News

For news about all of the happenings at SCG, as well as brand new product announcements, the news section is the place!
  • SCG Crew Interviews: John!

    From giving us the skinny on the newest commercial machines to helping new café owners on the phone, John's a pro! We asked him a few questions about his past, present, and future in coffee. Read on to learn more about this SCG video host and commercial consultant!

    Hey John! Thanks for answering a few questions. Can you tell us a little bit about your history? Have you always lived in Seattle?

    I have been a Washingtonian since birth and grew up in the boonies outside of Sultan, WA. Most people knew where I lived as the place they drove by on their way to the mountains. I lived in California for a brief moment before deciding that private school was too expensive and I moved back to Washington. My wife and I met at our church in 2014 and got married in 2016. We somehow wound up with 3 adopted black cats, it was not our plan to do so!

    What’s your background with coffee? Be specific if you can!

    I was a home barista at the start and knew nothing about the difference between drip coffee and espresso. I had a series of very cheap home espresso machines that promptly broke because I failed to take care of them. After my home endeavors, I began visiting specialty coffee shops and learning about what makes coffee good or bad. I started going to local coffee competitions to observe and eventually made friends with a few folks in the industry. I started with Caffe Ladro in Seattle as a barista and over a few years worked from there to trainer and then to manager. Along the way, I led cuppings, trained dozens of baristas, and absorbed all the coffee knowledge I could. I practiced my latte art diligently and ended up in a few of the local competitions where I met coffee people in the first place. Now I get to educate people from a different perspective and help coffee shops of all different shapes and sizes figure out this crazy and awesome industry we are all a part of!

    What’s your favorite thing about the coffee industry?

    My favorite thing about the coffee industry is the diversity of coffee itself and what it is to different people. Not everyone wants to wait 10 minutes for a carefully prepared cup of coffee that will blow their mind! Some people just need a caffeine fix to get their day started. I have been on both sides of that spectrum and appreciate coffee for both of those things. I think relegating coffee to just one thing that you think it is isn't doing it justice, and that goes for both ends of the spectrum. 

    What’s your favorite way to brew/drink coffee?

    I am an espresso drinker! I love the preparation, dialing it in, drinking it, the whole process. This started mainly because I did not have the patience to wait 5 minutes for my Chemex to finish so I could critique it and make adjustments. I initially liked the instant gratification a grind adjustment makes, but I grew to also enjoy the practice it takes to have consistent results all the time. 

    What do you like to do for fun? Outside of coffee!

    I'm a musician and enjoy all things music! I like to play music with others, go to shows, listen to music, etc... I mainly play with my church's Sunday morning team, but my wife and I are looking to get a house with a dedicated practice space. Drums are not meant for Condos!

    What’s one thing you want everyone who shops at SCG to know about running/opening a cafe?

    I want people to know that while it is not an easy thing to do well, the joy you get from hearing someone talk about how much they love your cafe is worth it. The relationships you get to build with your customers, as well as the experiences you get to create for them, make it all worth it!

    What’s your favorite item we sell on the SCG website?

    That's a tough question! I'd say one of our pitcher rinsers. I would put one in my home if my wife would let me! They make a world of difference in your bar flow and allow to increase your speed of service way more than you would think. 
  • Video Roundup: 2/15/2019

    Hey coffee fans!

    We hope you're staying warm out there if you're experiencing cold weather! This week we have some fun videos to share with you!

    First up, your's truly joined forces with Clementine and Allie to check out our February Roast of the Month!

    Next, we got part two of our workshop tour with Gail!

    Finally, Clementine brewed up some Turkish coffee in another Coffee Collaboration!

    Thanks for joining us, stay tuned for more soon!

  • Video Roundup: 1/18/2019

    Happy Friday!

    It's time for another video roundup here at SCG!

    First up, we took a look at the Technivorm Moccamaster with Gail!

    Next, we did a comparison of the Izzo Alex PID and the Rocket Giotto R!


    Finally, we relaunched Coffee Collaboration with a fabulous new host, Clementine!

    Thanks for joining us! We'll be back next week!

  • Piecewise Coffee Co. - Bio

    An introduction to Stanton and Piecewise Coffee!

    Over the past few months, we've had the pleasure of working with Stanton and Lindsey Scoma on starting their brand new coffee shop! They are looking forward to improving their community of Cayce, South Carolina through coffee! Stanton came to us for advice, and ultimately the purchase of, the equipment in their new shop. We thought it'd be a great opportunity to take a closer look on what it's like to build out and open a coffee shop! Over the coming months we'll talk to Stanton about topics like choosing a machine, building a drink menu, building out the space, and loads more. This week we thought we'd provide an introduction to the Scomas, so read on to learn more about this passionate, hard-working family!

    What’s your history with coffee?

    I’m a chemical engineer by trade, so processes, procedures, and extraction are in my blood. I love the taste of a good cup of coffee and early in 2015 I started realizing there is a true system + method to what gives you amazing taste. The taste that helps us all feel like we can truly seize the day. My wife bought me a ChemEx for Valentine’s Day, I “stole” my twin brother’s burr grinder and the rest is history!

    My wife’s history is somewhere between a long dependence for an early morning cup of joe and anything special I can make for her. She inherently knows when it’s disgusting and when it’s perfection. She’s a sucker for the smell and always thinks it tastes better with a dash of cream + dessert.

    What led you to want to open a coffee shop?

    Like we said earlier, we are true dreamers at heart. Our brains are constantly thinking of all the wonderful things we could be a part of. We would drive by a run-down gas station and talk about how a cute coffee shop could give the area and community a facelift. A coffee shop isn’t just a business, it is a place where community is given the opportunity to gather together. It is a business you don’t just open for yourself, you open it for others. We love the concept!

