• Community Cash for Schools® Program

    by Jordan Feeney | Apr 20, 2016

    Throughout the history of Community Coffee Company, education, self-betterment and entrepreneurship have proven to be profound parts of our business. We've always had a sense of community which is the very basis of our name. That architectural fabric that consistently produces a delicious cup of coffee also created an educational program. Now in its 27th year, this program is woven into the landscape of the communities we serve.

    C4SRefresh_400x413_DLocal public and private schools have earned well over $6 million by saving UPCs through our Community Cash for Schools® program. The program supports and cultivates future generations by allowing educators to direct funds to programs and projects that best serve our youth. Schools are free to allocate funds in the best way they see fit, which has opened many doors for hundreds of schools. Most schools participate in pursuit of funds to support technology improvements, upgrades in textbooks and playground equipment as well as other activities that support children’s exploration of learning. However, we have seen some other outside-the-norm, yet innovative, ways to spend the money, including building a chicken coop.

    This program thrives when communities of businesses, parents, students and educators work together to collect UPCs. Each Proof of Purchase is worth 10 cents, which adds up fast when you have a large number of coffee-drinkers on your side. Our roots are firmly planted in future generations and we encourage coffee lovers to soulfully sip their delicious cup of coffee and civically cut the label for their local school in need.

    For more information on our Community Cash for Schools® program, or to register your school as the school’s representative, please visit CommunityCoffee.com/CashforSchools.


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  • Spotlight: Chef Mark Quitney

    by John Knotz | Apr 14, 2016

    WYES New Orleans and Community Coffee Company are pleased to announce Chef Mark Quitney of Pelican Lobby Bar in the Sheraton New Orleans as the 2015 Cooking with Community® Coffee Contest winner!

    Chef Mark


    Chef Mark Quitney won for his Black & Gold to 
    the Super Bowl Doberge which featured layers of lemon curd & chocolate mousse, buttercream icing covered in a chocolate and lemon glaze burnt cream featuring Community® coffee. 

    Check out the winning recipe below:





    Lemon Curd:
    • 3 lemons
    • 3 large eggs
    • 3/4 cup sugar
    • 4 ounces (1 stick unsalted butter), quartered

    Cake:
    • 8 ounces (2 sticks) + 2 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
    • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • 6 large eggs
    • 1 3/4 cups sugar
    • 3/4 cup milk

    Icing:
    • 4 ounces (1 stick) softened unsalted butter
    • 4 cups confectioners' sugar
    • 1/4 cup lemon juice
    • 2 drops yellow food coloring

    Preparation

    1. For the lemon curd: Grate the zest from 1 lemon and place in a medium heatproof bowl. Juice enough lemons to yield 1/2 cup lemon juice and add to zest with eggs and sugar. Place bowl with eggs over (not in) a pan of simmering water and whisk every 5 minutes until thick, about 20 minutes.

    2. Transfer curd to a food processor. With machine running, add butter, one piece at a time, processing for 15 seconds between additions and making sure the butter is incorporated before adding the next portion. Process until curd is completely smooth. Scrape down sides of bowl and blend another 15 seconds.

    3. Transfer hot curd to a glass or plastic container. Lay plastic wrap directly on top of the curd's surface and cover with a lid. Refrigerate for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

    4. For the cake: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9-inch spring form pan. Wrap the bottom in aluminum foil and place on a baking sheet.

    5. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt and set aside. Stir vanilla into 8 ounces plus 2 tablespoons melted butter and set aside.

    6. In a large heatproof bowl, whisk together eggs and sugar. Place over (not in) a pot of barely simmering water. Whisking constantly, heat the mixture until it is warm to the touch, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and whip on high until cool and tripled in volume, about 3 minutes.

    7. Reduce mixer speed to medium low and drizzle in the melted butter-vanilla mixture. By hand, fold in 1/3 of the flour mixture followed by 1/2 of the milk. Repeat, ending with flour. Transfer batter to prepared pan and bake until a toothpick tests clean, about 1 hour. Let cool in the pan 5 minutes, then invert onto a wire rack. Unclasp the spring form pan sides and carefully remove the ring, and allow the cake to cool completely with the pan bottom still in place.

    8. Remove the pan bottom from the cake and divide it into 4 equal layers. Wash and dry the spring form pan and use it to assemble the cake. Lightly coat the bottom and sides of the pan with cooking spray. Place two (20-inch-long) pieces plastic wrap in pan so entire bottom and sides are covered, allowing ends of plastic to hang over sides of pan.

    9. Place 1 cake layer in spring form pan and top with 1/3 lemon curd, leaving a 1/2-inch border of bare cake around the edge. Repeat with the remaining cake layers and lemon curd. Cover the top of the cake with the plastic wrap overhang (or another piece if there isn't enough), and refrigerate 4 hours or overnight.

    10. For the icing: In a large bowl or stand mixer, mix butter and sugar on low speed until combined. Add lemon juice and food coloring and mix on low speed until moistened. Increase speed to medium and beat until creamy, about 2 minutes. Reduce speed to low, add 1 tablespoon warm water, and beat until fully incorporated, about 1 minute more.

    11. Place four (6-inch-wide) strips of parchment paper hanging off the end of the platter. (This will keep the tray clean while frosting. Remove after you've iced.) Remove the plastic wrap from the top of the cake and invert cake onto the serving platter. Unhinge the sides of the spring form pan and remove. Peel off plastic wrap. Ice top and sides of cake. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Cake can be served cold or at room temperature (even better).

    MARK QUITNEY
    Executive Chef


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  • Crossing the Globe to Honor Our Founder

    by Johnny Hoell | Apr 01, 2016
    It all started with one delicious cup of coffee and one determined founder. Founded in 1919, Community Coffee Company celebrates Founder’s Day every year on April 1. This birthday of sorts is celebrated by acknowledging our company’s rich history and enjoying a cup of our Founder’s Blend coffee

    Founder’s Blend is Community Coffee Company’s fourth-generation owner Matt Saurage’s special blend that he developed in honor of our founder, his great-grandfather, Cap Saurage. Founder’s Blend was developed as a medium-dark roast with a sweet, floral aroma, a complex and winey flavor, and a nutty, bold body. With every cup you can taste the semisweet flavors of South America, the rich flavors of Africa, and the smoothness of Brazil.

    A truly complex coffee, our Founder’s Blend highlights the unique taste profile of several regions. The first part of Founder’s blend is a South American coffee grown in Colombia out of special relationships exclusive to Community Coffee Company. We then add two other carefully-selected exceptional coffees from Kenya and Ethiopia in Africa, and round it out with rare flavors from Brazil.

    15Colombia_Retouch3_smallColombia
    South American coffee trees thrive in Colombia’s high altitude and warm weather. The mountainous terrain provides the perfect growing conditions for quality Arabica coffee beans. Colombia is the third highest total producer of coffee in the world, and we are proud to source beans from this region.

    Community Coffee Company has supported the efforts of local coffee growers in this region by funding opportunities for social, economic, environmental and educational development, including developing a school for youth named Hogar Juvenil Campesino Toledito – Henry Norman Saurage III after our founder. Coffee from Colombia has been positioned as one of the finest quality coffees in the world and is a favorite among coffee consumers. Colombia’s coffee has a heavy body, and a smooth, semisweet flavor with hints of dark chocolate and a toasted nut finish. Our relationship with Colombia over the last 13 years and counting produces a great cup of coffee, and even greater opportunities for the region.

