Slain Yet Soaring: New Strides For Sunergos
Who Else Is Excited About a Slayer in Louisville?
For most, a conversation about Kentucky doesn’t conjure images of chic coffee shops and young connoisseurs sipping espresso. Things like horse racing, fried chicken, and college basketball have obscured the complex identity of the Bluegrass State, but there’s actually a bit more to it. As a fledgling Louisvillian, newly arrived from the West Coast, I’ll confess arrogance and admit that my expectations of Kentucky’s coffee scene weren’t high. I wondered, "What could Louisville have on San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, Vancouver, or Los Angeles?" But to my surprise and delight, the quaint collection of coffee shops around here is really taking flight.
And with the addition of a new cafe, the community continues its climb to higher heights.
Sunergos Slayin' It
Sunergos Coffee has been a cornerstone in local coffee culture since Brian Miller and Matthew Huested opened the first of their three espresso bars in 2004. As a micro-roastery with a macro-reputation, Sunergos has made a splash, even outside of Louisville. At this year’s Coffee Fest Chicago, Sunergos’ own Kenny Smith took second place in the latte art competition (with this pour). And now, with the opening of their third cafe, Sunergos brings the legendary Slayer espresso machine to Kentuckiana.
Pour-over brewing demonstrations are in the works, but this location is centered around one trusty elixir: espresso.
The Slayer offers baristas intuitive control of pressure during the brew process and has been praised for extracting tasty espresso from single origin beans, which tend to be less hardy than their blended brethren. The emergence of pressure profiling has paralleled a reinvigorated passion for experiencing the unique qualities of beans from single origins, and Sunergos has joined the parade.
The 3rd Wave of Sunergos Hits Downtown
Their offerings are simple, yet intentionally selected and carefully prepared. The diminutive shop — a small, high-ceilinged room with little counter space and no chairs — boasts a menu with three espresso options, all typical configurations of espresso with milk, a limited stock of syrups, and a handful of teas. Many of us have already made our pilgrimage, and can speak highly of the espresso, cappuccino, and iced mocha (shaken, not stirred). For patrons who are thirsty for a cup of drip, the staff recommends either a cup from the batch brewer or an Americano. Pour-over brewing demonstrations are in the works, but this location is centered around one trusty elixir: espresso. And with the Slayer on their side, Sunergos isn’t likely to disappoint.
Welcome, Sunergos number three. I’m downing a demitasse in your honor.
Have you been to the new Sunergos location yet? What were your impressions? Or, tell us about your favorite Slayer experience in another shop in the comments below!
Sunergos’ new espresso bar is located at 231 South 5th Street in downtown Louisville, Kentucky. Images used with permission by eMarie Photography of Louisville, KY.
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$53.00Hario's stainless steel water kettle, the V60 Buono, has been spotted popping up in coffee houses and the kitchens of baristas for some time now. A detailed search on the web will reveal, for the moment at least, that the Buono seems to be widely accepted as the most useful pouring kettle available. What makes this kettle so popular amongst pour-over enthusiasts? Several reasons stand out.
First, the thin pouring spout enables greater pouring precision as well as a slower, more consistent and controlled rate of pour, both of which are very helpful in achieving a precise, prolonged extraction.
Second, the stainless steel construction and large 1 liter capacity contribute toward keeping up the brew temperature for the duration of the entire brew cycle.
Third, the ergonomics involved in the design of the kettle help to make using it much easier. This may not seem like much, but if you're brewing large batches of coffee and pouring for three or more minutes per batch, doing several batches of coffee will quickly become a chore if your kettle doesn't cooperate with you.
Combine all of these facets with the fact that the Buono is manufactured by Hario, a very popular name in the coffee-brewing community, and the kettle's popularity is easily understood. For best results, combine the Buono with a V60 Dripper or Chemex to get a truly exceptional cup of coffee.
Hario Skerton grinder is handy for manual home and travel grinding, it can also be slightly more cumbersome for an extended road trip where only a small amount of grinding will be done (for a more detailed comparison of the two grinders, check out this blog post: Hario Skerton vs. Mini Mill). For those trips (or homes) where a minimal amount of grinding is needed, the Hario Mini Mill Slim is the perfect grinding solution. The Mini Mill employs adjustable conical ceramic burrs for grinding any of the wide range of grinds employed in today’s coffee market. It can effortlessly handle 24 grams of anything from fine espresso to a coarse French Press setting. Because of its lightweight (0.5 lbs) and sleek plastic body, the Mini Mill easily fits into small carrying bags and suitcases without adding a lot of extra weight. This, in conjunction with the Aerobie AeroPress coffee maker, has the propensity to make excellent coffee anywhere hot water and fresh beans are available.
The Hario Mini Mill is a traveling coffee enthusiast’s dream come true.... and with its ability to grind to the fine quality needed for espresso, it can be paired with a hand-held travel espresso maker such as the mypressi TWIST (and an excellent choice of beans) to achieve a quality rivaling the product found in many high-end espresso machines. Whether the need is grinding beans for a french press, Aeropress, or mypressi, the Mini Mill Slim is the perfect travel solution.
For most companies it's hard to find motivation for pushing out new products if you find yourself on top already. This is not, however, the case with La Marzocco. The Italian based espresso machine manufacturer continues to push the envelop when it comes to innovations in espresso machine technology. The newest line from La Marzocco continues their progression in the specific areas of temperature stability and pressure profiling. We've discussed the Strada Electronic Paddle version in detail in our Strada EP blog post and listing for the 2 Group Strada EP. The Strada Mechanical Paddle employs technology similar to the Mechanical Paddles on other La Marzocco models but with a few new features including individual pressure gauges, digital PID control, and dedicated group boilers.