Going after the dream

Sunset from our balcony in Cornubia.

Sunset from our balcony in Cornubia.

I’ve come to realise that asking for help is hard. I don’t mean help like lifting a heavy box or moving house. I mean the type of help where you ask people to help you achieve your dream.

Everyone has struggles along their life journey, some harder than others but the one thing we all have in common is the ability to dream. I’ve heard people say that if you can dream it, you can achieve it and I hope that’s true because I visualise our dream almost every day.

I’ve also come to realise (a lot of soul searching has happened for me over the last 18 months) that we allow fear to dictate most of the decisions we make in life. This might not be true for everyone but I know for me, in the past, fear has stopped me from following different paths (good or bad), that remains to be seen. What I’m most proud about is that fear has not stood in the way of our decision to start Extraction Artisan Coffee.

It would have been so easy to give up after the fourth bank refused our business loan. It would have been so easy to let fear take over when we had to think about selling our house. It would have been so easy to say it’s too hard when state and local governments slapped us with huge bills to change the use of our building and allow cars (our potential customers) to drive to our business. Yes, its been a struggle but in comparison to the struggle of some people in the world, it is insignificant.

Our home is on the market. It’s not your average house and we have come to understand that it’ll be a special couple who make us an offer so that we can move forward and see our dream become a reality.

In the meantime, we’d love nothing more than to be able to afford to buy green beans, a coffee machine and some other equipment to at least allow us to start roasting coffee. Our beautiful Proaster roaster has been waiting patiently for six months at Coffee Roasters Australia on the Gold Coast and will be installed in our building as soon as the concrete floor has been polished and sealed. This will be a major milestone for us and makes me a little teary just thinking about it.

We’re asking for help and have started an Extraction Pozible crowdfunding campaign to help us on the way.

The generosity of people so far has been overwhelming and if you have already donated, thank you sincerely.

We are going after the dream and if you’d like to help us along the way, we’d truly appreciate your support.

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Distracted by Extraction

Hello food friends. I’m sorry I’ve been absent but I’ve been distracted by a little thing called Extraction Artisan Coffee. Apparently starting a roastery/cafe is the most difficult thing in the world, ha, who knew?

It’s all consuming on every level and to be honest my food adventures with the restaurant and cafe scene have dried up a little. I’m still cooking like a mad woman at home but available funds that used to go towards eating out are now being spent on local government charges to change the use of our building from ‘light industry’ to ‘food and beverage’ and state government charges to pay for our customers privilege to use the road outside our business!

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While I’ve been playing around with menu items for our small but perfectly formed menu, Alex has been playing with our first two pieces of equipment, a mini Proaster roaster (super cute and red) it roasts small samples of coffee beans primarily for cupping sessions and a Mahlkonig EK43 grinder.

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Speaking of which, we held our first cupping event just recently, after roasting some gorgeous micro lot Brazilian beans from 3Brothers. It was great to have so many of our friends and coffee professionals attend and enjoy the Extraction space (including Dragan Sesic, brother of World Barista Champion, Sasa Sesic).

Back to the food… Once I’m happy with the balance of items on our start up menu, I’ll post it for your feedback but in the meantime I’d love to know what’s your ‘must have’ on a cafe menu and do you approve of an all day menu?

If you’re interested in Extraction Artisan Coffee and want to follow our journey more closely please follow our Facebook page.

Until next time, drink good coffee 😀

2014 in review

According to WordPress stats, my blog was viewed approximately 13,000 times in 2014. In the big wide world of food blogging this is peanuts, but still, I’m amazed that people are interested enough to read my thoughts. If you’re reading my final post for 2014, then you are most likely one of my regular blog readers, so I’d just like to say thank you 🙂

My most popular blog of 2014 was Homemade Milo ice cream. I’m not at all surpirsed. Milo and ice cream in a title will always be a winner. This was also my most popular post in 2013 so maybe I should just concentrate my efforts on ice cream posts!

DSC00178When I reflect back on 2014 I realise how lucky I am to have had so many wonderful food experiences. Travelling to Vietnam and Cambodia was a highlight but I also had many memorable food experiences closer to home. Travelling to Adelaide for Tasting Australia, meeting Maggie Beer and developing new friendships with fellow food bloggers was inspiring. Two of my favourite meals in Brisbane this year were at Shouk cafe in Paddington and Catbird Seat Bistro in East Brisbane. If you haven’t already been, add these to your list for 2015.

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In July 2014, I challenged myself to make a Croquembouche. It was a tad lop-sided but I was so proud of my efforts. It tasted great and my friends loved it so despite a few burnt fingers and a little stress, it was worth it.

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2015 will see Al and I embark on the biggest project of our relationship. The birth of a coffee roastery/cafe in Logan City. It’s already been in the planning for eight months but short of winning gold lotto this weekend, it may take us a few more months to sort out the logistics of how we are going to make this happen without having to sell everything we own. Despite the stress of making this happen, we remain optimistic and I cannot wait to let you all know the details.

Extraction_BrownFinally, what is the last thing I baked in 2014?

A chocolate chip, sour cream orange cake and healthy date, dark chocolate and cashew nuts balls. I’m taking these sweet treats to a NYE gathering.

IMG_2596However you enjoy the final night of 2014, stay safe and enjoy some good food with your family and friends.

Much love, Heather x