    Africa
    Known as the birthplace of coffee, Africa grows some of the most celebrated coffee beans in the world. With its complex flavors, it is easy to see why people enjoy it. Coffee from this region tends to have a medium acidity and lighter body. African coffee farmers cultivate coffee in four different systems, which include wild forest coffee, semi-forest coffee, garden coffee and plantation coffee. The vast biodiversity and economical dependency on agriculture makes Africa a premier spot for coffee growers to produce a great tasting cup of coffee.

    Brazil
    Brazil is the largest coffee producer in the world and the second largest consumer. Brazil provides rich soil and a humid climate for its coffee plants to thrive. Unlike some places, Brazil does not have a high altitude and therefore grows coffee in low-lying fields which produce a sweet, smooth and less acidic flavor. Brazil is known for its full-bodied coffee and Arabica coffee beans, perfect for a cup of Community® coffee.

    What started as a small country store selling coffee is now a thriving company with the best coffee beans from around the world. Community Coffee Company is the largest family-owned and operated coffee brand in America and remains committed to providing a great cup of coffee for our local communities and beyond. From sourcing our beans at coffee farms around the globe, to tasting the finished product at our own kitchen table, it’s all part of our commitment to being the best coffee company in America, every day.

    Find more information about our story here.

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  • Coffee, Cheesecake, Pie … One True Love

    by Johnny Hoell | Mar 31, 2016

    Pie. Cake. And coffee. They’ve always gone well together, and this make-ahead recipe beautifully highlights them all in the same dessert. It’s a perfect treat to make any time you want to excite your taste buds!

    The pie crust couldn’t be simpler. Just mix together three ingredients and press them into the pan. You can choose the chocolate or traditional graham cracker version. The creamy filling shines with subtle coffee notes – both from brewed coffee mixed in with the cheese and from coffee ‘n’ chocolate swirled on top. Also, there’s no last-minute frosting, garnishing or fussing. Make this several days before serving so dessert is completely stress-free.

    And here’s one more thing to love. The new 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (released in Jan. 2016) talks about incorporating moderate daily coffee consumption – about 3-4, 8-oz. cups or up to 400 mg caffeine – into healthy eating patterns. So, go ahead and serve a hot cup along with dessert, too!

    Coffee Cheesecake Pie

    CoffeeCheesecake_VertCropCrust:
    1 cup chocolate wafer crumbs (from about 20 wafers) or graham cracker crumbs
    2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    3 tablespoons butter, melted

    Swirl:
    ¼ cup bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips
    2 tablespoons strongly-brewed Community® coffee

    Filling:
    2 (8-ounce) packages Neufchatel cheese (lower fat than cream cheese), softened
    ½ cup granulated sugar
    ⅓ cup strongly-brewed Community® coffee, cooled
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    2 large eggs

    Preheat oven to 350°F.

    Crust
    Combine wafer crumbs and 2 tablespoons sugar. Add butter and thoroughly mix. Place in 9-inch pie pan sprayed with vegetable cooking spray; evenly press up sides and over bottom. Refrigerate until ready to fill.

    Swirl
    In small microwave-safe measuring cup or bowl, place chocolate chips and 2 tablespoons coffee. Heat coffee to a simmer in microwave; do not boil. Stir until completely smooth. Set aside to cool.

    Filling
    In large mixing bowl, beat Neufchatel cheese and ½ cup sugar until smooth. Add ⅓ cup coffee and vanilla; mix until combined and smooth. Add eggs 1 at a time, mixing on low speed and scraping bowl after each until blended. Pour over reserved crust.

    Drizzle reserved coffee mixture all over filling; gently swirl with a knife tip. Bake in middle of oven for 30-40 minutes or until center is almost set. Let cool completely. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours.

    Cut into 8 slices

    Notes:

    • American Neufchatel cheese has about one-third less fat than regular cream cheese. Though you can use full fat cream cheese, this version lightens the dessert up a bit without sacrificing creamy, satisfying cheesecake texture.
    • To soften Neufchatel cheese, unwrap both packages and microwave on high power 30 seconds or until slightly soft. If it’s too cold, Neufchatel cheese won’t easily blend and small lumps will remain.
    • Crust short-cut: process wafers and sugar in food processor to make fine crumbs; add butter and process until well-mixed.
    • The pie pan will be quite full before baking so carefully place in oven.
    • You certainly can omit the coffee, chocolate swirl … but it adds mocha flavor and immense eye appeal.
    • Cracks in the cheesecake may occur. So? Simply consider them homemade beauty marks!
    • Check out “Dietary Guidelines Committee Gives Coffee Thumbs Up” for more information on coffee, diet and health.

    Beth Witherspoon, MPH, RDN, has a passion for communicating culinary and nutrition information. She is a registered dietitian/nutritionist who consults with Community Coffee Company to help communicate the flavor and health benefits of coffee.


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  • Coffee Through History

    by Johnny Hoell | Mar 16, 2016

    In the Ethiopian highlands, where the legend of Kaldi, the goat herder, originated, coffee trees grow naturally today as they have for centuries. It is said that Kaldi discovered coffee after noticing that his goats, upon eating berries from a certain tree, became spirited. Kaldi dutifully reported his findings to the abbot of the local monastery who made a drink with the berries and discovered that it kept him alert for hours.  Soon the abbot shared his discovery with the other monks, and ever so slowly knowledge of the energizing effects of the berries began to spread around the world. From Asia to Africa, Central to South America, to the islands of the Caribbean and Pacific, all can trace their heritage to the trees in the ancient coffee forests on the Ethiopian plateau.

    The Arabian Peninsula: The Arabs were the first to cultivate coffee and begin its trade.  During the 15th century, coffee was grown in the Yemeni district of Arabia and by the 16th century it was known in Persia, Egypt, Syria and Turkey. Coffee was not only drunk in homes but also in public coffee houses, called ‘qahveh khaneh’, which began to appear in cities across the Near East. Coffee houses soon became the central location for all kinds of social activity. People came together to listen to music, watch performers, play chess and get news updates.  In fact, coffee houses quickly became such an important center for the exchange of information that they were often referred to as 'Schools of the Wise.'

    With thousands of pilgrims visiting the holy city of Mecca each year from all over the world, word of the 'wine of Araby' as the drink was often called, was beginning to spread far beyond Arabia. In an effort to maintain its complete monopoly in the early coffee trade, the Arabians continued to closely guard their coffee production.

    Introduction to Europe: By the 17th century, coffee had made its way to Europe and was becoming popular across the continent. With the coming of coffee to Venice in 1615, the local clergy condemned the beverage as the 'bitter invention of satan.' The controversy was so great that Pope Clement VIII was asked to intervene. Before making a decision, however, he decided to taste the beverage for himself and found the drink so satisfying that he gave it papal approval.

    PRBlogDespite controversy, in the major cities of England, Austria, France, Germany and Holland, coffee houses were quickly becoming centers of social activity and communication. In England 'penny universities' sprang up, so called because for the price of a penny one could purchase a cup of coffee and engage in stimulating conversation.  By the mid-17th century, there were over 300 coffee houses in London, many of which attracted patrons with common interests, such as merchants, shippers, brokers and artists. Many businesses grew out of these specialized coffee houses. Lloyd's of London, for example, came into existence at the Edward Lloyd's Coffee House.

