Those serious about coffee will find their nirvana at The Grounds of Alexandria over the coming months. The Grounds means business and the roastery’s equipment alone speaks for itself. The cafe keeps two dual Probats on the premises, which roast 12 kilograms of beans at the one time, as well as a 6-kilogram commercial machine, which produces the correct level of thermodynamics and consistency. There is even a cold-drip brewing apparatus that was hand-blown in Japan, using Nihonto-grade glass quality (out of every 11 pieces made, only one passes the manufacturer’s quality test).
However, despite packing some impressive machinery, The Grounds is the first to assert that while coffee is certainly a contentious game, it need not mystify. Armed with the right knowledge, it’s possible to enjoy a great cup of coffee even at home – whether you’re working a plunger, filter or espresso machine.
This autumn, the cafe and roastery is spilling the beans on what it takes to siphon a quality drop. The Grounds’ much-commended barista, Jack Hanna, will teach you how to make (and appreciate) great coffee one step at a time, fancy equipment or not.
“I think for a lot of people, the process of coffee roasting is a bit of a mystery – it’s almost an ancient recipe concocted somewhere in a dungeon!” says Hanna. “We want to show people that this isn’t so and invite them to experiment – as this is exactly how we learnt.”
Held in The Grounds’ research facility, the team are running two workshops – ‘Latte Art and Basic Barista Skills’ and ‘Roasting and Cupping’ – on Saturdays from March until June at 3.30pm. Learn about the importance of a quality ingredient (the bean), the roasting process and the preparation.
“We believe good coffee is accessible and like to be transparent about what we do. We want people to come in and blow up some milk with us, trial what they like and what they don’t like.”
Classes run for approximately 60 to 90 minutes and are $80 per person. Spaces are limited to 10 people per class, so book your spot soon.
Latte Art and Basic Barista Skills
March 9, 3.30pm
May 11, 3.30pm
June 8, 3.30pm
Roasting and Cupping
March 23, 3.30pm
May 25, 3.30pm
June 22, 3.30pm