What Makes A Great Coffee Shop?

Posted by on May 17, 2017 in Uncategorized |

There is no one secret to a successful coffee shop; in fact, most secrets in business boil down to either hard work, extensive experience, or luck or a combination of all three. Coffee shops NY relies on success for this post to mean financially sustainable with an appropriate ROI for the owner, which means not necessarily giving the customer everything they would wish for.

8459809062_94145117b8_oConsistently serving the finest espresso – It is rare in business to discover a product where consistently offering 100% quality is the best commercial decision you can make. In fact, I am the greatest advocate for the 80% is perfect model. But espresso coffee is one of those rare products where consistent 100% quality matters. Customers will walk past ten other competitors to get the best espresso, which is why this factor alone means you don’t need the highly visible, most expensive location. So buy the best espresso coffee machine (3/4 group Italian made with e61 groupheads and set to the right pump and temperature levels), install it with a water purifier and demineralizer, use a conical grinder, and only buy top quality Arabica or Arabica 90%/Robusta 10% freshly roasted beans, and make sure every cup is made by a fully trained barista who is continually seeking the ‘god shot.’

Ergonomics is vital – Make sure the coffee workstation and layout is such that the barista hardly moves their feet in performing all their coffee making duties, and they are not competing for the space with other staff members. High volume coffee sales are the foundation stone of every coffee shop, so make sure this workstation is perfectly laid out with easy access to underneath bins, bean storage, and bar fridge milk, having the right height benchtop with easy access to cups, grinder, accessories, and reachable overhead storage of supplies. The best setups also have a small inbuilt sink to allow for quick and easy ongoing cleaning. Also, place the cash register on the front counter in close proximity to the barista’s workstation. This allows the barista to hear the customer orders and get a head start on making them in the busy times, while allowing the barista to work alone in an efficient way in the very slow times.

Use loyalty cards – I resisted using these for a long time … but they really do work. Make sure it is a quality card that will last the wear and tear and look good in a customer’s wallet. Nothing better than seeing a new customer’s face light up when you give them a buy seven get the eighth one free loyalty card, but tick off six of them so that on their very next purchase they get a free one. Cheapest customer acquisition ever.

Promote multiple sales – A coffee shop will never make enough money to pay the bills from coffee sales alone. Coffee may be the prime motivator for customers coming to the business, but they must leave with multiple sales if you are going to be successful. As a target, coffee should be no more than 40% of your weekly sales and two item sales per customer transaction means you are getting it about right. So make sure the traditional coffee accompaniments (muffins, cookies, cakes) are close by at the point of sale, and the coffee shop offers cold food, cold drinks, and hot food to ensure the best chance of multiple sales.

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Remembering A Loved One

Posted by on May 17, 2017 in Uncategorized |

Accept that loss is a basic part of our life cycle. Whatever is born must die. Whatever grows must decay. These are universal laws. We tend to forget that these physical bodies are mortal. Everything we see around us will one-day decay and cease to be. That includes all plants, animals, people, buildings, cities, the planet earth, the sun and even the galaxy. Everything in the physical universe is temporary. When this fact is understood and accepted, we will begin to seek other, inner sources of security and happiness.

Confront death: We need to ask, “what is death?” What is the nature of that energy, that power, that consciousness which, when it was in that body, caused it to think, speak, move, love, feel and create? Now that it is gone, there is a mass of cells that will soon decompose. What is life? What is its purpose? A number of us have been forced by the death of the loved one to investigate these questions. Death forces us to look deeper into the nature and purpose of life. Reexamine our life values and goals: Contact with death awakens us to the fact that someday we too will die. This generates a number of questions. Will we have fulfilled our life purpose? Why have we come here to the earth? Why have we taken this physical body? Is our life part of some greater process? If so, 8127410463_9e3f04af2b_owhat does it require of us? How can we live our lives more in harmony with that purpose?