    The New World: In the mid-17th century, coffee was brought to New Amsterdam, a location later called New York by the British. Though coffee houses rapidly began to appear, tea continued to be the favored drink in the New World until 1773 when the colonists revolted against a heavy tax on tea imposed by King George.  The revolt, known as the Boston Tea Party, would forever change the American drinking preference to coffee.

    Plantations Around the World: As demand for the beverage continued to spread, there was tense competition to cultivate coffee outside of Arabia. Though the Arabs tried hard to maintain their monopoly, the Dutch finally succeeded, in the latter half of the 17th century, to obtain some seedlings. Their first attempts to plant them in India failed but they were successful with their efforts in Batavia, on the island of Java in what is now Indonesia.  The plants thrived and soon the Dutch had a productive and growing trade in coffee. They soon expanded the cultivation of coffee trees to the islands of Sumatra and Celebes.

    In 1714, the Mayor of Amsterdam presented a gift of a young coffee plant to King Louis XIV of France. The King ordered it to be planted in the Royal Botanical Garden in Paris. In 1723, a young naval officer, Gabriel de Clieu obtained a seedling from the King's plant.  Once planted, the seedling thrived and is credited with the spread of over 18 million coffee trees on the island of Martinique over the next 50 years.  It was also the stock from which coffee trees throughout the Caribbean, and South and Central America originated.

    Coffee is said to have come to Brazil in the hands of Francisco de Mello Palheta who was sent by the emperor to French Guiana for the purpose of obtaining coffee seedlings. But the French were not willing to share. However, he was said to have been so handsomely-engaging that the French Governor's wife was captivated. As a going-away gift, she presented him with a large bouquet of flowers.  Buried inside he found enough coffee seeds to begin what is today a billion-dollar industry.

    In only 100 years, coffee had established itself as a commodity crop throughout the world.  Missionaries and travelers, traders and colonists continued to carry coffee seeds to new lands and coffee trees were planted worldwide.  Plantations were established in tropical forests and on rugged mountain highlands. New nations were established on coffee economies.  And by the end of the 18th century, coffee had become one of the world's most profitable export crops.

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  • Going to Origin: Colombia Toledo-Labateca

    by Johnny Hoell | Mar 09, 2016

    It was a 3 hour drive from the airport. In the backseat of a Jeep Cherokee on a bumpy dirt road, we wound up the mountain path toward the cities of Toledo and Labateca. Two towns separated by a large river. As the sun set and the mountainous landscape disappeared into the night, I had no idea what to expect. This was my first trip to origin, let alone to Colombia. What I would find would be two amazing communities and a passion for maintaining a tradition of producing high-quality Colombian coffee.

    Community Coffee Company’s partnership with the towns of Toledo and Labateca started long before I joined the company.  Their regional coffee was first featured at a special exhibit at the Specialty Coffee Association of America’s annual conference.  This coffee profile was bright and rich and stood out from among many regional Colombian coffees.  It would be the building block that established a long-term relationship between Community Coffee and Toledo-Labateca.

    16PR_Columbia_additionalAs the SUV slowed, we arrived at a small restaurant in Labateca and were warmly greeted by teachers, students and city officials.  Over a delicious meal featuring local fare, they shared stories about their coffee education program and the impact we’ve had on their communities. Going on its 13th year, Community Coffee has an agreement with the communities of Toledo and Labateca that includes exclusive ownership to distribute their coffee within the United States.  We also provide annual monetary support that funds programs that are needed within their local communities, such as renovation of schools and farming equipment.

    Over the past two years, Community Coffee’s contributions funded the “Sowers of Future Young Coffee Growers” program, which provides 100 students with coffee seedlings and teaches them how to care for and harvest the coffee beans. During my visit, these students and their teachers would be our tour guides, demonstrating what they’ve learned and the progress of their trees.  It was incredible to see their level of expertise and passion for coffee.  For many, these coffee plots were the start of their career.  For others, the profits gained from these plots would fund future endeavors— a college education in the nearby town of Calcutta or nursing school – that may not have been possible before the program. It was some of these stories that truly showed the long-term impact of what we were doing and how such a small contribution could impact so many lives.

    The next day, we got up early and traveled to the education center in Labateca. I was surprised to see our logo proudly displayed on the walls of the school and the uniforms of the students.  Overlooking rows of seedlings, we’re given instruction on how the plants are cared for to ensure they are at their peak to be transferred to the farms.  I continue to be amazed by the level of depth and passion for quality demonstrated by the students.  From there, we travel on a bumpy road to the Labateca farm. After a short hike through the coffee fields, we arrive at the main house. The students explain the various stages of growth and fermentation and demonstrate their pulping machine. We are treated to a traditional Colombian lunch- seared beef, guacamole salsa, potato and plantain.

    The next day we visit the students’ farm in Toledo.  After reviewing the coffee fields, we’re given a lesson on drying and sorting the beans based on quality.  The intricacy of the sorting process is astonishing.  A chip in the bean or small black speck can move a bean from specialty-grade to being discarded.  The importance of the growing process and detail required to preserve the quality of the bean is apparent throughout our trip.  Coffee is their passion and soon-to-be livelihood.

    16pr_columbia_additional_3The last day was by far my favorite.  After a quick breakfast, we head to the school at Toledo. This building was originally an old monastery complete with dormitories. Using funds from the program, the staff renovated it to be their new school, which now houses students during the school week whose homes are too far to travel daily. Located in a valley surrounded by beautiful mountains, it’s a picturesque setting for any type of education.

    After a tour of the school, including the computer lab we helped them purchase several years ago, we are ushered into the main hall for the presentations and awards. We watch a short video of the results of the past years’ work including commentary from the farmers and students. Then, to our surprise, their resident priest presents a very special honor- a change in the name of the school building.  The Toledo school is officially renamed in honor of Norman Saurage III, who helped establish this successful partnership. After more speeches from local officials and dancing and skits from the students, we enjoy another traditional Colombian lunch that the students helped prepare – chicken soup, yuca, chicken, potato, tomato and onion.

    As I sat on the plane heading back to the U.S, I reflected on everything we saw in Colombia and the contributions made over the past 13 years.  The amount of work and attention to detail required of coffee farming is immense.  I was extremely proud of the students and their passion for learning the industry.  It was obviously a labor of love.  But I was also honored to be a part of Community Coffee and proud of those in the organization that had the foresight to establish this program.  Not only are we supporting and enriching the futures of the children in Toledo and Labateca, but we’re able to bring back a fantastic exclusive coffee for our customers. While this was my first trip to origin, I’m hopeful it won’t be my last.
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  • The Perfect Blend of Heart and Family

    by Johnny Hoell | Mar 03, 2016

    Community® coffee is now served on all Southwest® flights. Southwest Airlines Co. selected Community® coffee based on our superior taste and their desire to ensure that their passengers received the best possible in-flight experiences while traveling Southwest Airlines.  In a double-blind taste test conducted by the airline, Community® Signature Blend—a 100% Arabica coffee beans blend—was voted number one.

    IMG_0135
    The Perfect Blend of Heart and Family: Community Coffee Company’s founding family celebrates the Southwest partnership with Gary Kelly, Chairman of the Board, President, and Chief Executive Officer of Southwest Airlines. Pictured left to right Catherine Saurage, Gary Kelly, Donna Saurage and Matt Saurage.
    “We continuously look for ways to enhance the Customer Experience onboard our aircraft, and Community coffee hits the spot,” said Sonya Lacore, Southwest Airlines Vice President of Cabin Services. “Community Coffee Company offers a high-quality product and shares our commitment to invest in the communities where our Customers, Employees and Suppliers live and work.”

