“Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in a while.”
-Southern Proverb (I guess or my kinfolk just made it up.)
I have been known to say that in the past to folks when something good works out… usually even better than planned. This is certainly the case with our recently released Nitro Coffee. We discovered “nitro” about 9-12 months ago and the seed was planted. Micah began thinking how cool it would be to have something like that in McDonough. Why does all the cool stuff always start in CA or NYC and maybe it does and maybe it doesn’t even make it to the ATL… certainly never to McDonough, right?
Well, he set out to change that in the Fall of last year. He began working on a plan to bring “nitro” to our little cozy shop. What started out as a small idea quickly grew into a “what was I thinking” sort of project. It seems straightforward enough, right?
Just brew come cofeee.
Toss it into a keg.
Whoa… not so fast. Here’s the condensed version. There are a lot of ways you can brew coffee. There are a lot of different coffees you can use. Some ways to brew make a concentrate that you have to dilute but to what ratio do we use? What equipment do we use? How do we serve it? What gas do we use to pressurize the tanks and dispense? Where can I get all this stuff I need? What happened to the taste between cupping, brewing and serving? It changed a lot for sure! I think it is a safe bet that we drank a LOT of nitro coffee just trying to get the process developed and trying to answer all these questions. There were, in fact, a few times that we almost wanted to wave the white flag of surrender on “nitro”. The coffee world is a curious one in that there is so much creativity in it there is just simply no simple way to write or provide directions easily so you sort of have to make your own pathway. That’s part of the journey!
Nitro is basically a coffee served through a stout faucet to create a cascade of bubbles which in turn gives the black coffee a slightly sweet, creamy taste without cream or sugar. At Queen Bee, we use a dark roasted blend that we make in house and cold brew it for 18-24 hours. This results in a very smooth strong base to begin our nitro development. The brewed coffee is then filtered and diluted to the desired strength and kegged and stored under high pressure nitrogen. After a designated time, the nitro coffee is then served through a stout faucet under high pressure nitrogen to deliver an incredibly delicious drink that will surely give you the desire to come back for more.
As part of this product development, we also implemented a method to serve all of our iced coffees on tap. We serve our Panama Joe (caramel, vanilla mousse and island rum flavoring), Seasonal Iced Coffee as well as our Black Iced (flash brewed) coffees on tap.
We’d love to serve you one soon so drop by the shop and sit a spell with us….
This past Saturday was a fun day! I was roasting early when the street light still lit the way. Just me and the roaster making some delicious coffee before we opened for the day. It was a fun day and then we had Queen Bee POPS – Performing on the Patio Saturday. (Click here for a write up on POPS.) It was a fun night where we had some original work performed, some jazz shared on a sax as well as some “Hey! You want to play with us for a song?” performances and some McDonough written poetry! It was our third POPS but it was really the best one yet! Keep in touch with us on Facebook for info about the next events.
Enjoy this video for a sneak peek at Saturday!
Alicia is a teacher. She thinks like a teacher. She writes like a teacher. She has patience like the Greatest of Teachers. She just loves to teach. “Teaching”, however, doesn’t necessarily mean sitting in a classroom presenting rote materials to a roomful of pupils. It can simply mean sharing life with someone and sharing tiny tidbits along the way. Almost like just walking along side someone and stopping every now and then to say, “did you see that?” I think that is where this idea of Queen Bee Storytime may be rooted. Storytime gives Alicia that chance – a chance to sit alongside the kids with a book in hand and read to kids. She loves it! It gives her a chance to “teach” them but it really isn’t “teaching”at all.
For as long as I can remember, it has been a dream to have a place where families can come and just breathe for just a minute despite the craziness of life. In that dream, there has always been “story time”. A time when life would slow down for just a few minutes and children would slip away in a dream world of books we are quickly losing in this crazy world we live in.
This summer, Alicia decided it was time to make this happen. This week we are rolling into week number three of story time at the coffee shop. Here are a couple of pictures that were so graciously shared with us by one of our sweetest customers. Thanks guys for sharing them!
This is how storytime works at the shop… You meet the love of your life, get married and have children. When they get about “this big”, you bring them to Queen Bee Coffee Company on Thursdays for storytime for “Miss Alicia” to read books to them. Don’t forget that Thursdays are $2 Cookies & Milk which happens year round too! When they are small, you bring them at 10:00am. They “sit” (sometimes they never really “sit”) and listen to books on the porch so they can fidget when they get restless and it’s all ok. All the while you rest in a chair on the porch chatting softly with your friends… VERY close by. Disclaimer: No leaving kids, we love them and all but they might be sold if left at the shop! If the first part about having children happened longer ago, your kids are probably “medium sized” by now. In this case, you would come at 2pm and listen to The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe. They meet inside on the big comfy couch because they are old enough to sit still and listen. The first week they read chapters 1 & 2, last week 3 & 4 and this week…. drumroll please…. YES! Chapters 5 & 6! When this book is done, another great chapter book will be read.
That’s what “story time” is all about.
Come join us, it’s a fun time for all!
I have wanted to sit and tell you about all the incredible things going on in our lives right now with this business. (I’d tell you about all the stuff not about this business if you’d like but that might be too much too soon!) We have so many people come up and offer their hands in support that it has become almost impossible to wrap our minds around it all. Just last night, or rather, yesterday afternoon, we had an “open house” for some family and friends who have helped out with various stages of this venture so far. It was simply our way to say, “Let us serve these special people first before anyone else.” We tried to thank everyone but pretty much just stood there and mumbled and cried for a few minutes and some discernable words were understood but not much else. Honestly, it was mostly understandable but there was a lot of crying going on. We have been so blessed by so many people so far! It has been amazing to see people come into our lives that we never knew before and offer to help in ways that were SO needed. Thank you all!
Today is surreal. It is the day before we open something we have dreamed about for years. We should be scared to death – at least I think we should be – but we aren’t. We should be as nervous as a long-tail cat in a room full of rocking chairs – but we aren’t. It is so crazy! We had an owner of a very successful Henry County business tell us last weekend, “You don’t look nervous or tired enough to be about to open a business.” (or something loosely interpreted like that) Trust us, we ARE tired but we are super excited about what this business can mean for so many people. Thank you for making this a reality. We are so very thankful we get to do this.
So I am posting and Alicia is working on getting ready for tomorrow….. when she finds out, I’ll be in trouble. Don’t tell her, please. 🙂
My phone just went off again with a “please bring me this too” text.
We are very excited to let you know we have launched our Kickstarter campaign. It is a great way for you to partner with Queen Bee Coffee and make a difference in McDonough and around the world.