Author: CK

coffee

Talking coffee: the Flat White

How would you describe a Flat White? Like any other coffee, your experience will no doubt depend on where you buy it. I’ve had some good cups and some terrible ones. So, what is a Flat White? There’s a fair bit of debate about this particular coffee, but the general consensus is that it originated in Australia and is a smaller, stronger version of the Latte. I remember drinking my first as a take-away on Berwick Street in London Soho. Being mainly versed in the Cappuccino and Americano, it was like a punch to the head. A good one, if that’s possible. A Flat White has proportionally more coffee to milk than the average. Typically served in a smaller cup, it’s two ‘short’ double shots of espresso, with steamed milk that is prepared and poured in a way that adds a thin, velvety micro-foam. Here are the steps to making it: A 8-9oz cup Two ‘short’ double shots of espresso Texture full-fat milk until it becomes a creamy micro-foam Pour milk into the cup and fold through the coffee, leaving no layer …

hipster cat

Love for the hipster

Let’s get it out there: we want to spread love for the hipster. “Grab your fancy coffee, slide into those skinny jeans and hop on your Fixie,” says the guy in a YouTube video. “Because we’re going where everyone seems to go: down Hipster Lane.” In this video, Trace from a channel called D-News argues with sarcastic glee that hipsters are conformist types who all end up looking and acting the same. Whereas ‘non-hipsters buy the emotions behind products’, he says, ‘hipsters buy things that run counter to their emotional interests’. ‘They purchase things they subconsciously hate and then convince themselves that they are not part of the trend that is bad’. Really? Perhaps calling someone a hipster is a bit like calling someone a hippie back in the day – it’s just a tag others use. But, if we run with the idea that there is such a thing as a hipster, the following seem to fit the persona: Rejecting blind consumerism Supporting independent, local retailers Supporting independent music Supporting the idea of recycling and reusing (from shoes …

mast brothers

Mast Brothers set sail

Team AN took a trip down to Shoreditch today for the launch of the eagerly anticipated Mast Brothers shop in Redchurch Street, Shoreditch. A high-end chocolate shop opening on Valentine’s Day – it’s a pretty good hook, right? The two brothers, Michael and Rick Mast, opened their first shop in Williamsburg NYC in 2007, and the London flagship store is only the second anywhere on the planet. We were lucky enough to get to the shop in Brooklyn last year and it sure is an inspiring space, with sacks of raw produce packed high and a clear view into the production area where young chocolateers work away in their whites. According to website Inc.com, Mast Brothers ‘sources its organic cocoa beans from locations including Belize and Papua New Guinea, and ships them to Brooklyn by sailboat. There, it roasts, shells and grinds the beans together with just cane sugar, ignoring the palm oils and other additives found in much commercial chocolate’. “Like steak, we kind of cook our beans medium rare,” Rick Mast told a …