    For every pound of Community coffee served on a Southwest flight, the airline and Community Coffee Company will provide funding to the ECOM Foundation, a nonprofit organization focused on ensuring a better life for origin producers. The donations will fund educational programs to support the children, families, and farmers in Mexico where Community Coffee Company’s high-quality Arabica coffee beans are grown. Hear from some of the coffee growers who will benefit here.

    CC_Blog_ImageInitially, the collaborative effort will support the opening of two satellite schools in rural Chiapas, Mexico, where residents have historically been challenged by the difficult terrain and weather conditions to reach schools in far-away towns. The schools will serve not only children, but the community at large through secondary education opportunities including advanced farming techniques for farmers and community training.

    For more information about the collaboration, visit southwest.com/coffee.


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  • A Guide to Coffee Roasts

    by Johnny Hoell | Feb 25, 2016
    Many people prefer one coffee roast over another. To get the perfect cup of any roast, there is extensive preparation and perfecting of the process known as roasting.

    Roasting is a heat process that transforms raw beans into the fragrant and flavorful dark brown beans we know and love.

    The task is a technical skill that combines science and art. It takes years of training to become an expert roaster with the ability to ‘read’ the beans and make decisions with split second timing. The difference between perfectly-roasted coffee and a ruined batch can be a matter of seconds.

    Roasting brings out the aroma and flavor that is locked inside the green coffee beans. A green coffee bean has none of the characteristics of a roasted bean.  It is soft, with a fresh grassy smell and little or no taste.  Roasting causes numerous chemical changes to take place. The sugars, fats and starches that are within the beans are emulsified, caramelized and released as the beans are rapidly brought to very high temperatures. When they reach the peak of perfection, they are quickly cooled to stop the process. Roasted beans smell like coffee and weigh less because the moisture has been roasted out. They are crunchy to the bite, ready to be ground and brewed.

    guidetocoffeeroast_2Most roasters have specialized names for their favored roasts.  In general, roasts fall into one of four color categories—light, medium, medium-dark or dark.  The perfect roast is a subjective choice that is sometimes determined by national preference or geographic location. In the U.S., people on the West coast tend to drink a darker roast, while those on the East coast generally prefer a medium roast.

    The Roasts

    Within the four color categories, you are likely to find common roasts as listed below. As coffee roasts get darker, they lose the original flavors of the bean and take on more flavor from the roasting process. Consequently, caffeine moderately decreases as the roast time increases. Regardless of roast level, all roasts will differ in taste. Two coffee varieties grown in different environments are likely to taste different even when roasted to the same level, so it is important to try a variety of coffee to find what best suits your taste.

    Light Roasts

    Light roast coffees have a light body and pronounced snappy acidity. There is no oil on the surface of the beans. The original flavors of the bean are retained to a greater extent than in darker roasted coffees. Light roasts retain most of the caffeine from the coffee bean. Community Coffee Company’s signature light roast is known as our Breakfast Blend.

    Medium Roasts

    Medium roasted coffees are medium brown in color with more body than light roasts. Medium roasts exhibit a more balanced flavor, aroma and acidity.  This roast is often referred to as the American roast because it is generally preferred in the United States.  Community’s Amber Sunrise™ Blend is a perfect example.

    Medium—Dark Roasts

    Medium-Dark Roasts has a richer, darker color with some oil on the surface of the beans. A medium-dark roast has a heavy body in comparison with the lighter or medium roasts. Our ground Café Special® is a better known medium-dark roast.

    Dark Roasts

    Dark roasts are dark brown or almost black. The beans can have an oily surface and a pronounced bold rich body. As roasting times increase, acidity decreases which provides smooth mellow flavor.  A perfect example of a dark roast is Community® Signature Blend Dark Roast blend which provides Dark rich satisfying flavor that Dark Roast drinkers are known to love.

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  • Employee Spotlight: Emily Arbour

    by Johnny Hoell | Feb 18, 2016
    Although a good cup of coffee is timeless, the world of the coffee business is ever changing. That’s where Emily Arbour, General Manager of Brand Strategy and Innovation, comes in. Her focus at Community Coffee Company is to utilize multiple data sources and custom marketing research to develop highly actionable communications and product strategies. She leads our aggressive innovations program to ensure continued market growth and customer-driven product evolution to keep up with consumers’ wants and needs.

    EmilyOriginsPost_Notes“Innovation is about openness to new ideas and understanding how to truly create value for your consumers,” says Emily. This passion and openness are key values in helping to create and maintain an innovative culture focused on growing with our customers.

    Each Community employee has a personal commitment to providing exceptional products, services, and solutions to our customers, and this value is integrated across our organization. However, the Marketing team specifically sets aside time to dive into the consumer culture.  Emily suggests,  “Taking this time enables us to better understand our user and create synergistic platforms that create true value.”

    What’s the biggest challenge of Emily’s job? It’s distinguishing between a true need and a passing fad.  Through Emily’s research, our company knows there are over-arching trends impacting consumers’ shopping habits. In the 2015 IRI New Product Pacesetters report, general consumer food and beverage needs revolve around seeking simplicity, excitement, and wellness. However, the definition of healthy is evolving as well. It is more about balancing indulgence with healthy products rather than eliminating the opportunity for both. Emily adds, “Ensuring we understand the nuances of these evolving needs and then find ways to deliver on them for our consumers is an ongoing innovation initiative for Community Coffee Company.”

    EmilyOriginsPost_CuppingBKnowing what draws consumers is essential to being a proactive and adaptive company. In our industry, we see consumer tastes becoming more sophisticated.  Consumers want a better, higher-quality cup of coffee and are increasing their search for new specialty beverages that offer a unique experience.  Staying in tune to these trends allows Emily and Community Coffee Company to make educated product choices that appeal to consumers.

    Additionally, Emily says, “We also maintain an evolving innovative product launch calendar and are committed to providing marketing support for a new flavor or blend promotion to get the attention of our customers.” With the help of her research and insights, looking into the future is an exciting thing for Community Coffee Company.

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  • Coffee Pairing: The Perfect Match

    by Johnny Hoell | Feb 12, 2016
    Valentine’s Day. You can smell the love in the air! Or is it just Community® coffee brewing? This Valentine’s Day, there’s no need to stress about what brew goes with your favorite treats. We specialize in coffee and it only makes sense to provide Valentine’s Day perfect pairings for you and your perfect match.

    Here are some irresistible combinations for you and your special someone:​
    • To start your Valentine’s Day off right, try a steaming cup of our Breakfast Blend and a plate of blueberry pancakes. You can also impress your honey with the rich yet smooth taste of medium-dark roast Café Special® blend. Pair it with your favorite breakfast foods like cinnamon scones or sausage casserole.
    • Our Café Special® coffee blends well with a creamy dessert like coconut custard or bananas foster. Creamy desserts and sweet cakes, such as cheesecake work well with this semi-sweet, full-bodied medium-dark roast coffee.
    • The Colombia Toledo-Labateca coffee is the perfect complement to a tart key lime pie or lemon pie. Rich cakes and pies, like carrot cake or pecan pie benefit from the strong flavor of a dark roast to balance the tastes.
    • For later in the day, Community® coffee French Roast and brownies are a perfect combination. The rich chocolate in this treat plays very well with the full-bodied and smoky taste of this coffee.  For a less smoky flavor, pair rich chocolate sweets with premium dark roast coffees, such as our Signature Blend Dark Roast.

