Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Customer Spotlight: The Cable Car!!


The Cable Car cinema is an essential landmark for Providence, RI.  In business since 1976, and acquired by current owners Daniel and Emily in 2008, the Cable Car is an independent art house cinema that also serves a limited menu, coffee, beer and wine, making it a great place to meet with friends or to do work, as well as see all different kinds of films, ranging from classics, award nominees of all sorts, and independent films.

The Cable Car is located on South Main Street, which Daniel noted as being a great location.  Situated right across from the RISD architecture and industrial design building, Cable Car staff feels the impact by the students working hard on interesting projects.  There is always the potential for an engaging conversation.


Apart from being a great cafe, the Cable Cars  cinema is what makes this place a must visit location in Providence-  The film program is curated by Daniel and Emily and is always changing.  Not only are films shown that might be hard to otherwise see, many times, community  events surround the film.  For instance, Cable Car hosted an event for Record Store Day, where they screened “Last Shop Standing, The Rise, Fall, and Rebirth of the Independent Record Shop,” and then had live music, food trucks, and a vinyl record sale in conjunction What Cheer Records & Antiques, Analog Underground Records, RIAM Collector The Colonel Johnny Maguire, Armageddon Records and In Your Ear Records.  

Recently, they did an event with Girls Rock RI, showing the “The Punk Singer,” followed by a discussion and then karaoke!  “The Punk Singer” is still available to see TODAY and TOMORROW! (Dec 18-19th)

These events tie into the Cable Car’s mission.  There are not many single screen, art house cinemas are a thing of the past.  The Cable Car represents a public space, for the community and businesses to come together to share interests and collaborate.  

Stop by to have a taste of their exclusive coffee or espresso blend and check out what films are screening:

Friday, July 19, 2013

The Annual Mid Atlantic Northeast Coffee Conference

7 years running!!
It is time once again for all the coffee fans at every stage in the coffee community spectrum to join at New Harvest Coffee Roasters for a weekend of COFFEE and all coffee related things.

Need perfect your latte art?  Want to see what green coffee grading is all about?  Want to know more about the coffee trade? Have you never stood behind an espresso machine before but would like to know a little more about the inner workings of it?

This is a conference for everyone, and we are very proud of what it has become to our local Northeast community!

This year, the conference will take place on September 27th and 28th, with a short send off breakfast event on Sunday the 29th.  We are still working out the last minute details, but as of right now, THIS is what you have to look forward to:

  • Keynote address and cocktail party with keynote speaker GEORGE HOWELL!!!!


  • Coffee Tasters Flavor Wheel class and a Sensory Analysis class taught by Beth Ann Casperson and Mike Mowry of Equal Exchange Coffee.
  • A coffee varieties and cultivars lecture and cupping presented by Cafe Imports
  • A round table discussion of origin, through the eyes of farmer, exporter, importer, and roaster, all involved with the Royal Coffee NY Microlots program
  • A Green Coffee Grading lecture and cupping presented by Rob Stephen of InterAmerican Coffee.
  • A latte art throwdown and karoake PARTY on Saturday night, with awesome prizes and free beer! . 
  • Labs on latte art, espresso extraction, and espresso machines and grinders. 
  • Discussions on the coffee trade and local coffee communities.
And more to come!

We have incredible presenters and also wonderful sponsors:
La Marzocco USA, Marco, Barista Magazine, Aeropress, Urnex, Curtis, Chemex, WholeFoods, Barista Pro Shop, Irving Farm Coffee, One Village Coffee, Square One Coffee, Dallis Coffee, Toddy, and again, more to come!

We are almost set to launch the official website and registration information.  Please stay tuned to the New Harvest Coffee Roasters facebook page, or the official MANE Coffee Conference facebook page ( for more information as it comes along.
ALSO, we are looking for volunteers !  Volunteering for a few hours during the conference = FREE entry!
Please contact if you are interested!!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Customer Feature: The Coffee Depot in Warren, RI

For our next customer feature, I (Ana) went to the lovely town of Warren Rhode Island to visit The Coffee Depot, New Harvest customer since 2002. The Coffee Depot can be described as "the hub" of downtown Warren.  This was apparent immediately.  The first thing manager Mary Jackson did was lead me to "the round table" in the center of the sitting room, occupied by a handful of people.