Answering these questions might motivate us to change our life style, live a more meaningful existence, improve our character, purify our love, or investigate the deeper truths of life. We may also discover that life is more meaningful when we value others and their needs.

Someone you know may be experiencing grief – perhaps the loss of a loved one, perhaps another type of loss – and you want to help. Victoria Funerals can only do so much to take the edge off the grief and promote closure. The fear of making things worse may encourage you to do nothing. Yet you do not wish to appear to be uncaring.

Remember that it is better to try to do something, inadequate as you may feel, than to do nothing at all. Don’t attempt to sooth or stifle the emotions of the griever. Tears and anger are an important part of the healing process. Grief is not a sign of weakness. It is the result of a strong relationship and deserves the honour of strong emotion.

When supporting someone in their grief the most important thing is to simply listen. Grief is a very confusing process, expressions of logic are lost on the griever. The question “tell me how you are feeling” followed by a patient and attentive ear will seem like a major blessing to the grief stricken. Be present, show that you care, listen.

Your desire is to assist your friend down the path of healing. They will find their own way down that path, but they need a helping hand, an assurance that they are not entirely alone on their journey. It does not matter that you do not understand the details, your presence is enough.

Risk a visit, it need not be long. The mourner may need time to be alone but will surely appreciate the effort you made to visit. Do some act of kindness. There are always ways to help. Run errands, answer the phone, prepare meals, mow the lawn, care for the children, shop for groceries, meet incoming planes or provide lodging for out of town relatives. The smallest good deed is better than the grandest good intention.

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Your Coffee & What It Says About You?

Posted by on Apr 21, 2017 in Uncategorized |

Once seen as the height of sophistication (in 1964, perhaps), the combination of espresso and foamed milk has failed to see off the competition from the latte, the flat white and the drip filter (the johnny-come-lately of the coffee world). with so many starting their day with a coffee hit, what does it say about you when you order from brooklyn Coffee shops?

Skinny latte
The Diet Coke of the hot beverage world and the default choice of the slightly harassed mother/career woman. It promises the maternal comfort of warm milk and a gentle bump of caffeine but without the calories. The joke is of course on them as the evidence now suggests that whole milk is less fattening than skimmed milk (it’s to do with the way sugar is absorbed, apparently). All those wasted years!

Regular latte

The choice of the well-respected man who will never rise beyond middle management. Once opted for the gingerbread version – a bit silly, really! But does enjoy an occasional strawberry yum-yum.

Soya flat white8459809062_94145117b8_o
The tell-tale sign of the lactose-intolerant, gluten-spurning, orthorexic control freak. If you do happen to suffer from any of these modern afflictions, the dignified order is black coffee.

Almond milk flat white

As above, but also has a large Instagram following, a line of yoga-wear and a bestselling cook book.
Erm… can I just have… a normal coffee… white two sugars… oh fiddlesticks what is it called these days?
You can hardly blame the upstanding pensioner for their moment of panic as the milk machines hiss and the time-pushed East European workers hammer spent grounds from the espresso pods and fail to understand their order. Unfortunately, “coffee” ceased to exist in approximately 2003. What you’re after is “white filter” (a sort of brownish dishwater) or “white Americano” (espresso topped with too much water.)

Instant coffee
“Builder’s coffee” may be hard to find outside greasy spoons and church coffee mornings, but when a typical morning cup involves someone writing your name on a paper cup in felt tip, there’s a lot to be said for a stimulant that can be prepared in five seconds for about 2 cents. A discreet kettle and a jar of Gold Blend is the choice of the deadline-surfer with their priorities in check.

Mango frappuccino
If you are eight-years-old, fine. If you are any older, please examine your life priorities.

Double espresso
The choice of the intellectual sophisticate.

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What Happens When You Grieve?