    A general rule of coffee-pairing thumb is the richer the dessert (i.e. chocolate, praline or peanut butter flavoring), the darker the roast. If you need help finding a great heart-felt recipe utilizing Community® coffee as an ingredient, check out our previous post.  

    Take our advice and surprise your Valentine this year with one of our perfect pairings. What’s not to love?

    Valentines Gift Giving Ideas

    Valentine’s Day, while romantic, can be fraught with gifting and planning stress.  The average consumer spends over $100 on their valentine. This year, swap out conventional for innovative with some non-traditional gift-giving ideas for your special someone. Here are some tips and ideas on how to elevate traditionally popular gifts like flowers, chocolates and jewelry to a truly personal, memorable experience.

    The New Relationship: Don’t go overboard. For a just budding relationship, consider giving a gift you might bring a hostess at a party: wine or treats. Try something other than candy. Choose cookies, a favorite snack food, or dinner at a new restaurant in town.

    Flowers are a great go-to option.  Make sure that the memories last longer than the bouquet by making flowers part of a special event or moment.  Plan a romantic picnic at your local botanical gardens or park.

    Personalize: If you're in a longer-term relationship, from 6 months to 6-plus years, you probably know enough about the other person to personalize your gift. Show how much you appreciate and care for your significant other by putting a special twist on an otherwise ordinary gift.

    You can’t go wrong with chocolates.  To show that you put some extra thought into your gift, consider ordering custom monogrammed chocolates with your loved one’s initials. If you’re sending chocolate to your loved one’s office, a good tip is to send enough for his/her officemates.  You’ll be a real hero among the co-workers.

    Jewelry is always a luxurious, well-received gift, but it can sometimes feel a little impersonal. Take the extra time to have it personalized with a small engraving, whether initials, I love you, a special date, etc. If you plan far enough in advance, have the jewelry custom made based on your loved one’s favorite stones, colors, designs.

    It Really IS the Thought That Counts: Catering to your love's special interests or giving something that promotes you being together will mean much more than three dozen red roses or expensive jewelry.

    Going out to dinner or even dining in on Valentine’s Day is pretty standard fare, but there are ways you can make it a more memorable occasion. If you are dining at home, have a special bottle of wine chilling on the table and a menu planned that features their favorite foods or meal. To complete the perfect meal, pair your favorite desserts with a Community® coffee blend as suggested by our coffee pairing guide.


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  • Mardi Gras Top 10 Countdown

    by Johnny Hoell | Jan 25, 2016
    It’s time to put your revelry shoes on and celebrate. The origins of Mardi Gras in New Orleans can be traced to medieval Europe, passing through Rome and Venice to evolve into the ornately-costumed festivities we see today.  There’s a lot of tradition and heritage that have helped to produce the Mardi Gras scene as it’s currently celebrated. So here are our top ten good things to know to enjoy Mardi Gras like a native.

    Number 10

    How to spell “krewe” and “flambeaux” and “Mardi Gras” and, well, you get the point.

    Number 9

    Technically, Carnival is a season, and Mardi Gras is a day. But we tend to generalize and refer to the weeks of parades leading up to Fat Tuesday as Mardi Gras.

    Number 8

    The Mardi Gras colors are purple, green and gold. Remember to coordinate your outfit appropriately.

    Number 7

    The Captain of the Krewe is more important than the King. But the King gets all the glory, while the Captain does all the work.

    Number 6

    If you miss a doubloon thrown from a float, never reach down to pick it up. Always put your foot on it. If you go with your hand, you're either too late or you'll get your fingers stepped on.

    Number 5

    If you bite into a plastic baby in a King Cake, that's a good thing.

    Number 4

    Any beads shorter than two feet long are unacceptable unless they are made of glass -- the bigger and longer the beads, the better.

    Number 3

    Once any beads have touched the ground, they are sullied and should not be picked up unless under the rarest of circumstances.

    Number 2

    The vast majority of people in the French Quarter during Carnival are from out of town.

    Number 1

    The Number 1 thing you must know about Mardi Gras season is that Community© Mardi Gras King Cake coffee hits the shelves. We suggest you celebrate with the “king” of all flavored coffees, our delicious Mardi Gras King Cake coffee with light vanilla and cinnamon flavoring.

    For a limited time you can have your cake … and drink it, too.

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  • St. Thomas More Uses Funds to Support Teachers

    by Johnny Hoell | Jan 15, 2016
    Big things are happening behind the doors of St. Thomas More Catholic School in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. With the help of the Community Cash for Schools® program, the school earned $3,300 to put toward fun, educational items. Each school can allocate the money to various things their school needs, whether it is textbooks, playground equipment, computers or anything else the school sees fit. St. Thomas More has a different approach to the funds. They distribute the money to each teacher who then purchases items for his or her classroom based on what they think is best. Teachers get pretty creative with their funds.

    StThomas_400x413_AThis year, St. Thomas More’s teachers bought puzzles, parachutes, exercise equipment, and bracelets. The bracelets were Mr. Quantrille’s idea to teach children valuable character traits. Mr. Q, as his students call him, implemented a reward system that allows his students to receive beads for certain characteristics they display. Each bead is color coded to match a characteristic, such as red for caring, yellow for respect, and blue for honesty.

    In addition to the bracelets, the physical education classes are enjoying a new parachute, jump ropes, balls, and other equipment. Inside the classroom, children can continue the fun with educational items for all ages. In Mrs. Burke’s classroom, the kids can play with new, interactive puzzles. These new items are focused on making everything from learning to exercising fun and engaging for the children.

    St. Thomas More is committed to educating the whole child—mentally, physically, and spiritually, which helps the children become the best they can be. The Community Cash for Schools® program continues to help schools work toward their goals and provide for the teachers, the students, and the whole school community.

    Community Coffee Company supports schools by paying 10 cents for every proof of purchase turned in to teachers. Coffee products, tea products, creamer, sugar and coffee filters contain eligible Proofs of Purchase. For more information on the Community Cash for Schools® program, visit CommunityCoffee.com/CashforSchools or call 1-800-884-5282.
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  • Have your cake … and drink it, too!

    by Johnny Hoell | Jan 14, 2016
    A party is best shared and so is a pot of coffee, which is why we like to bring Mardi Gras on the road with our Mardi Gras King Cake coffee. Community© Mardi Gras King Cake coffee hits shelves in late December to kick off the carnivale season.

    SlicedCakeBlogImageOf course, what would Mardi Gras King Cake coffee be without a little King Cake as well. Mardi Gras season and King Cakes go hand in hand with literally hundreds of thousands of King Cakes being consumed at parties and office lunch rooms every year.

    The coming of the wise men bearing gifts to the Christ Child is celebrated twelve days after Christmas. This is referred to as the Feast of the Epiphany, or Little Christmas on the Twelfth Night.  King Cake continues the celebration of the Feast of the Epiphany with a special cake to honor the Three Kings. This tradition originated in Europe where a bean or a coin would be hidden inside of the cake for good fortune to the finder. In Latin America a small figure, representing the Christ Child was placed inside for the same purpose.