This group comes to Coffee Depot everyday and sit at the table, talking about politics and current events as well as doing the crossword together and reading horoscopes.  One woman called it "group therapy."  Some are Rhode Island natives, others moved here years ago, some knew each other before hand and others just became familar faces from frequenting the shop everyday. Eventually, this group all became friends, and this action seems to sum up what the Coffee Depot means to the locals.  It is a really tight knit, regular customers driven shop. One of the people I was talking to said The Coffee Depot is like an initiation if you are new: it's a good indication that someone wants to be friends with you if they take you here!

Mary pointed out a man working away in the corner and said that he had basically written his college dissertation at the Coffee Depot.  Portraits wrap around the wall, painted by an employee, featuring regular customers - a few of the round table members were up there! Even as I sat there, having my horoscope read, a friend of mine walked in! I'd only been there 10 minutes and I already had this wonderful feeling of community.

                                                       (Joe Fletcher, great musician!!)

                                                         Mural of Regular Customers

                                                Having my horoscope read by my new friends

To sum it up, the regular customers had such wonderful things about the Coffee Depot.  It's a great place to bring a laptop and work, and a great place to catch up.  It offers food options, an open mic night, and a frequent coffee buyer card!

and outdoor seating, referred to as The Coffee Depot Beach

Check out their facebook page for more info!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Meet The Fam Round: Better Late Than Never (or Corey Needs to Buy a Computer)

Who are you?
I am Eric Lepine.

What do you do?
I am the Head Roaster at New Harvest Coffee.

Tell us something interesting/funny about yourself  
I can dunk but choose not to because my unwithering restraint only proves how powerful I really am.

When did you first get into coffee?
I first really got into coffee when I was a coffee buyer for Whole Foods Market in 2006.

What is the single most significant moment in your coffee life thus far?
I have been to farms in Costa Rica, Guatemala and Honduras now.  Each of those trips were unique and provided me with new things to learn and new experiences to take home.  Being a part of the MANE Coffee Conference has also been something I don't take for granted.  Also working with Providence Coffee Society has been a rewarding experience that has allowed me to meet and bond with many of the best coffee professionals RI has to offer.

Since working at New Harvest what has changed about your outlook on coffee?
I think I am a lot more humble about my work.  I know I'll never have all the answers, but it makes every day interesting.

Favorite coffee at the moment?  
Finca Santa Isabel, Guatemala...perhaps biased since this is the first coffee I've ever visited at origin, roasted and brewed.  

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Meet The Fam: Production Players

Taylor is the main reason coffee gets to you.

Who are you?
Taylor Roy

What do you do?
Production manager

Tell us something interesting/funny about yourself:
I won an egg toss contest in Marc Ecko's backyard

When did you first get into coffee?
I started drinking coffee pretty young, but it was instant coffee doused in cream and sugar given to me in secret by my grandma. I didn't get into coffee for real until I stumbled upon New Harvest through a teacher at my school and set up an internship.

What is the single most significant moment in your coffee life thus far?
When I realized you don't have to add cream and sugar to coffee

Since working at New Harvest, what has changed about your outlook on coffee?
Everything - my outlook has taken a 180 degree turn since beginning a internship here when I was 15. I had little to no appreciation for all of the work that goes into coffee's journey from the farmers to the baristas. I feel much better knowing what I know now and am eager to share this with others. 

Favorite coffee at the moment?
Santa Isabel

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Meet The Fam: The Devlin Returns

Who are you?
My name is Devlin Rice

What do you do?
 A variety of tasks around HQ but primarily roasting.

Tell us something interesting/funny about yourself:
I competed for (with?) New Harvest in the 2008 + 2009 NERBC (northeast regional barista competition). I roasted my own espressos' in 2009 I used the Don Telmo Reserva (from Finca El Roble, which we have new crops in now) single origin espresso. Voted best at the comp by the judges!

When did you first get into coffee? 
My passion for coffee was discovered in 2006 when Rik hired me part time for production. I found every facet of the job fascinating and wanted to get more involved from there ultimately leading to roasting.

