Some coffee shops, for a variety of good reasons, align with one particular coffee roaster. We have taken the approach of working with a few roasters and have enjoyed the diversity and flexibility that this has given us. Our current roasters occupy quite different tiers in the specialty coffee world and that too is quite interesting. So here is a shout out to these critical suppliers:
We love summer and do feel a litle short changed this year. Oh well.... We did thoroughly enjoy the bounty of local farms and markets throughout the season and of course even now as we move into fall there is still a nice range of produce to enjoy. We are fans of the late tomato crop although catching a perfect fruit at its peak is increasingly tricky. Our Global Tastes with Local Produce Dinner was very well received and it seems we managed to not make a mess of the lovely produce we managed to find.
The organic herb, vegetable and flower garden that Holly constructed at the back of the Mt Lebanon Caffe came into its own during May. Lots of rain mixed with sunshine will do that I guess. The back porch thereby looking rather beautiful in an industrial sort of way. As soon as we could we started using the herbs in various quiches, salads and significantly in our theme dishes. This month we explored Tastes of Israel. A geo-politically complicated and emotionally charged region with fantastic food.
Despite the confusing on again off again Spring weather, we had a fun month at Orbis Caffe.
March is nearly over, we have had our fill of snow, but not of Tastes of India! This huge country has a vast array of regional dishes influenced by the various prevailing religions and histories. Unfortunately a lot of people only get to experience the narrow range of dishes that have become popular in mainstream western Indian restaurants. This is not to say that these dishes are not delicious but rather that they tend to present a limited flavor profile as this is what "plays in Peoria".
Last year we explored lots of European countries and some of the Americas, so when we were deciding how to kick off the new year, we thought of Asia. This was also strongly motivated by Holly who has a particular liking for various Asian cuisines.
We kicked off in January with Vietnam. The fresh flavors and French overtones made the brunches and the dinner quite delightful. We were a bit obsessed with Bahn Mi after the month ended.
Our old website was built quickly and on a base that was quite unstable. We have built a new one with the help of someone a lot more competent and here it is! Hopefully you've been getting some updates in the meantime through Twitter: @orbiscaffe
The overall information will be similar but a little better organized. We couldn't transfer too much from the previous site and lost all the updates on dinners and catering - oh well... We have some pictures we can upload again and will do so in due course.
Thank you as always for your support.
The food theme for this month is "Tastes of America". We have had various people laugh at this and ask us whether we'll be making hamburgers, hot dogs, pizza and the like. This is a bit sad to me but to an extent it validates the choice. We are huge fans of America and in this our first year anniversary month which also coincides with Thanksgiving, we though we would give it a go. There is a wealth of produce to use and a number of distinctive regions and influences that we'll try and explore through the brunches and ending with the dinner which will be on Saturday December 1st.
The Schutte family is heading off for vacation from October 26th to November 4th. We will be a little short staffed and so will have shorter hours. That being said Orbis will have the highly talented John Casamassa in charge so coffee will be great and the place ship shape and Bristol fashion. Sunday Brunch will be limited to quiche, fritatta and our regular food items for the next two weekends. Your continued support and patience over this next week or so will be much appreciated.
August was a fine month. Tastes of Northern Italy brought Osso Bucco, Risotto all a Milanese, fresh made tortelli pasta filled with butternut, Amaretti cookie and Parmigiano to the table along with a collection of buttery, basilly, fontina-ry, asiago-y delight. So yum and so classic.