    Today, the tradition continues with people all over the world. The tiny baby in the King Cake is generally plastic now and many times provided with the cake so the party host, and not the baker, can insert the “baby.” In offices, schools and homes the King Cake is a weekly tradition from January 6th until the beginning of Lent, Ash Wednesday, with whoever gets the baby usually buying the next cake. And, of course, whoever gets the baby in the cake on Mardi Gras day has to bring the first King Cake next year on January 6th.

    Originally, King Cakes were a simple ring of braided dough with a small amount of decoration. The top of the ring or oval cake is then covered with delicious sugar toppings in the traditional Mardi Gras colors of purple, green and gold. Some bakeries have been creative with stuffing and topping their cakes with different flavors of cream cheese and fruit fillings. We’ve also gotten creative too and added Community© Mardi Gras King Cake coffee to our offerings.

    With the King Cake being the centerpiece at many Mardi Gras parties throughout the season, it only makes sense to pair it with the “king” of all flavored coffees, Community© Mardi Gras King Cake coffee.

    Share the Mardi Gras spirit while having your cake and drinking it, too!
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  • Mardi Gras: The Greatest Free Show on Earth

    by Johnny Hoell | Jan 07, 2016
    GreatestShow_King_CroppedThe carnivale season officially begins each year on January 6, the Feast of the Epiphany, 'King's Day', with traditional balls occurring in the weeks that lead up to the big event. Spectacular parades with beautiful and creative floats begin parading approximately two weekends prior to Mardi Gras Day. And don’t forget the private carnivale clubs, called krewes, which take on royalty status and throw beads, doubloons and toys to parade goers, while visitors quickly learn to say "Throw Me Something, Mister!"

    However, the traditions of today migrated from medieval Europe and evolved in south Louisiana over generations beginning as early as 1699 when French-Canadian explorer Jean Baptiste Le Moyne Sieur de Bienville arrived at a plot of ground 60 miles south of New Orleans, naming it "Pointe du Mardi Gras" since it was the eve of the holiday.

    Jean Baptiste ultimately established New Orleans in 1718 and quickly instituted traditions from Rome and Venice including parading to signal the coming Lenten meat fast, which occurred on Fat Tuesday. By the 1730s, Mardi Gras was celebrated openly in New Orleans, but not with the parades we know today. In the early 1740s, Louisiana's governor, the Marquis de Vaudreuil, established elegant society balls, the model for the New Orleans Mardi Gras balls of today.

    mardigras_400x413By the late 1830s, New Orleans held street processions of maskers with carriages and horseback riders to celebrate Mardi Gras. Dazzling gaslight torches, or "flambeaux," lit the way for the krewe's members. In 1856, six young Mobile natives formed the Mistick Krewe of Comus, invoking John Milton's hero Comus to represent their organization. Comus brought dazzling floats (known as tableaux cars) and masked balls. In 1870, Mardi Gras' second "Krewe," the Twelfth Night Revelers, was formed, with the first account of Mardi Gras "throws."

    Newspapers began to announce Mardi Gras events in advance. Beginning in 1886, full color images were printed, doing justice to the fabulously ornate floats and costumes of world-renown designers whose works were brought to life by talented Parisian paper-mache' artist Georges Soulie', who for forty years was responsible for creating all of carnivale's floats and processional outfits.

    A King of Carnivale, Rex, was invented in1872 by a group of businessmen to preside over the first daytime parade. Honoring visiting Russian Grand Duke Alexis Romanoff, they introduced his family colors of purple, green and gold as carnivale's official colors. Purple stands for justice, gold for power, and green for faith.

    In 1873, floats began to be constructed entirely in New Orleans instead of France. In 1875, Governor Warmoth signed the "Mardi Gras Act," making Fat Tuesday a legal holiday in Louisiana, which it still is.

    Like Comus and the Twelfth Night Revelers, most Mardi Gras krewes today developed from private social clubs with restrictive membership policies. All of these parade organizations are completely funded by their members. Therefore, many New Orleanians call Mardi Gras the "Greatest Free Show on Earth"!
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  • Boost Your Resolution Planning

    by Johnny Hoell | Dec 24, 2015

    When you pour your first cup of coffee, it will come as no surprise that caffeine boosts attention and focus, but it’s especially good for simple cognitive tasks. Anywhere from 40 mg to 250 mg of caffeine increases alertness. That’s less than you think – simply one cup can provide the boost you need to power through some of your more routine tasks.

    You can take full advantage of that little extra momentum to clean out your inbox, sort mail, make necessary callbacks, any of those little tasks that many of us put off and allow to pile up.

    It’s a great time to enjoy your java while writing down your resolutions. If your New Year's resolutions from last year have gone unresolved, you're not alone. But here are some quick tips to help you get a little further along this year.

    • "Put some thought into it," says Richard O'Connor, author of Happy at Last: The Thinking Person's Guide to Finding Joy. Avoid knee-jerk New Year's resolutions, he says. "I encourage people not to make cheap resolutions, but to save it for something meaningful."
    • Limit your list to a number you can handle. "It's probably best to make two or three resolutions that you intend to keep," says O'Connor. That way, you're focusing your efforts on the goals you truly want.
    • Don’t wait until the last minute. If your resolution is a big one, it is good to think about it in advance. Start to change your way of thinking gradually, so as you tackle it in the New Year it isn’t as much of a shock.
    • Make a plan. Everyone needs a path to get to where they want to be. Create a goal with a series of measureable, specific steps to check your progress along the way and ensure you achieve your resolution.
    • Use the buddy system. Make friends and family aware of your goals. They will hold you accountable while still motivating you to actually reach your goals.
    • Avoid repeating past failures. If you make the same goal every year, and have yet to reach it, it’s probably time to try something new. By making the exact same resolution every year, your drive and self-confidence will already be low. If you are really set on making the same resolution that failed in the past, evaluate why it might not have succeeded before and adjust it based on your results!
    • Write down the goal and visualize it regularly. Writing and visualizing are effective tools for fulfilling a goal because they fix it firmly in the subconscious, says Stephen Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

    In general, remember that life can be unpredictable. Resolutions are much easier to make than to keep, so forgive yourself if you can’t maintain your plan perfectly. Just keep adjusting and moving forward toward your goal.

    Happy 2016!


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  • Serve Up Simple Holiday Comforts

    by Johnny Hoell | Dec 18, 2015
    Everyone deserves a warm welcome during the holidays — especially your loved ones. But instead of working all day in the kitchen while the kids are home, fill up your fridge with mouthwatering snacks. Then you can do what you do best: get comfy and focus on your family.

    From savory shrimp cocktail with a make-ahead sauce, decadent bacon wrapped potatoes, to a hearty spinach dip, there’s something for even the pickiest eater in your family.

    Plus, many of these recipes can be made in 30 minutes or less. So what are you waiting for? Get cookin’.


    CARAMEL POPCORN
    Serves: 8
    Difficulty: 1
    Prep Time: 10 minutes
    Cook Time: 10 minutes
     

    Ingredients:
    3 quarts plain popped corn
    1 c. firmly packed brown sugar
    1/2 c. corn syrup
    1/2 c. butter
    1/2 tsp. vanilla
    1/2 tsp. salt
    1/2 tsp. baking soda  

    Directions:

    In a saucepan, combine brown sugar, corn syrup, butter, vanilla, and salt. Stir constantly until the mixture starts to boil, and continue to boil and stir for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, add baking soda, and stir. Pour over popped corn in a large bowl.  