What is the single most significant moment in your coffee life thus far?
 Working in Baltimore for Jay Caragay at Spro coffee. When I started there I had never been a working Barista, just a quality focused roaster. Every roaster wants their customers to represent their coffee with the highest quality, to showcase the all of the nuance and character that the price calls for. By working with a "by the cup" shop from the start I feel like I experienced a number of challenges that both shops and roasters face. Realizing that there is a healthy balance between welcoming your customers to the specialty coffee process and bulling them with knowledge they might not be ready for, is a take away that all baristas should have. 

Since working at New Harvest, what has changed about your outlook on coffee?
I just liked it before, but New Harvest took it out of the commodity category for me and into a revered craft.

Favorite coffee at the moment?
Washed Nura Korate

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Nu Metal Erick

Pretty sure that Erick doesn't like Nu Metal.  He may hate it.  However he is the newest staff member.  Let's get to know him.
There are only pictures of him pouring cappuccinos.  There is simply no evidence he exists otherwise.

Who are you?
Erick Armbrust

What do you do?
Barista/Morning Supervisor @ New Harvest Coffee and Spirits

Tell us something interesting/funny about yourself:
I am a practicing sculptor and a pretty decent shot with a bow and arrow.  I enjoy long walks on the beach especially when there are weird bones that wash up on the shore. 

When did you first get into coffee? 
I first got into coffee through The Greenleaf Coffee Co-op at Guilford College in Greensboro, NC.  In addition to being a horizontally run business full of passionate, rad people, the Greenleaf was my first exposure to coffee on an artisan level, as well as concepts like Fair and Direct Trade.

What is the single most significant moment in your coffee life thus far?
Its a dead heat between my first cup of shade grown Ethiopia (blew my mind) and when I went to Siena, Italy and realized that, at least in northern Italy, the espresso is rubbish.  

Since working at New Harvest what has changed about your outlook on coffee?
I've definitely experienced a huge growth-spurt in terms of coffee knowledge since coming here, and my desire to further my own coffee education both on and off the clock is given a substantial boost by my coworkers and our clientele.  Since coming on board, I've been more freely able to immerse myself in both the culinary and the cultural celebration of coffee.

Favorite coffee at the moment?
Colombia Valle del Cauca

Meet The Fam: (continued)

Who are you?
Corey Stroffolino

What do you do?
Barista, QC, Assistant Tech, Future Shop Manager NHC&S, Run on Sentences

Tell us something interesting/funny about yourself:
I would trade any skill I have to watch Jim dunk a basketball.

When did you first get into coffee?
My parents let me try coffee when I was really young, about eight or nine.  I remember taking my first sip with a little milk and sugar and loving it, for some reason.  Could have been a lot of sugar, I was young and details are blurry. I attribute this early exposure and not genetics to my lack of height (is this still a thing?).  At 19, I got my first coffee job at Starbucks and loved how much there was to learn about something I thought was so simple. Moving to RI, I worked at Olga’s Cup and Saucer, who uses New Harvest coffee and started meeting some of the NH family there, as they would pop in from time to time.  As luck would have it, years down the line I would end up working here.  Every year I learn more, and realize there is so much more to learn.

What is the single most significant moment in your coffee life thus far?
5 foot 6 (see: early exposure)

Since working at New Harvest, what has changed about your outlook on coffee?
Realizing I have only scratched the surface at what there is to know about coffee and the specialty industry.  Working here has given me the resources to keep learning and the encouragement to keep being excited about doing so.

Favorite coffee at the moment?
Kenya AA Nyeri Gatomboya

Tuff Guy

Now, some of the New Harvest crew have older profiles deep in the blog.  Jim is one of them.  But who wants to click through pages?  (You should though. Good stuff.)

Who are you?
Jim Connolly

What do you do?
Lead Technician, Coffee Sales

Tell us something interesting/funny about yourself:
I would trade any skill I have for the ability to dunk a basketball.

