If you find yourself in Milan

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Along with the huge Expo Milan, this year a new big idea was born. Mercato Metropolitano is an outdoor farmers market near the station of Porta Genova, in Via Valenza 2, in Navigli. It will remain there until October coming, and it is a great opportunity for everyone visiting the city to spend their leisure around the market’s stalls.

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It is 15,000 square meters big and the visitor can find local products of small production, of craftsmanship and farming, most of them artisanal and/or organic. Street food delicacies, fruits and vegetables, bread, patisserie, even flowers, beers and wine, and a coffee cluster! An open air cinema, a playground fro kids and also live cooking lessons are some of the activities one can join daily.

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I spent there some time, not only as a visitor but also as a participant /entrepreneur. Taf coffee meets La Marzocco and cafe Taglio, located in Milan, a great collaboration of the three to take over the espresso bar of the mercato. Taf coffee created and roasted a special house blend for the Mercato Metropolitano. The coffee friends passing by, can also taste Rosebud blend, single estate coffees from Taf’s direct relationship program.

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In the in-house micro-roastery, I was the first to roast some amazing Geisha beans from Panama, so they can be served in the brew bar for one week. Following La Marzocco’s initiative, every week a special roaster from around the world will join the mercato and roast its green coffee in order to serve it in the brew or espresso bar. I find it a great idea, good coffee made from professionals need to be shared in the people that loves it more!. See you in Milan!

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Josh et la fin d’été grec

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The calendar shows 17th of October 2014, in Athens temperature reaches 28 Celsius (in Greek islands is a bit higher). Greek summer is not finished just yet.  For the last years Josh lives in Mykonos – from early May until late October, while spends the rest of the year between Tokyo and Zurich. He is a passionate believer in quality and invests his time into writing his blog mesubium where he shares techniques, recipes and ideas about gastronomy. When I asked why there is anything about his biography in his blog, he answered that he is not interested in receiving any recognition or interaction from the readers; he only likes sharing information about food, wine and taste. It is a blog about the meaning of food through the way of living. In mesubium some times he also writes fair critics about restaurants, so he doesn’t want to reveal his name. People sometimes are not ready to accept strict critic on a restaurant with a Michelin star!

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 I visited him at home to say goodbye and we had the chance to discuss about a new concept coffee shop he is interested in developing. His home kitchen with high standard equipment is similar to a professional one and of course the espresso machine is GS 3 Marzocco.  We tasted Ethiopia Sidamo Guji Garde 1, six days after roasting by Taf. This freshly roasted coffee gave us a marvelous cup profile: sweet, creamy with citrus acidity and black tea finish. I made it using 19 gr. on a temperature of  92,5 Celsius degrees on GS3.

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We enjoyed our shots after a vegetarian- vegan lunch that Josh had prepared as he knows my preferences in vegan food. Along with the coffee we also enjoyed the house’s amazing panorama, at the edge of the hill in Psarou gulf, the endless serene Aegean sea. Unforgettable shots in this astonishing environment with the quiet view fed us with ideas about Josh’s future coffee shop.

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The great closure of the evening came with an old Yellow Chartreuse, the famous liqueur made by monks using 130 herbs and flowers. It was named after the monastery at Chartreuse Mountains in France.  Josh tried an old trick to take out the cork: “The cork made me fish it with a metal rod, a handy tool, I used a 1mm inox spear as the cork tried to slide into the bottle. This is a very useful technique to grab a falling cork. This yellow Chartreuse was marvelous with a unctuous floral viscosity – a perfect bottle of delicious medicinal sweet digestif”, writes on mesubium.

La fin d’été grecque. A beautiful day to end Greek summer.