    Note: Can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.


    SNAPPY SHRIMP COCKTAIL
    Serves: 8
    Difficulty: 2
    Prep Time: 20 minutes
    Cook Time: 1 hour


    Ingredients:
    2 tbsps. olive oil
    1 small shallot, finely chopped
    1 tbsp. mustard seeds
    1 tsp. ground ginger
    1 clove garlic
    Dash of salt and pepper
    1/3 c. tomato paste
    1/4 tsp. of Worcestershire sauce
    1 tsp. sugar
    2 tbsps. finely chopped fresh cilantro
    1 1/2 pounds cooked, peeled and deveined shrimp

    Directions:
    Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallot, mustard seeds, ginger, garlic and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the shallot is soft, about 3 -5 minutes.

    Next, add the tomato paste and Worcestershire sauce to the saucepan and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Add the sugar and 1/2 cup water and stir to combine. Transfer to a small bowl and refrigerate until chilled, at least 1 hour. Fold in cilantro and serve with the shrimp.

    Note: Cocktail sauce can be made up to a week ahead. Shrimp can be cooked a day ahead and served cold.


    BACON WRAPPED TATERS
    Serves: 8
    Difficulty: 3
    Prep Time: 20 minutes
    Cook Time: 30 minutes


    Ingredients:
    1 1/2 pounds new potatoes (about 15), halved
    15 slices bacon, halved crosswise
    3/4 c. mayonnaise
    1/4 c. buttermilk
    2 tbsp. finely chopped fresh dill
    1 tsp. caraway seeds
    Salt and pepper

    Directions:
    Steam the potatoes in a steamer basket in a large saucepan until tender, 15 to 18 minutes. Let cool. Heat oven to 425°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Wrap each potato with a piece of bacon and place, seam-side down, on the baking sheet. Bake until the bacon is crisp, 18–20 minutes. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, buttermilk, dill, caraway seeds and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Serve with potatoes.

    Note: Bacon-wrapped potatoes can be made a day ahead and reheated before serving. Also, consider serving on bamboo skewers.


    SPINACH AND CARAMELIZED ONION DIP
    Serves: 8
    Difficulty: 3
    Prep Time: 20 minutes
    Cook Time: 30 minutes


    Ingredients:
    3 tbsp. olive oil
    2 medium onions, chopped
    Salt and pepper
    1 16-oz container sour cream
    1 10-oz package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and      squeezed of excess liquid
    1 tbsp. white wine vinegar
    Broccoli and cauliflower florets, endive spears and radishes, for serving

    Directions:
    Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring often, until golden brown, 12 – 15 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl and let cool. Add the sour cream, spinach, vinegar, 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper to the onions and mix to combine. Serve with the veggies.

    Note: Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.


    WHITE CHOCOLATE STRAWBERRIES
    Serves: 6
    Difficulty: 2
    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Ingredients:
    1 bag of white chocolate chips
    1 container of strawberries
    1 c. chopped and toasted cashews

    Directions:
    Melt white chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl or a double boiler. Dip strawberries in chocolate and coat with chopped, toasted cashews. Place on a wax paper covered tray. Refrigerate until set.

    Note: Place chocolate dipped strawberries atop wax paper in a plastic container. Layer the wax paper between strawberries before shutting lid. Freeze strawberries for up to a week and served when chilled.


    For even more recipes, tips and cold-weather comforts, be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram.
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  • Give The Gift of Comfort This Season

    by Johnny Hoell | Dec 10, 2015
    Busy marking gifts off your holiday shopping list? Join the club. ‘Tis the season of giving — and all the buying, wrapping and shopping that comes along with it.

    We all know that it’s easy to get caught up in the idea of giving your loved ones the perfect gift during the holidays. So much that sometimes, we forget about the gift of giving back.

    Never fear. There’s plenty of holiday spirit to go around.

    Here are a few ideas of how you and your family can join together to give to others in need — all the while making cherished memories.

    GIVE YOUR TIME
    Feed A Needy Family
    Put food on the table — and smiles on the faces of a hungry family near you. When you volunteer with Family-to-family.org, you get matched with a household in need.

    Help The Homeless
    The very idea of the holidays conjures up images of comfy homes, yummy food and happy family gatherings. But for the homeless, the holidays can bring on a sense of isolation. Fortunately, the National Coalition for the Homeless offers a number of ways for volunteers to combat homelessness by serving food at shelters, building homes, or offering job training. Give the gift of comfort this season.

    Deliver A Hot Meal
    Share a meal with a lonely person in need this holiday season when you sign up with Meals on Wheels’ food-delivery program.

    Volunteer For Vets
    There are plenty of ways to show your gratitude towards the veterans who put their lives on the line for our safety. Simply visit the Department of Veteran Affairs for more information on how to make their holiday season just a little more comfortable.

    Befriend A Senior
    More than 50 percent of senior citizens in nursing homes never get visitors, according to the Senior Source. Bring a sense of family to someone who doesn’t have one by volunteering in a center near you.

    Make a Furry Friend
    Volunteer with furry, loyal creatures who are waiting to find the purr-fect home. Find an animal shelter that needs your help here.


    GIVE OTHERS GIFTS
    The Salvation Army
    Each holiday season, the Salvation Army amps up its fundraising efforts to help support the elderly, the homeless and other underserved populations. Join the cause today.

    American Red Cross
    “Give something that means something” when you get involved with the American Red Cross. Choose from many different charitable opportunities, which include vaccinating a child and buying phone cards for troops. Then, feel good for doing good.

    Toys for Tots
    Marine Toys for Tots Foundation collects gifts for children whose families are economically disadvantaged. No drop-off center? No problem. You can also start your own. Find out how to get involved here.

    MyTwoFrontTeeth.org
    Stumped by what to give this year? MyTwoFrontTeeth.org helps you figure out what to donate by posting requests from charities, preschools and day care centers. Find out more here.

    Angel Tree
    Angel Tree helps people in prison give their children gifts during the holiday season, to help ensure these separated families maintain a strong connection — despite the distance. To get involved, click here.


    For even more Community® coffee recipes, tips and cold-weather comforts, be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram.
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  • The Perfect Gift For Everyone on Your List

    by Johnny Hoell | Dec 02, 2015
    Don’t let the pressure of finding that picture-perfect gift stress you out. Take a few deep breaths and find your happy place. Then, take a peek at our 2015 Holiday Gift Round Up. There’s guaranteed to be something special for everyone on your list.

    For the foodie:
    Have a cheese lover in the family? Know someone who can’t get enough curds and whey? Get them the Deluxe DIY Cheese Kit — and let them make their own mozzarella, ricotta, goat cheeses and more from the comfort of their kitchen.

    For the sports lover:
    Every season, he dons war paint. His jerseys are pressed and ready for the playoffs. He’s a super fan. And he’s ready for the perfect gift. No, not the Heisman Trophy. Give him a personalized Sports Nation poster — complete with his name, witty message and favorite sports team logo.

    For the chocoholic:
    For the chocolate lover who truly has it all — or at the very least wants it all — comes Mast Brothers’ Chocolate.  Finely wrapped, deliciously seasoned and uniquely flavored, any or all of the Mast Brothers products will be sure to please.

