Chiasso wins Gold Trophy Award at AICA!!

We have been celebrating here at Chiasso!  We recently took out a Gold Medal and the Champion Filter Trophy award at the AICA (Australian International Coffee Awards) for our single origin Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Kochere coffee.  

A bit of insight into the background of this special bean.  
Ethiopia is thought by many to be the birthplace of coffee, that is where the plant Coffea Arabica first originated. There's also the myth of Kaldi, the goatherd, who purportedly discovered coffee's stimulating effects after seeing his goats acting energetically after they'd nibbled on the red coffee berries. That story originates from the 9th century and while it's authenticity is sometimes debated what's not up for debate is that Ethiopia is the home of some of the world's very best coffee. They've been producing coffee for centuries now and it's fair to say they know what they're about. 
Ethiopia's geography is uniquely suited to the cultivation of coffee. Plenty of sunshine, just enough rain at the right times, great soil and lots of mountains to provide the altitude required for the very best beans. 
At Chiasso HQ we're all pretty used to drinking good Ethiopian coffees but we really fell in love with this washed Grade 1 (the very best grade) coffee from Kochere, a district in the Yirgacheffe region of Ethiopia. When we say a coffee is "washed" we are referring to the process of removing the fruit from the bean using water. Washing the fruit away produces wonderfully clean and sweet flavours in the cup. We knew it was a great coffee and were delighted to see that it score so highly with the judges at the Australian International Awards.    
We hand roast all of our specialty coffee on our micro roaster, the New Zealand made Stonka.  It’s all down to timing and experience with the Stonka. It roasts only 3 kg at a time so we have been quite busy roasting on it lately - just to ensure there are enough award winning beans to go around! 
The AICA, conducted by The Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria, is Australia’s first and only international coffee awards rewarding and recognising excellence. With New Zealand no longer holding independent coffee awards the AICA is one of the only places for roasters in this country to gain recognition for their craft and for the provenance of their beans.The 2018 AICA took place at Melbourne Showgrounds from 7-9 March. A total of 743 entries were judged over 3 days by a panel of industry experts led by Head Judge, Melissa Caia.
We've stocked up on this lot of Kochere. The word is that the next harvest may not be quite as special. If that's true then it's a shame but that's part and parcel with dealing with a natural product. Some years are simply going to be better than others. We will be enjoying this lot as long as we can and then we'll move onto trying to find next season's best beans. 
If you want to try some of the trophy winning coffee for yourself please grab a bag from our Devonport shop, or pick up a bag online here
We recommend making this coffee in either the immersion style (like plunger (french press), aeropress or siphon) or as a pour over filter coffee. But we've also been enjoying it through the espresso machine so don't be put off trying it if that's your preferred method.

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Papua New Guinea


We love Papua New Guinea's coffee, not just for its superb bean quality but also knowing that we are supporting traditional and sustainable practices that have been in place for a very long time.
The vast majority of coffee produced in Papua New Guinea comes from small holders, with many being subsistence farmers. Coffee is an important source of income for the whole country but especially for the highland tribes.
PSC stands for "premium small holder" which is a coffee grown by small holder farmers rather than by a large farm or estate in PNG. The majority of the coffee trees in Papua New Guinea were planted in the 1960's, from good quality bean stock from Jamaican Typica (a.k.a Blue Mountain) and Bourbon varietals of Coffea ArabicaTypica was the original coffee varietal of Coffea Arabica and the trees are generally lower yield than other varietals, but the cup quality is excellent. Bourbon was a naturally occurring mutation of Typica which produces a slightly higher yield with a distinctive sweetness.      
Premium small holder coffee is grown without using chemicals, hand picked, often shade grown and/or with mixed crops. This is a co-operative system so the coffee is centrally processed and graded using the wet process (washed) and sun dried on patios. The best coffee from this process is graded as PSC. This initiative is highly sustainable, quality focused and produces good results in terms of vital income for the small holders, a low environmental impact and also a great cup for coffee consumers.    
This coffee is grown in a natural way, ripe berries are picked by hand and pulped communally, before being sun dried on giant patios for a few days. Finally the beans washed and polished and then ready for export. 

Using our state of the art Italian made roaster the beans are slow roasted to a medium brown colour. The resulting cup displays good acidity and body with smooth creamy, chocolaty flavour accompanied by hints of nut.  

Monday, 29 October 2018

Coffee Kids



Here at Chiasso we have been looking at ways we can give back to the Coffee community.  

