Latest from First Pour
2nd April 2014
Australia’s most advanced roastery
- Industry announcement, Australian specialty coffee -
Melbourne, Australia, March 2014 – Veneziano Coffee Roasters’ new premises in River Street, Richmond (VIC), will be the home of Australia’s first fully integrated and fully featured Diedrich roasting system.
Eagerly anticipating the arrival of the new Diedrich roast equipment, the first turnkey system in Australia, Veneziano managing Director Craig Dickson describes plans for the new and improved roastery as “the biggest and most comprehensive Diedrich roasting facility in Australia to date”.
“The Diedrich roasting technology will enable us to get the absolute best out of our coffee, right down to the cup, which is paramount when you consider we are working with some of the more rare and expensive specialty beans available”, he says.
Veneziano’s new equipment consists of:
- CR-140, a 140kg roaster also known as a “two bag” roaster referring to the volume of two full bags of green beans, with purpose-built functionality for complete control over the roasting process, and
- IR-5, a 5kg roaster known as Diedrich’s in-store roaster, ideal for controllable craft and small batch roasts
Some of a seemingly inexhaustible list of features of Veneziano’s new roasting system are:
- Industry leading automation system for recording roast information, minute by minute monitoring and roast profile analysis, also with the ability to roast in manual mode
- Commercial loader, eliminates the manual handling process of getting beans from the hopper to the drum and saves time between roast batches
- Post-roast cooling bin cyclone
- De-stoner, removes foreign matter from the coffee after it’s roasted and moves the coffee to a storage silo
- Green option, catalytic oxidiser or afterburner; fuel efficient and environmentally friendly as it controls the emissions produced by roasting, eliminating smoke, odour and various other natural bi-products resulting from the roasting process
- Heat exchanger, converts fresh air into hot air to supplement the blue flame (this prevents scorching small batches), reducing gas emissions and allowing greater control over roasting temperatures
- Bag dump station
- Dust filtration at loading (handling green beans can generate dust)
- Blend mixer, a drum for blending varietals with minimal bean breakage
- Silos, for storage and degassing
The new roastery is scheduled for installation at River Street in September, 2014.
About Diedrich - Diedrich Manufacturing is the only US manufacturer of roasting equipment. Started up by the Diedrich family in a tradition steeped in coffee heritage spanning three generations, including a coffee farm in Guatemala, manufacturing commenced in the early ‘80s. Stephan Diedrich together with his wife grew the business over two decades, from building coffee roasting machines in the family garage to manufacturing high end roast equipment for global customers. Stephan continues to strive for innovations in roasting technology today.
In-store Diedrich roaster
Diedrich is responsible for proprietary roasting technology deploying ceramic infrared burners and heat exchangers. This method utilises heated air instead of solely a blue flame burner, resulting in great reductions of the unclean gas emissions that occur during roasting, and giving roasters absolute control over the roasting process. Hence, the Diedrich machines are renowned for superior roasting providing a cleaner cup of coffee. The equipment is built with the best quality materials to ensure longevity with the ability to handle continuous production, and is finished in an attractive retro-industrial design.
Diedrich refer to the commercial roasters as: “small batch precision at industrial scale”.
24th March 2014
Pat our roaster inspecting coffee trees
Friendships and coffee are by no means mutually exclusive; Sethuraman Estates, India and Veneziano Coffee Roasters, Melbourne, Australia are a great example of this. What’s developed into a longterm coffee partnership between grower and roaster has also developed into a real friendship.
In a tradition started by Veneziano’s managing director Craig Dickson, roaster Pat Connolly continues the annual pilgrimage of visiting Veneziano’s Indian coffee partner in the Chikmagalur district of Karnataka, India. The visits are always open to other members of Veneziano’s team and key customers, giving them the unique chance to tour the working estate, dry mill, coffee museum and nearby Arabica estates. It also fosters a true appreciation for the time, effort, analysis and dedication the growers apply to the yearly harvests.
Our dear friend and coffee producer, Nishant Gurjer Sethuraman Estates, India
The role of Sethuraman Estates & Robusta
Sethuraman Estates is owned and managed by Mr Nishant Gurjer and is the home of the finest Robusta coffees in the world. To date it’s the only estate in the world to have received an “R” certification for three different coffees. R certification is an honour bestowed by the Coffee Quality Institute to recognise the worlds finest robusta lots. Veneziano is fortunate enough to be the sole Australian specialty roaster to source this fine Robusta to date, indicative of the mutual bond that exists between the two.