    For the human pretzel:
    Frequently seen standing on her head or showing off her latest crow pose, the human pretzel has everything a girl could need: flexibility, poise and the ability to withstand the effects of the Earth’s gravitational pull. She’s got everything, except a custom-monogrammed yoga mat. Personalize the carrying bag and mat by choosing from a dizzying array of colors and embroidery styles here.

    For the cat lady:
    The fancy cat dishtowel, complete with stylish pink bow and coy stare, will keep any cat lady company while she’s doing the dishes. Let’s just say its catnip for the cat lovers.

    For the fashionista:
    She’s got style. She’s got grace. She’s obviously got great taste. So why not indulge her fashion sense with a stunning day planner? With black and white stripes and a 17-month agenda, this little planner is every fashionista dream come true. Keeping tabs on life has never looked so good.

    For the hands-on musician:
    Crafty guitar players will love this! Get the musician in your life the Original Pick Punch. Use this tool to transform virtually anything into a guitar pick — from old credit cards, plastic takeout containers, vintage records to pressed wood, so the musician in your life can stop loosing picks, and start making them.

    For the beard aficionado:
    Any lumberjack will tell you winter wrecks havoc on your whiskers. Help out the bearded fellow in your life with Simply Great Shave Oil and give him the gift of a smooth, soft beard.

    For the not-a-morning person:
    We all know one: the I-can’t-wake-up-without-my-morning-brew guy. The I-don’t-open-my-eyes-before-my-third-cup gal. Give them all an eye-opening gift — our Coffee of the Month Program. Say good morning to 12 months of yum!

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  • Rollins Place Elementary: Innovative Solutions to Educating our Children

    by Johnny Hoell | Nov 23, 2015
    Educators can be especially creative when it comes to stretching dollars to facilitate broadening the minds of future generations. Children learn in so many different ways and Rollins Place Elementary, located in Zachary, La., is a great example of creating an environment of continuous, innovative learning.

    What do chickens, music and robots have to do with education? Well, at Rollins Place, everything. The school is focused on expanding children’s minds through every day activities in and outside of the classroom. With the help of funds earned from the Community Cash for Schools® program, Rollins Place was able to incorporate cutting edge and innovative educational tools into its teaching curriculums.

    First, Rollins students are learning the biology and business of chickens. Their physical education classes have been assigned to help care for five chickens, manage the coop and collect the eggs. Additionally, students will learn the ropes to setting up a business by selling the eggs to parents and community members. The classroom course work is transferred to the onsite chicken coop that they call the Wrangler Ranch all in an effort to support learning.

    C4sRollinsPlace_400x413Also, studies have shown that music programs in schools support math and language development and art is known to have critical developmental benefits in children, including improved motor skills, decision making and cultural awareness. The addition of learning tools to these programs helps promote and encourage student creativity.
    In addition to the focus on music and the arts, Rollins Place students are constructing functioning robots. Students learn team building by working together to follow a diagram to build a robot and program it to kick a soccer ball. The hands-on activity challenges students to think in new ways and problem-solve issues as they construct their robot and ensure it functions properly. The project further instills confidence and a sense of accomplishment in each student as they collaborate and complete an assignment with their classmates.

    Rollins Place was one of hundreds of schools that participated in the Community Cash for Schools® program. With the $6,000 that the Zachary elementary schools earned, Rollins Place built the chicken coop, and purchased musical instruments, art supplies and Lego robot kits.

    Community Coffee Company supports schools by paying 10 cents for every proof of purchase turned in to teachers. Coffee products, tea products, creamer, sugar and coffee filters contain eligible Proofs of Purchase. Schools can choose to allocate the money toward new textbooks, computers or events. For more information on the Community Cash for Schools® program, visit CommunityCoffee.com/CashforSchools or call 1-800-884-5282.

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  • Curl Up With These Cold Weather Coffee Classics

    by Johnny Hoell | Nov 18, 2015
    By now you’ve probably felt it — that wonderful chill in the air. Sweater weather is here and the holidays are not too far behind.

    It’s officially the season of comfort.

    Between hunting for the perfect pumpkin, crunching through saffron-colored leaves or simply baking with your friends and family at home, we all know that fall is the perfect excuse to make every moment just a little warmer.

    Because baby, it’s cold outside: so why not get cozy with a tasty coffee drink?

    We transformed four classic coffee recipes into cheerful holiday drinks the whole family will love, and we know you will, too. Get ready to say yum.

    The Minty Mocha Latte
    Serving: 1
    Difficulty: 1
    Cook Time: 5 minutes


    Ingredients:
    1/4 cup brewed Community® Signature Blend Dark Roast
    1/4 cup milk
    1 tbsp. dark chocolate syrup
    1 drop peppermint extract
    Optional toppings: whipped cream, candy cane.

    Directions:
    Brew your Community® coffee as you like it. Meanwhile, heat milk in microwave or stovetop until hot. Mix chocolate syrup and peppermint extract into coffee. Foam milk with milk frother or just pour hot milk into cup. For extra decadence, consider adding a dollop of whipped cream to the top. Garnish with a candy cane stick for a tasty coffee stirrer. Serve warm and enjoy.


    The Pumpkin Patch Brew
    Servings: 8
    Difficulty: 1
    Cook Time: 10 minutes


    Ingredients:
    1 tsp. ground cinnamon
    1/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
    1/4 tsp. nutmeg
    1/4 tsp. ground cloves
    1/4 tsp. ground all spice
    1 cup freshly ground Community® coffee

    Directions: In a large bowl, combine all spices with freshly ground Community® coffee. Next, place spiced grounds in a coffee filter. Add water to your coffee maker and brew the cup to your liking. Serve black or with a dash of milk.


    The White Out Latte
    Servings: 4
    Difficulty: 3
    Cook Time: 35 minutes


    Ingredients:
    3 cup milk
    1 cup crushed whole Community® coffee beans
    1 1/2 stick cinnamon sticks
    4 whole green cardamom pods
    1/4 cup wild honey
    Optional garnish: cinnamon sticks

    Directions:
    Place the milk and crushed coffee beans in a saucepan. Heat the mixture to a simmer over medium-high heat, about 7 minutes. Immediately remove from heat and let the beans steep in the milk for 15 minutes.

    Strain the coffee mixture and transfer to a jar of a blender. Discard the crushed coffee beans. Add cinnamon sticks, cardamom and honey to the steeped milk and blend on high speed until the spices are coarsely ground, about 30 seconds.

    Strain the liquid back into the saucepan and discard the ground spices. Rewarm the spiced coffee over medium-high heat until the liquid is hot and steaming. Pour into warmed coffee mugs, garnish with cinnamon sticks and serve hot.


    The Sugar & Spiced Christmas Coffee

    Servings: 8
    Difficulty: 2
    Cook Time: 15 minutes


    Ingredients:
    3/4 cup chilled whipping cream
    4 1/2 tsp. powdered sugar
    1 cup freshly ground Community® coffee
    5 tsp. ground cardamom
    3 tsp. sugar
    2 tsp. ground cinnamon
    1 tsp. ground nutmeg
    7 cup water

    Directions:
    Using an electric mixer, beat whipping cream in a large bowl until soft peaks form. Then, add powdered sugar and continue beating. Place ground coffee, cardamom, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg in a coffee filter. Using spoon, mix gently. Add water to your coffee maker and brew to your liking. Next, divide coffee among 8 cups. Garnish each with a dollop of whipped cream and serve piping hot.


    Thirsty yet? Better get brewing.
    Community Coffee Company

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