When did you first get into coffee?
In my mid 20's, I was a late bloomer. I was working a commission based sales job and the only way to make some real money was to work 6-7 days a week. Eventually I just fell into the coffee routine the rest of the salesman were on. Like many New Englander's, my gateway coffee was flavored iced coffee "extra extra." From there I dropped an "extra" at a time until I was drinking black coffee, preferably dark roasts. That led into leaving chains behind and focusing on smaller, local shops and my torrid love affair with coffee began.

What is the single most significant moment in your coffee life thus far?
Rory Vangrol (friend of mine, former NH employee) deciding to move back to Rochester, NY. It opened up a roster spot and I was able to sneak into the NH family.

Since working at New Harvest, what has changed about your outlook on coffee?
Not much has changed with MY outlook but with climate change and leaf rust I think we should be more worried about COFFEE's outlook.

Favorite coffee at the moment?
Ethiopia Nura Korate

Meet The Fam

Over the next week or two, I will be rolling out little interviews with my fellow employees.  These will be accompanied by precious moments, immortalized in still frame.

Who are you?

What do you do?
Barista Trainer/Quality Control/Customer Support

Tell us something interesting/funny about yourself:
I draw pictures of historical figures but their faces are hamsters 

When did you first get into coffee?
I got a job at a local cafe in high school because my best friend worked there. I REALLY got into coffee though when I got trained by New Harvest for a new job.

What is the single most significant moment in your coffee life thus far?
Seeing hundreds of coffee trees on the side of a basically, vertical drop mountain side and realizing the cherries are picked by hand. 

Since working at New Harvest, what has changed about your outlook on coffee?
Everything. What it takes to grow coffee, to process it, to sell it, which then changes your outlook on why it's important to prepare it correctly. So much work goes into getting the beans here, and we want to showcase all the hard work of the farmers! 

Favorite coffee at the moment?
Our new Rwanda Gitesi

Friday, April 26, 2013

Corey and Ana go North!

Corey and I (Ana) set off Wednesday morning, accompanied by the new Brown Bird album (former New Harvest employee!) to visit D Squared Java in Exeter, New Hampshire.   Owner Dan Demers is operating the kind of shop that roasters dream about: totally about the coffee, with a passionate and inquisitive outlook that informs everything that they do. A chalk board lists the origin and roaster of each coffee offered, which you can get either as a chemex, aeropress, or espresso- with flavor notes on each method. They also do clever iced coffee to order in the summer.

Serendipitously, Corey and I went up on the day that Daniel and two other local roasters started doing weekly cuppings.  We brought up some samples, including our new Guatemala Santa Isabel and Rwanda  Karongi Gitesi so it ended up being a cupping with 3 different roasters, which was great for variety and conversation.  All the coffees were beautiful, and as always, it’s good to try what other roasters are doing.  We were lucky because the roaster Red Rover brought an Ethiopian Kochere, which was a staff favorite when we carried it a few months ago at New Harvest, so we got to compare. I loved the CQ Roasters Ethiopian Saris Abaya, and Claudia from CQ Roasters really loved our Santa Isabel.  Overall, each coffee held its own and it was a great table!

We then tried Daniel’s version of New Harvest’s Colombian Hacienda El Roble:  as a shot of espresso, and then as an aeropress.  The espresso shot was really wonderful, super balanced, oaky, with a milk chocolate finish that lingered minutes after the shot was gone.  The aeropress was delicious as well, with more dark cherry notes present than in the shot of espresso. 

Heavily over caffeinated, Corey and I returned south, stopped at the beautiful and spacious Voltage Coffee and Art in Cambridge, MA, which is going to feature New Harvest Coffee as a guest coffee.  We then stopped by to visit our good friends in Jamaica Plain- ULA! I was determined to visit them as a customer instead of coming in after hours to train new staff, because they are always posting delicious things on their Facebook page that I want to try!

We got hydrating herbal iced teas (even coffee people hit their limit!) and continued home to Lil’ Rhody. It was a wonderful trip, and so great to see our beloved New Harvest Coffee being made with such care all the way up in New Hampshire.  If you know anyone in or around Exeter, N.H., recommend they stop by DSquared!

BONUS- our pictures of Exeter, N.H.

Trying to take a photo of the adorable Water St., but Ana walked into the picture.