This year Pat returned to Sethuraman Estates and was able to time his third visit to participate in the 2014 Robusta harvest and cup all the lots as they came off the drying patio. Whilst there he learned about the benefits of drip irrigation in relation to yield, quality and bean size – all with positive outcomes.
Pat was able to spend many hours with Nishant roasting, cupping, blind tasting, discussing and evaluating the Robusta lots. The end result for Veneziano Coffee was a decision to purchase the washed, natural and Peaberry Robustas.
In Pat’s own words, “All of Nishant’s coffees exceeded my expectations and raised the bar yet again, for specialty Robusta. I predict the AB Robusta will be “R” certified this year”.
The role of Kaapi Royale & Arabica
Nishant also partners with Bopana Nithin in the Indian coffee export company, Kaapi Royale. Together they export fine Indian Arabica and Robusta coffees worldwide and conduct coffee tours to India. Sethuraman Estates and Kaapi Royale are two Indian coffee businesses whose names are used interchangeably, sometimes incorrectly, the difference being that Kaapi Royale is the company representing Indian specialty coffee growers to the world; Sethuraman Estates is included amongst those.
An invaluable benefit of this enduring relationship is Veneziano’s ability to influence the cup profile of the coffee it’s committed to purchasing. Veneziano has almost 20 years’ experience creating well respected blends and offerings in specialty coffee, including the development of exclusive blends for high volume clients and is able to bring a wealth of knowledge and advice to the table; particularly regarding the palate of Australian coffee drinkers.
Sakkamma, an experienced coffee picker at Sethuraman Estates India
Back in October (2013) Veneziano asked Kaapi Royale to experiment with fermentation times and underwater soaking times in order to draw out a different cup profile from the previous year, based on new requirements back in the Melbourne roastery for some of Veneziano Coffee’s most famous blends.
Whilst Sethuraman Estates produce the worlds best Robusta coffee, significant interest still lies with the Arabica offering and the partnership between Kaapi Royale and India’s specialty Arabica growers means that they are the first choice when accessing India’s most innovative farmers.
Kaapi Royale was very open to conducting experiments that analyse various processing methods and fermentation times and pushed the boundaries with a matrix of over 30 different fermentation times and processes, ensuring Pat Connolly and company faced countless hours of cupping.
The result is that Veneziano has committed to purchasing Arabica coffee that successfully meets the desired flavour profile they were looking to achieve. Kaapi Royale is vital to the success of Veneziano’s Forza and Estate blends and this truly special business relationship shows the value beyond dollar figures in the potential of direct trade.
Honey process Robusta, India
Honey process coffee, India
Natural process coffee, India
Washed process coffee, India
17th March 2014
Entire business moves to single Richmond location
- Industry announcement, Australian specialty coffee -
Melbourne, Australia, March 2014 – Craig Dickson, Managing Director of Veneziano Coffee Roasters has confirmed that the business is moving to a new address in River Street, Richmond (VIC), the former premises of a hardware chain store, also bordered by Crown and North Streets and occupying a space of around 2,702m2.
In a move that’s designed to streamline business processes, Dickson explains: “We are currently spread out over four locations; the roastery and First Pour cafe in Bond Street Abbotsford, the warehouse a couple of blocks away in Grosvenor Street and the administration offices in Victoria Street”.
“The new building, close to Bridge Road, will provide us with ample space to consolidate our entire operation from: the First Pour cafe, cupping lab, training facility and technical servicing all under the one roof”, says Dickson.
“It also means that we’ll receive green beans, roast, store, pack and deliver from the same space, significantly reducing the number of times we handle the coffee from five down to two, something that’s quite a feat in our industry”.
The River Street site has drive through access from North Street to Crown Street, providing easy access for deliveries and despatch.
In addition to an expansive, high clearance ground floor space, the building located adjacent to the Mountain Goat Brewery comprises of a first floor office administration area and a second floor loft space, providing ample scope for Veneziano Coffee Roasters’ entire business operations.
The sale of Veneziano’s current roastery site at 22 Bond Street will help to facilitate the move. Veneziano’s move is expected to take place in three stages, commencing with the administration offices next month, followed by the roastery mid-year and the First Pour likely to be moved in 12 months’ time.
