February 25, 2016

Pacific Northwest Coffee Adventures - Extracto Coffee

Continuing my Pacific Northwest coffee adventure, I stopped by Extracto Coffee Roasters.  The front of the store is rather unassuming, with a single sidewalk board to announce the shop.  A comfy place, bedecked with laptop users, an immaculate espresso bar, featuring lovely decor, and piles of burlap sacks full of un-roasted coffee beans lining the back of the shop.  The ambient sounds of what I think was Sigur Ros was filling the air.  They have dairy products also.
This afternoon, I felt like a chocolate beverage, so I opted for a mocha, getting an Americano for Melissa.  The chocolate in the mocha was quite understated, with an almost whisky like consistency.  If I was to idealize what a whisky mocha would be, this would have fit the bill.  Not sure that is what I am generally looking for in a chocolaty beverage, but it was exquisite, none the less.  Will be making a return trip to Extracto, but most likely for a con panna espresso!

February 20, 2016

Pacific Northwest Coffee Adventures - Water Ave

Another adventure is Coffeedom landed me at Water Ave Coffee.  Located in the industrial zone of Portland, there is a large commercial complex where shops and business have perched.  Water Ave Coffee is one of these business.  This shop serves espresso.  They do not serve Con Pana.    The store also features a fair amount of the retro-industrial 'East German' furniture.

I've noted two major trends in the shops featuring espresso of the greater Portland area.  One trend would be to not stock dairy or accoutrements for your espresso.  My assumption is that there is maintained an axiom that true purveyors of espresso would never befoul espresso with something as profane as whip creme.
My second observation is I believe coupled with the first.  That is, if a store doesn't serve anything except espresso (and/or espresso with water), the probability that there will be industrial furniture in tow rises exponentially.

I suppose it's a natural progression to have coffee shops that only serve espresso and water, and are clinically uncomfortable.   However, these seem to miss the warmth and heart that I've enjoyed

February 19, 2016

Pacific Northwest Coffee Adventures - River Maiden

Traversing through the greater Portland Area, one of my favorite coffeeshops has turned out to be the River Maiden Artisan Coffee.  Serving excellent coffee, and featuring a decent atmosphere to do coffeeship things, such as chatting, reading, and computing.  They serve up wonderfully extracted and presented Stumptown Coffee Roasters, have a beautiful enthusiasm for their local Vancouver.
I've done a fair bit of reading so far at the River Maiden, and appreciate the comfortable environment, which is distinctly lacking in retro-industrial unfinished furniture.  They also showcase art on their walls, as well.  In fact, in some ways, River Maiden reminds me of one of my favorite coffeeshops of all time, the long defunct Crooked House in Salem, Oregon.  Thanks for the great coffee and excellent atmosphere.

February 17, 2016

Pacific Northwest Coffee Adventures - Ristretto Roasters

On of my favorite stops so far on my tour de force of the espresso/coffee shops of the greater Portland is Ristretto Roasters.  Their coffee was excellent, a pure and hearty espresso, and Con Pana!
In character with the Portland vibe, of industry Retro-fab East Germanesque, the chair and stools seemed to have been soviet re-issues.  Alas, there is something wrong with Portland.   But other than the furniture, the coffee and shop at Ristretto Roasters is not the problem.
Look forward to visiting Ristretto again!

Fallout 4

Computer games have come along way in the last 20 years.  Since watching friends play the first and second Fallout, computer graphics have had and influx of technical innovation that is astounding.
Fallout 4 is the latest offering of the gritty Fallout universe.  The Fallout world is an alternate universe based upon a divergent outcome from the 1950s.  It is retro-dystopian atomic powered rampage.
From the Bethesda Softworks Studio, which gave us such blockbusters/timesinks as Elder Scrolls: Skyrim, Elder Scrolls: Morrowind, Elder Scrolls: Oblivion, Fallout 3, and Fallout 3: New Vegas.  This game is much in the same first/third person RPG that the previous games have given us.  With more polish and continued depth and story development.
The game was excellent, and as Skyrim, has the possibility to sink as much time as you want to surrender to it.  I was lucky enough to only surrender a few weeks of playtime, though they were quite enjoyable.

February 15, 2016

Pacific Northwest Coffee Adventures - Coava Coffee

After arriving in the Pacific Northwest, I've had the opportunity to appraise the coffee landscape.  While I've had windows of opportunity to glimpse some sublime coffee practitioners, being in Portland also for some excellent opportunity to survey the greater Portland landscape, hipsters and all.
Coava Coffee was on the list of must visits.  The Espresso was excellent.  They are espresso only, so if you want some con pana on that doppio, you are out of luck.  The shop itself was some sort of industrial retro-cycle.  A pattern of metal stools with no pads seems to have pervaded with the hipsters.  Overall, excellent espresso, and not much else.