Posted by on Apr 21, 2017 in Uncategorized |

Grief is about more than your feelings—it will show up in how you think. You may disbelieve this person actually died. You may have episodes of thinking like this even long after they died. Your mind may be confused, your thinking muddled. You may find it difficult to concentrate on just about everything. Or you may be able to focus your attention but all you can focus on is the one who died, or how they died, or your life together before they died.

Physical responses are also to be expected. You may experience tightness in your throat, heaviness across your chest, or pain around your heart. Your stomach may be upset, along with other intestinal disturbances. You may have headaches, hot flashes, or cold chills. You may be dizzy at times, or tremble more than usual, or find yourself easily startled. Some people find it hard to get their breath. You may, in addition, undergo changes in your behavior. You may sleep less than you used to and wake up at odd hours. Or you may sleep more than normal. You may have odd dreams or frightening nightmares. You may become unusually restless, moving from one activity to another, sometimes not finishing one thing before moving on to the next. Or you may sit and do nothing for long periods.5580394332_a5b20a0cd8_o

Some people engage in what’s called “searching behavior”—you look for your loved one’s face among a crowd of people, for instance, even though you know they’ve died. After a funeral is planned at funeral services in Melbourne, you can guarantee that you will be able to gain some kind of physical closure. You may become attached to things you associate with your loved one, like wearing an article of their clothing or carrying a keepsake that belonged to them. Or you may wish to avoid all such reminders.

Many grieving people want to spend more time alone. Sometimes they’re drawn to the quiet and safety they experience there, and sometimes it’s a way of dodging other people. Even venturing out to the grocery store, a shopping mall, or a worship service can feel uncomfortable. There are some people, however, who want to be around others even more than before. You may find that you’re jealous of people around you who aren’t grieving. You may envy what they have that you don’t. You may resent how much they take for granted when you now realize that nothing should ever be taken for granted. You may become critical in ways that are unlike you. Fortunately, this shift is usually temporary.

Some grieving people report unusual happenings that are not easy to describe yet seem very real. You may be going about your daily life and suddenly have a sense of your loved one’s presence. Some people report having auditory or visual experiences related to this person. At times the loved one offers a message during a dream or time of meditation. Try not to worry if something like this should happen to you once in a while. Such experiences are more common than you might think. Research also indicates that people’s responses during times of personal loss will be influenced by how they’re raised, their genetic make-up, and society’s expectations. Consequently, some people are naturally more feeling-oriented as they grieve, while others are more oriented toward using their thinking processes. Some respond outwardly, while others keep to themselves. Some want to have a close network of friends around them, and others prefer to be independent.

Ordinary, healthy grief has many possible faces and can express itself in many different ways. You are your own person, with your own personality, your own life experiences, your own relationship with the one who died, and your own understanding of life and death. So you should not expect a “one-size-fits-all grief” that will suit you. You’re too unique for that. Despite your individual uniqueness, you’ll probably discover an overall pattern to your grief as it progresses. It often begins with a time of shock and numbness, especially if the death was sudden. Everything seems unreal. This is usually followed by a time when pain sets in. Sadness, loneliness, helplessness, and fear may come over you in powerful waves. Anger and guilt may do the same, and continue for awhile. In time there comes a slowly growing acceptance of what has happened, but it’s not necessarily a happy acceptance.

It’s common to feel listless and lifeless, discouraged and sometimes depressed. Other strong emotions can still pop up. This is the winter of your grief—a long, slow, dormant period. In actuality, something is beginning to grow, but it’s hidden deep underground. A time of gradual reawakening eventually occurs, though you can’t always predict when. Energy begins to return. So does hope. Finally there comes a time of renewed life. You’re not the same person you were before—you’ll be different, having been changed by this experience, having grown. You’ll forge a new relationship with the one who died, a relationship that transcends time. This entire process is very fluid. It may not feel very orderly. These time periods will flow into one another almost imperceptibly. But when you look back, you’ll recognize what’s happened: by going all the way through your grief, you’ve taken the path toward your healing.

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