According to Dickson, “at the First Pour’s existing location we weren’t able to have a commercial kitchen, so this represents a big move for us in more ways than one; we are really excited by being able to offer on-premise dining and we anticipate running the cafe seven days a week”.
Zwei Interiors Architecture have been awarded the first stage of the project. Typical of older warehouse buildings located on the city fringe the building comes equipped with interesting original features that make it an exciting project.
Craig Dickson – Managing Director, Veneziano Coffee Roasters
AASCA President 2011 – 2013
AASCA Sponsorship Manager 2010 – 2011
AASCA Accredited Judge – over 10 years
World Certified coffee competition judge – 4 years
Managing Director, Veneziano Coffee Roasters
Veneziano Coffee Roasters - specialty roasters; award winning blends and exclusive microlot coffees; supporter of direct trade with producers and cooperatives; on site quality coffee training and education by professional baristas; First Pour café coffee bars and showrooms; home of Australian barista, latte art, cupping and roasting champions; licenced Q cuppers and World certified judge; professional espresso machines, grinders and equipment for cafe and home; Australia’s largest distributor of Chemex Coffeemakers, recipient of countless roaster and barista awards and proud supplier to over 500 of Australia’s best cafes.
The First Pours are located at:
SA – 111 Melbourne Road, Adelaide
QLD – 369 Montague Road, West End Brisbane
VIC – 26 Bond Street, Abbotsford, VIC
Distribution partnerships in:
Sydney, NSW; ACT; Sunshine Coast, Queensland and regional Victoria.
The new premises will feature Australia’s first turnkey roasting system and a First Pour espresso showroom with a fully operational kitchen and cafe.
View towards the First Pour’s future location (the area at the far wall).
The site for the new fully integrated specialty coffee roastery.
13th February 2014
We enjoy getting down to the Boathouse on the Maribyrnong River, especially on a gorgeous day. Seems like we’re not the only ones. We came across this review of it and must say, we loved it! Gary Mehigan’s Boathouse is introducing some exciting new changes in the coffee department, so definitely stay tuned for that. We’ll bring you more information on that as it becomes available. In the mean time we’ve re-posted this blog.
For a direct link, click here. Otherwise enjoy the read below!
Monday, February 3, 2014
THE BOATHOUSE – Salad Days
7 The Boulevard, Moonee Ponds, Vic 3038
Views of the Maribyrnong
The Boathouse rests on the banks of the Maribyrnong in Moonee Ponds. It is a collaboration between Gary Mehigan – judge and co-host of MasterChef Australia – and Steve Bogdani, their vision being “to share life’s simple pleasures done really well”.
Dining on the deck
Some of life’s simple pleasures that I enjoy:
– Long, leisurely lunches with dear friends
– Gossiping over good coffee
– River views
– Friendly service
– Scrumptious food
The Boathouse: tick, tick, tick, tick, tick and tick.
Waiting for the oar d’oeuvres
You’d be excused for thinking three ladies at lunch would be all, “Ooh, I’m on a diet, I’ll just have a salad.” Well, yes, we did order three salads as it happens, but we’re not on diets, and thank goodness for that because the portion sizes were more cruise ship than canoe. (In hindsight, the nibbles of olives and chorizo and spicy meatballs were not necessary, though that didn’t stop us from polishing those off, too.)
Beets an’ egg salad
Vietnamese chicken coleslaw
If I had to pick a winner, it was the slow-roasted lamb salad with freekah, pomegranate and tahini; goddamn, that lamb was melt-in-the-mouth good. But the Vietnamese coleslaw with chicken, nuts and a wedge of lime was fresh, tasty and crisp, and the beetroot salad – with red quinoa, soft-boiled egg, walnuts and crème fraiche – was as tasty as it was pretty.
Get your freekah on! Slow-roast lamb salad
Other pluses: the space is vast inside and out, so even when it gets busy you’re still sure to find a table (though the car park can fill up). The room to manoeuvre, location on the riverbank, and excellent public playground on one side also means that prams and their owners are plentiful, but do not obstruct or overrun the place. And for parents of little ones who just won’t sit still, the Boathouse has a takeaway kiosk facing the playground for all your babycino-on-the-go needs.
My final verdict for Gary’s Boathouse? Nautical but nice.
Every boathouse needs a boat