An artist adopted this small garden and gave the trees sweaters.   

Thursday, April 18, 2013

         New Harvest has a long history with White Electric Coffee, our first wholesale customer. White Electric got its name from the weird, pie-shaped building it started in at 150 Broadway. The former lawnmower-repair shop along with the ancient house next door was purchased by Rik & Paula, the founders of New Harvest, in 1995. The space spent the late 90s going through a number of iterations, including recording studio, art happening space & the original home of the Urban Greens Food Co-Op.
White Electric Coffee opened in 2001 and a few years later moved to its current location at 711 Westminster Street. Owner Tom Toupin has developed an eclectic, industrial d├ęcor that even includes his own art work (look for the giant illuminated letters). Tom’s baristas also do their work on the only lever espresso machine in Providence, whose classic mechanical quality fits in perfectly with everything else.

     The huge windows facing Westminster shine a lot of light on the fact that White Electric is the quintessential urban community-driven shop. Tables are at a high premium, with lots of regulars who make it a point to stop by at least once a day. It is the nerve center of the city’s West Side, with community posting board that stretches the length of the back hallway.
     White Electric is also known for its friendly staff, who are as much a part of the community fabric as the flyers on the wall and WE’s famous avocado & cream cheese sandwich. In addition to coffee and tea, Tom also offers a variety of baked goods, salads and sandwiches. They keep it small & local, sourcing from Foremost Bakery, Iggy’s, Rainbow Bakery and Donut Bazaar.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Profile: Seven Stars Bakery

It's safe to assume that if you're a local and you're reading the New Harvest blog that you've heard of Seven Stars Bakery. Heck, you've probably stopped into one of their three locations a few times this week. Since 2001, Jim & Lynn William's bakeries have become staples in Providence, churning out some of the finest baked goods around as well as a few hundred thousand cups of coffee.

You read that right, they sold over three hundred thousand cups of hot and iced coffee in 2012 and that's not even counting espresso based drinks. Considering that Seven Stars is first and foremost an artisan bakery they sure go through a LOT of coffee. Over 40 thousand lbs of coffee to be exact and they hold their coffee program to the same high standards as their award winning baked goods.

All Seven Stars baristas must go through a certification program before they can make you that delicious cappuccino you love so well. 3 weeks of classes on properly extracting espresso and milk science, coupled with 10-15 hours hours of bar practice, leads into in-store training with that locations head barista (each store has one). After their training program each barista is tested on every drink that Seven Stars offers and once they can hit 5 stars on each drink they become an official Seven Stars Certified barista. So next time you're in there and you see that phrase on the back of your barista's shirt, get stoked, because you're about be served a certified top-notch drink.


These outstanding baristas fall under the watchful eye of coffee director Mark Hundley, who stresses that across the board, consistency is key for 7 Stars. "We have customers that will visit all 3 locations on a regular basis and their drink needs to be the same in Rumford as it was at Hope St." says Hundley as we chat at the Broadway location. "We're committed to serving the best whether it's coffee or food."

Seven Stars is also committed to serving the local community. Each year on their anniversary, January 2nd, they donate 100% of their sales from all three locations to the Rhode Island Food Bank. Since starting in 2006, this tradition has raised over $60,000 for the food bank. In the fall of 2012 they introduced a new program called Community Giving Days. On the first Tuesday of every month a portion of sales from all locations is donated to that months charity.

You can read more about Seven Stars on their website or better yet, stop into one of their locations and chat with the friendly staff. While you're there, grab a tasty treat and pair it with a fresh cup of coffee or a perfectly extracted shot of Whisper Espresso, you won't regret it.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Easter week is a great time to check out Pastiche Fine Desserts at 92 Spruce Street in Federal Hill.  It is a comfortable and welcoming bakery, with a fire place and a display case full of some incredible looking desserts!

Owners Eileen Collins & Brandt Heckert started by providing restaurants in the Providence area with their homemade desserts.  They had such a great response that they decided to open Pastiche in 1983 on Federal Hill, long before the neighborhood became a destination for great food.

