Thursday, July 13, 2017

Colorado Companies to Watch - Winner 2017

At the heart of Colorado Companies to Watch is an awards program to honor second-stage companies for the critical role they play in our state and community economies. These companies are often flying under the radar of recognition. CCTW‘s collaborative model is also a powerful vehicle to energize Colorado’s entrepreneurial community.
Each year-long program is designed to rally around second-stage organizations throughout the state and the business communities that serve as their champions, nominators and underwriters. After an intense application and selection process, a gala dinner is held to celebrate the winners and their supporters.

AND! We won the top 50 2017 Award!

these photos are from the awards gala this past month in Denver, CO.  We had the best time hanging out with our wonderful crew and celebrating our distinction for all of our hard work.   Things like this only come about from the hard work of many people and the support of a greate community like Pueblo, Colorado.

Thank you so much for the opportunity to do what we love to do.

Wine Batch #2

Wine Barrel Batch #2 is now Available!
We started with a chardonnay barrel from the Winery at Holy Cross Abbey.  We poured organic Ethiopian coffee into the barrel and let it age for 14 weeks.  This batch we also experimented with rolling the barrel out into the sun to allow the barrel to sweat wine into the beans.   In the hot Pueblo sun you could smell the wine barrel from 10 feet.

After 14 weeks, we roasted the coffee and packaged it into hand signed and numbered specialty barrel.  Only 460 of these were created.  The coffee itself has a beautiful full fruit flavor with a distinct oak finish.  This batch is very unique in the flavors and very different from the prior batch. 

Check it out on the store and get a barrel for home!

Cheers! -Mike

Friday, June 9, 2017

Barrel Aged Coffee Series - Wine Barrel from the Winery at Holy Cross Abbey

this has been a labor of love for the past several months.   Several months a go a friend named Eric Miller stopped by the coffee house with a whiskey barrel from distillery 291 in Colorado Springs.  He suggested we try to age green coffee in the barrel and see what happened.  I was skeptical at first, but I filled the barrel with 30lbs of green coffee and waited. I would smell the opening every week or so and at about 14 weeks I decided to roast the coffee up.  What we found was an amazine Whiskey aroma and flavor that exploded the senses.  We released the limited edition coffee and sold out in 3 weeks.  
Batch 2 was another whiskey aged coffee. It too sold out in 3 weeks.  I was surprised by the amazing response and the amazing flavor.  So, I started thinking about what else I could use.  I found a perfect match with the wine barrels from our local Winery in Canon City.  When you visit Southern Colorado you simply must get to the Abbey. It has the most beautiful grounds in the area...and the wine is simply superb.  The head wine maker, Jeff was gracious enough to save some barrels for me.  
This first batch of Wine Barrel Aged coffee is from a Cabernet Wine Barrel.  The coffee I selected to age is a Colombia Organic coffee.  I am proud to tell you that the coffee has an exquisite fruity flavor with a very smooth oaky finish.  My friend Dave Ray (SRC's Chief Growth Officer) said that this is the best coffee he has ever had in his whole life!  Always prone to excitement but never to declare love quickly I agree with his assessment.  

Limited quantities.  Super fun to make. Enjoy.

Monday, December 14, 2015

New Website!

Dave Ray, Jessica Hartkop and Mike Hartkop are working on the verbiage for the new SRC website! With any luck we will have a new and more awesome design launched in the first quarter of 2016!!!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

New Haven is old!

These federal buildings out here are a big deal. They are very stately and well positioned. Pueblo has our own federal building too of course, but it's not being used as one now. 
I think New Haven is beautiful. I found myself a cup of coffee from a very nice little cafe called "blue state coffee". It is right across the street from this little school called Yale. Amazing. Yale. 
Today I am picking Dave up from the union station and going for a drive to visit 1/2 dozen stores that carry Solar Roast Coffee. I'm excited to meet the people and see the stores. 

What a journey!


It has good beer. Switchback is legit. Unfiltered, cloudy and as red as my brothers hair. Quite delicious. The locals here say it is the water that makes things taste so great. I can't disagree. Solar Roast coffee sells really well at Natural Provisions and we all know that coffee is mostly water. Meaning the quality of h2o imparts such a flavor. 

Buy some water filters and a water softener. Get some SRC and brew it. Travel to Burlington and try it with the water here. It's super sweet. 

Apparently we are leaf peepers here. It's a really big deal for the folks south of Vermont to drive up to watch the changing leaves. I can't believe how beautiful it is. I love this region. 