We have found an organisation that really could benefit from donation support.  

Smallholder coffee farmers face a variety of challenges such as climate change, an inconsistent cash flow, an erratic coffee market, and inadequate access to land to produce enough to support a family.  The result is that the next generation is largely deciding that staying on the farm isn't worth their time. 

Through rural business workshops, Coffee Kids helps young farmers realize their full potential as part of the global coffee community. The trainings provide space where young men and women learn how to apply their creativity and ideas to develop productive enterprises in coffee within their communities. Topics include a broad business focus, such as managing the financial side of the operation, to coffee-specific, such as how to implement techniques that increase yield and bean quality.

By providing a seed capital fund over which young farmers are given collaborative decision making power, Coffee Kids simultaneously helps get community businesses off the ground and gives young farmers experience in making financial decisions. The rotating fund is replenished as businesses grow and thrive, giving young farmers a sense of how thriving businesses can lift up the entire community.






Monday, 25 September 2017

An in depth look into Turmeric Latte Mix

Our Turmeric Latte Mix... so what's in it???

Turmeric has been used traditionally in Ayurveda for centuries as a pain relieving, anti-inflammatory agent for pain and inflammation in the skin and muscles. The botanical name is Curcuma longa and it is a part of the ginger family. Curcumin, one of the active constituents of turmeric, exhibits anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and hypolipidemic properties. The curcumin content per batch of turmeric powder can vary greatly. In one study done of commercially available turmeric samples, the range of percentage of curcumin in the turmeric was from 0.58% to 3.14%. The turmeric we use in our mix is certified organic and has 5% curcumin. 

Science is finding a growing list of diseased conditions that show great potential for healing by the active ingredients of turmeric. One of the important pathogenesis in Alzheimer's disease is the chronic inflammation of nerve cells. Curcumin has a potent anti-inflammatory effect, which has shown positive outcomes in preventing AD as well as a form of treatment for those with AD. 


We use Ceylon cinnamon, or 'true cinnamon', in our Turmeric Latte Mix, as opposed to Cinnamon cassia which appears to have a high coumarin content. Coumarins are plant compounds that possess strong anticoagulant, carcinogenic and hepato-toxic properties, which could pose health risks if consumed regularly in higher quantities. Ceylon cinnamon has demonstrated numerous health benefits including anti-inflammatory properties, anti-microbial activity, reducing cardiovascular disease, boosting cognitive function and reducing risk of colon problems. 
Plus, it has the added benefit of being absolutely delicious!

Cardamom has traditionally been used for ailments such as constipation, colic, diarrhea and hypertension. Now, research has supported these uses and provides sound mechanistic background in overactive diseases of the gut. And having a healthy gut is super important! 
When gut health is out of tune, it can affect your immune system, digestive system, mood, weight, and more! 

There’s more to VANILLA than being absolutely delicious! ?? An active component of vanilla, called vanillin, has been shown to have a positive effect on the cardiovascular system, specifically with cholesterol levels. Plus, it is rich in antioxidants which are wonderful to incorporate into a healthy lifestyle to help prevent the breakdown of cells and tissues around the body.

When most people think of ginger, they think remedy for nausea… Which is true! But there’s also more! In traditional Chinese medicine, ginger is considered a pungent, dry, warming, yang herb used for elements triggered by cold, damp weather. In Ayurveda, it has been used to reduce cholesterol and fight arthritis. In one human study on the anti-inflammatory and pain relieving effects of ginger consumption, over 75% of patients with rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis and muscular discomfort reported relief from pain and swelling!

Just to spice things up a bit, let’s talk chili! I’m sure many people have heard about adding chili to foods to boost metabolism, which is due to its thermogenic nature (produces heat in the body). But the component in chili called capsaicin has pain relieving and anti-inflammatory effects. Chili is also good to remember when you’re feeling under the weather… capsaicin can aid in clearing up mucus and the beta carotene and vitamins A and C can help boost the immune system!

Black pepper in my latte?? Well, it seems like word is getting around that black pepper helps increase the bioavailability of the curcumin in Turmeric, in some cases to 2000%! So that’s how it made it into our mix, but beyond being Turmeric’s helpful companion, black pepper also has been shown to aid digestion, act as an expectorant to help in times of the cold or flu season, and provide even more anti-inflammatory compounds to this already super charged anti-inflammatory mix!


Like to try some ? -


*NOTE: this article is purely for educational purposes and not to be used for diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. Information above has been paraphrased from peer-reviewed research articles.