With all of the great restaurants now flourishing on Broadway and Atwells, the location couldn’t be more perfect. “Even though parking can sometimes deter people from coming to this area, what’s better than having a great meal, coming in to get some dessert, and taking a nice walk back to your car?” says Amy Foster, the manager of Pastiche. Between the environment, the cakes, tarts and cookies and the friendly staff, it’s a great place to go any time of day, for any occasion.  
The overall concept of Pastiche according to Brandt is simple, but he believes it’s what has kept them in business for 30 years. “Being there, having a great product, but most importantly always being consistent.” This means sticking to their core values, buying local whenever possible, and always paying attention to detail and quality.  Amy added that it is important for her to hire the right people: a staff that gets along translates into great energy and customer service in the front of the house, which they also cite for their success.  

The sitting area was so comfortable I didn’t want to leave. Lucky for me, I got to sample a cake from Pastiches new Spring/Summer menu, which offers lighter desserts like a lemon custard tart or the passion fruit coconut cake, which was the one I got to try. It was a perfect spring dessert, light and not overly sweet, and the passion fruit mousse filling was bright and super-fresh.

Need a dessert for the Easter holiday?  Pastiche will have lots of desserts on display, but be sure to call ahead to be safe.  Popular items like their beautiful fresh fruit tart always sell out!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Travel Dispatch from Marcala

Eric Lepine is our Head Roaster and recently returned from a trip to Honduras to source top microlot coffee as well as reconnect with members of the COMSA cooperative. In addition to lots from small farms COMSA coffee is also currently a key component of our Whisper Espresso Blend. New Harvest has been sourcing from COMSA since 2010. Here are Eric's reflections on his trip:
                Marcala is a municipality in the Honduran department of La Paz, located in the southwest of the country.  It is home to the COMSA Cooperative where we source a variety of coffees of great quality.  My goal in Marcala was to source various microlots as part of our single origin offerings for 2013.  Look for these coffees to be available for late spring or early summer!
                I arrived in Tegucigalpa on a Saturday afternoon.  If you haven’t flown into the airport here before let me tell you that it is quite an experience unto itself.  I am told this is the second shortest runway in the world due to its location in the mountains.  Landing here is difficult and my plane definitely bounced off the runway practically knocking me out of my seat.  The first day here was spent meeting the other 9 roasters and buyers who were accompanying me on this trip.  We had a really great dinner and some drinks and retired early to make the 3 hour trip by bus to Marcala.
                Day two was also pretty low key.  We drove to Marcala, set up shop at our new hotel and then the people of COMSA arranged for a celebration of which included dinner, presenting us all with cupping aprons and a live performance by Guillermo Anderson.  I had not heard of him before but apparently he is a world renowned musician.  I really enjoyed it actually.  He plays a fusion of traditional Honduran folk, Caribbean and blues and his songs are very centric to Honduran life.  It really struck me as pretty incredible that not only COMSA had arranged this for us but that Mr. Anderson was overwhelmingly happy to perform for some coffee roasters and farmers.
                The third day was when we got down to business.  Over the next 3 days we would cup coffee from 109 farms, visit 5 farms, the COMSA wet and dry mills and have quite a lot of great meals and conversations with producers.  The members of COMSA are hardworking, savvy and incredibly proud people.  The quality of the coffee here is great and we were able to find a great many truly excellent coffees even in light of the coffee rust problems that are beginning to greatly affect many farms in Central America.  Some farms here have entirely succumbed to devastation from coffee rust or Roja as they call it in Central America.  COMSA estimates that this will affect 30-40% of all production.  Despite this, most of the producers seemed to have a very positive attitude and they believe that in the long run this epidemic will cause them to modernize and find new solutions to these problems and will allow them to stand on stronger legs in the future.
                I am thankful for the experiences I had and the people I met in Marcala.  I fully expect coffee quality to increase each year despite the decline in production.  The producers here are incredibly resilient and I am confident that they will indeed triumph over adversity and it inspires me to do what I can for my part to share the quality and hard work that is the literal fruit of their labor.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Daily Cupping

Ana sets up for the daily cupping in the Training Center. Every day at 2:30, baristas, roasters, trainers, techs and produccionistas get together to taste coffee.