I love that I get to travel the nation and teach people about Solar Roast. We truly are doing something that nobody else has done with coffee. 

Love the dream. I am. 

Friday, October 9, 2015

Greetings from Maine!

It is beautiful country in Maine. I am amazed by the warm response Solar Roast Coffee has received in the Northern Most (lower 48) state. The people are so very friendly. Dave and I flew into Boston and drove north to start the first leg of the 7 day New England campaign. On the first day we visited 
Portland and ate their famous potato doughnuts. I was refused service at a lame coffee house for wanting a 3oz pull of espresso and found myself wandering looking for another cafe to serve me coffee. Luckily I found some before the world ended. 
I had a beautiful drive up to Porter Maine and visited John at Good Health grocery. This is the most awesome little shop. Small town, great soup and the friendliest owner. 

Last night I had some amazing seafood for dinner. The scallops are the best I've ever had! The Lopster Trap was fantastic. This morning I am enjoying some delicious toast at an aptly named Toast'in Waterville, ME. Next stop is Uncle Deans good groceries for the first demo in New England. I'm excited by this journey and the friendly folks up here. You know we really are one big family, America. Sometimes I think we forget that. Especially in election year(s). 

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Pumpkins and skateboards

 It's a remarkable thing to have such a fun day. Jessi and I spent the morning organizing the house for my sister in law's baby shower. We had a great autumn theme with pumpkins and autumn flowers. 
While the ladies were baby showering, my brother David and I took Henry out to the county. We took a great walk through the pumpkin patch. David and Henry both picked out some great pumpkins. Mauro farms out at 36th lane (I think) is great. The owners gave us two apples becaus Henry couldn't wait for check out. 
After the pumpkin patch we stopped in to Solar Roast for a cup of coffee. Izzy made me a fantastic latte.

Our buddy, Big Deal Bemis joined us for some shenanigans to celebrate my brothers first born.  Look for the Big Deal Bemis Blend in store. It is very limited, and highly erratic. 
I also skateboarded for the first time in years. Thbakbuou John O. for giving me the opportunity. 

 All in all an unexpectedly fantastic day. My family is healthy and growing. The heater is on for autumn. And I am about to enjoy a pumpkin ale. 

Friday, October 2, 2015

I love autumn

Autumn.  It just comes when you need it doesn't it?! I'm so happy that the evenings have turned the corner in terms of heat. My wife, Jessica, brought out the quilt to keep us warm. 
I love the pumpkin lattes and pumpkin white mochas that are selling quickly. Chai teas are picking up steam. Autumn just makes me feel like a warm cafe latte. 
Last weekend jessi and I went out to the county (a magical place east of Pueblo) to purchase our pumpkins and corn. We decorated the front porch with the drying stalks. I love the change of seasons. My precocious son, Henry, just loves the line up of pumpkins. He believes them all to be his personal toys!  I don't blame him. They are too fun!
In any case I welcome everyone to share a cup of coffee with me on these cool mornings. Stop in to the cafe! Or order online and enjoy. Come visit Pueblo. It really does Autumn well. 

Friday, September 25, 2015

I love vinyl

Good evening friendly SRC lovers,
I've been working so hard on the coffee business for the past several years that I think I've neglected to share some other loves of mine. I love vinyl records. It's been a complete dream of mine since high school to collect and own all the Smashing Pumpkins on vinyl along side all of the Beatles vinyl. I always loved music and have spent thousands of hours searching and collecting my favorite tunes. 
Over the years I loved Sam Goody, CD Centre, Virgin Records, Tower Records, Ranch Records and more recently Beat Pharm. 
 What I've noticed is that my favorite shops have closed and moved online. It makes me wish for more of the tangible 1990s and 80s. Music was physical. It spun on a record player or in a CD player.  I enjoy the hunt. Flipping through bins. Ever wondering what will turn up next. 

Perhaps out of a market demand, or my own absolute love for sharing what I like...I've placed my first order of brand new vinyl records for my little shop at 3rd and Main. Solar Roast Coffee will soon have a small selection of new and used vinyls. I'm working with my best friend Dave Ray of Beat Pharm fame to procure the finest classic vinyls to augment the new records. 
I hope people enjoy flipping through the records nearly as much as I have enjoyed looking over lists of available albums. 

Coming in mid October. 

What's your favorite record? What do you want on vinyl?