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Organic Coffee Blends now Certified by BioGro!

We are super excited to announce that our Organic Coffee Blends - Dolce and Pascolo - are now fully certified by BioGro! Organic certification is something close to our hearts and so we are proud to have achieved this milestone.

 Our Dolce & Pascolo blends have always comprised of coffee sourced from certified Organic farms, but now because we are officially registered and certified through BioGro standards we can now call our coffee Certified Organic! Follow this link to learn more about Biogro standards and you will see why we chose them to be our certification standard.   
Following our Biogro coffee audit we only had to make minimal changes to our roasting and packing, because we already had most of the right Organic coffee processes in place. Biogro have very specific requirements with regards to traceability and the chain of custody of Organic coffee beans. This involves us tracking and documenting the batch number of each shipment of Organic coffee from every origin farm or co-operative, through the importing channels to our Roastery door. This way we can show where all of our Organic coffee has come from and which blends it has gone into. 
We roast our organic coffee on separate days to our regular coffee beans. Before we start Organic coffee production the roaster and packing equipment is cleaned out thoroughly (no chemicals of course!), to ensure no chance of cross contamination. Following roasting the coffee is packaged into bags proudly displaying the BioGro label, along with a batch number for traceability.   
Our storage, packing and grinding areas and equipment are now totally separated for Organic coffee. Our Auditor was quite impressed with the processes we had in place and recommended us for certification following completion of a couple of minor items.
So... now when you order either Dolce or Pascolo it will have a lovely green BioGro sticker signifying all the hard work that has gone on behind the scenes bringing these two delicious blends the right to be certified. 

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Melbourne International Coffee Exhibition

Situated in Melbourne, a city known for it's foodie delights, this international coffee exhibition was certainly an eye opener!  Anything and everything to do with coffee right is showcased here under one roof.  With all the latest toys!  We saw a robot green bean sorter, which grades and sorts defects too at quite a rate. There was an app to monitor every aspect of pour over brewing, linked to a big screen. In fact all sorts of different brewing methods were on show (including all the new Tiamo's & a huge range of cold drips.                        

We tried out new milks, the Almond milk vibe has certainly taken off in Melbourne.  And we also tried Macadamia milk for the first time (milkadamia) which was really tasty.  


We also uncovered coffee packaging galore, along with all sorts of gadgets to keep us entertained. The guys at Axil Coffee Roasters had a latte art comp running - the level of latte art expertise was pretty crazy! 
We caught up with the lads at Beyond the Bean and talked syrups, smoothies, new hardware and all other things not-quite-coffee too. These guys are in 50 countries now and not showing any signs of slowing down!
Next, we sat down with some of the Ethiopian contingent, drinking coffee with them and talked about coffee bean farming, then we had our very own Chiasso logo free hand painted with coffee by an amazing artist.  Talking to others in the coffee roasting business was great too, so many passionate coffee lovers were in attendance - which is certainly great to see!  We are looking forward to the next one already.. :-)

Friday, 5 May 2017

Product Review - Aeropress


This nifty piece of equipment is one of our best travel companians.  We took this overseas last year and can honestly say it was one the easiest products to put together and use - never be without fresh espresso ever again!!
We have compiled a list of questions you may have, but if you would like to know more, get in touch!
1. Who is this product for?  Ideal for travellers/camping/boating/hikiing/ or anyone who can't bear to be without good coffee!
2. What coffee works best for this product?  Ground, med coarse.  Our recommendation is the Milano or for an organic option the ethiopian is a good choice.
3. Setup required?  Not much, super easy to put together & clean.
4. Cost/ RRP - $69. includes a years worth of filters!

Friday, 5 May 2017

Product Review - Cera Mill Hand Grinder

The Cera Mill hand coffee grinder is the perfect solution for grinding coffee "on the go".   Ceramic burrs which are heat resistant keeping the coffee at a consistent flavour.

The silicone band is for easy gripping when grinding AND it comes with a handy carry bag!


A bit more info...


1. Who is this product for?  The Cera Mill is a convenient price of equipment.  Can be used at home, travelling - it is small and easily transportable.


2. What coffee works best for this product?  The Cera Mill coffee grinder has an easily adjustable nut for either fine/coarseness, from Turkish to French Press.


3. Setup Required?  Just put the handle on and away you go!  Very easy to clean too. It stands at 185mm tall and is 50mm in diameter.


4. Cost/RRP?  $69

Tuesday, 23 May 2017