, Japan | Founded 2012 Atsushi Sakao

Flight Time: 9 hours and 15 minutes from Fellow
Fun Fact: Sakao dominates the Tokyo coffee scene, operating four beautiful cafes. “Onibus” is actually Portuguese for “Public Bus.” which is to say it is for everyone.

Onibus Coffee Fellow Featured Roaster

Coffee/Origin: Rwanda Nyamagabe
Variety: Bourbon
Process: Washed
Notes: Orange, Plum Acidity, Rich Vanilla

“Nyarusiza Washing Station, which is run by Buf Coffee, produces high-quality coffee. It also works on improving treatment of workers and donates its income to medical, educational, and social infrastructure.” – Onibus Coffee (@onibuscoffee)

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L’ALCHIMISTE
Bordeaux, France |Founded 2014 by Arthur Audibert

Flight Time: 13 hours and 25 minutes from Fellow
Fun Fact: L’Alchimiste began as a roastery only, but opened the doors to its first cafe/ boutique shortly after. They also use Fellow’s Stagg kettles!

L'Alchimiste Fellow Featured Roaster

Coffee/Origin: Ethiopia Marabou
Variety: Moka
Process: Washed
Notes: Fruity, Grapefruit, Caramel

“Located in southern Ethiopia, the highlands of the Sidamo region are home to the plots of this Ethiopian crop grown under permanent, protective shade. The volcanic lands of the African rift give it its special character. Lively and fruity, this coffee has a beautiful freshness and an exceptional aromatic persistence!” – L’Alchimiste (@lachimiste_torrefacteur)

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PROUD MARY COFFEE ROASTERS
Melbourne, Australia | Founded 2009 by Nolan Hirte

Flight Time: 17 hours and 50 minutes from Fellow
Fun Fact: Proud Mary’s cafes offer bar-style coffee service which includes espresso flights, beautiful food, and a unique one-on-one barista/ guest experience!

Proud Mary Coffee Roasters Fellow Featured Roaster

Coffee/Origin: Brazil Sítio Sertãozinho
Variety: Yellow Catuai
Process: Natural
Notes: Goji Berry, Blueberry, Creamy

“Sitio Sertãozinho is managed by Paulo Ribeiro Rocha, his daughters and sons-in-law. Working with specialty coffee has given his family a better life! The farm is located near the city Cristina, in the south of Minas Gerais, in Serra da Mantiqueira region. With mountainous topography, and has a differentiated climate and soils favorable for producing specialty coffee.This farm was acquired with an inheritance from Rocha’s parents, and he began coffee cultivation 40 years ago – from the start he focused on quality coffee. He is dedicated to growing coffee sustainably, preserving the environment and are members of the ASCARIVE Fair Trade Association. Rocho and his family are passionate about preserving springs and native forests on the farm, which shelter large plant species and native animals.” – Proud Mary Coffee Roasters (@proudmarycoffee)

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Bon Voyage Fellow Featured Roasters

Fellow Team Booth at the Specialty Coffee Expo 2018

Specialty Coffee Expo 2018 Recap

By | Coffee

Our favorite week of the year has come and gone, and all we’re left with is sweet, sweet memories and caffeine withdrawal after consuming 20 cups a day for three days straight. The Specialty Coffee Expo, or SCA for short, was held in Seattle again this year and the entire Fellow squad made the trip. Our highlights outside of the convention hall include a team banana relay race around a high school track, an insane dinner spread cooked by our friends from Fellow Taiwan, and hula hoops mixed with inflatable unicorns at the La Marzocco party.

Our highlights inside the convention hall could be a never-ending list, but we managed to narrow it down to our three favorites! Read More

Brew Like A Champion with Stagg EKG and EKG+

By | Coffee

Want to brew like the best of them? Break out your pour-over gear and follow along as Dylan Siemens of Onyx Coffee Lab and the 2017 US Brewers Cup Champion, walks you step-by-step through his techniques and pour-over recipe for one.

Stagg EKG and Stagg [X] Pour-Over Dripper get the star treatment in our latest video!

Dylan’s Featured Recipe
22g of coffee to 350g of water | 200°F water | Medium grind
@0:00 – 50g bloom
@0:30 – Pour to 200g
@1:20 – Pour to 350g
Drain by 2:45

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