    Changes in my job lead us to move to a different part of our town. After the move my wife saw a building that left her wondering if this was an opportunity to do something awesome in our area. We started digging and it turned out the building owners were friends of ours who were also searching for someone to do something special in the space. Well, stars started aligning at that point and it’s hard to turn away when they do. Between the amazing building owners, changes in the season of life and my growing love for the industry, we decided we were all in! Opening a coffee shop was in our future.

    How did you find Seattle Coffee Gear?

    The first time I heard about Seattle Coffee Gear was through watching their product review videos for commercial espresso machine reviews. We were interested in specific features, but not a specific model and wanted to learn more about the best machine for our shop. The videos were such a useful resource in making our choice!

    What’s the thing you’re most excited about in terms of building out the shop?

    It would be seeing all the disjointed planning efforts coming together into something real and tangible. The dream comes to life slowly in these small step-by-step iterations. Seeing your invested time, research and decision making finally come to fruition is the sweet reward. You are finally purchasing equipment, choosing furniture color, printing branding on merchandise, and engaging with customers on social media. As exciting as it is to decide on building the shop, it pales watching it become a breathing entity.

    What do you think the biggest challenge will be?

    While we are excited to share the coffee shop with the community, we wonder if the community will be as excited to see the coffee shop come to them. Success can be measured in so many different ways and you hope one of the ways leads to the business sustaining itself. Most business start slow and enduring until you see success will probably be our biggest challenge. No one buys into your vision like you, but if you do something great it is worth the fight. Our inclination is that the community will adopt us, but it still falls into the great unknown until the doors to the coffee shop are open.

    What’s your favorite way to brew/drink coffee?

    My favorite brew method goes back to how I got started with specialty coffee and that’s with a simple ChemEx and burr grinder. I drink my coffee barefoot (aka black). My wife’s favorite brew method is to ask me to make it for her lol. We have a local grocery store who has a good coffee selection and each week we pick up a different roaster or origin. Keeping the brew method the same and changing the beans makes it easier to pick up on all the fun differences in flavor.

     We'll have so much more to share from Piecewise Coffee Co. coming soon!

  • Roast of the Month: Ethiopia Yirgacheffe Yirgz from Victrola

    Hey coffee fans!

    It’s that time again for Roast of the Month! This month we’re featuring a delicious single origin from Victrola: Yirgacheffe Yirgz!

     

    What’s with that name?

     

    The Z in YIRGZ denotes that the coffee has zero defects. That designation comes from the extremely rigorous sorting and processing that the beans undergo after harvesting. Victrola notes that each 14kg batch is hand sorted for 12 minutes, which is 300% longer than is typical for the region. This coffee is sourced through Keffa, a coffee broker that puts as much dedication behind supporting quality of life for their producers as they do the quality of coffee. This results in excellent coffee made even more excellent by an inspired roaster!

     

    This roast offers a range of complex tasting notes. We got a strong citrus flavor at the front of the palate with a satisfying spice around the edges. Also notable is the floral aroma that will greet you as you prepare for your first sip. It’s a really nice, delicate scent that improves the experience of this coffee. As far as brew methods are concerned, we recommend trying this one out as a pourover first to get the complexities and more delicate flavors in this roast.

     

    We love this roast and can’t wait for you to give it a try! Check it out here.
  • Video Roundup: Holiday Edition!

    It's time for our last video roundup of the year! This week we're taking a look back at all of our holiday content to share some you'll enjoy!

    First, here's a look back at our favorite espresso machines of 2018!

    Next, Gail gave us some great gift ideas, here's one of many videos in our "Gifts Under" series!

    Speaking of Gail, here's a little SCG Holiday Special featuring some holiday treats!

    Last but not least, we tried to make an eggnog latte!

  • Behind the Scenes at SCG!

    We've been busy as can be over the last few months. Holidays are always an intense time for retail, and balancing that with offering fun and educational content has been a real trick this year! Here's some insight into what some of our teams have been up to!

    Creative Crew

    For our part, the creative content team has spent as much time as possible cooking up fun video and blog content for everyone. We've also worked hard to provide a useable, attractive shopping experience on the site as well! From our site's holiday page, to Instagram, to video posts, we've all been busy! On top of this, Gail has been working away with our store buildout team to prep for our new brick and mortar location in the Alderwood Mall in Lynnwood WA!

    We can't wait to get back to bringing you more educational, creative, and informative content in 2019. All of your favorite SCG personalities will be on hand to ring in the new year.

    Sales Teams

    From our phone/web sales team to the folks in each of our retail stores, we love our sales teams! It's important to us to do more than sell coffee and equipment. The key is selling you the RIGHT equipment. If we can save you time and money on your quest for the perfect coffee you'll love, we want to. Our sales teams in retail and online do their best to do that, and we think they do a great job. For the holidays, they've seen one of our busiest seasons yet! Between promotions and the ability to offer insightful opinions on equipment, we've had a great time bringing you great products. So the next time you shop with us, give us a call or a chat to get an extra personal touch!

    Customer Service

    Our CS team is full of superstars! It's not hard to imagine that customer service is one of the hardest hit parts of any retailer during the holidays. From suggestions for content down to help with machine issues, our CS team has been extremely busy. That doesn't stop them from offering incredibly friendly, helpful service every step of the way. We love this team to the moon and back!

    Shipping and Repair

    Our shipping and repair teams are often the unsung heroes of the holiday rush. Our warehouses are always at their busiest this time of year, and it's a testament to the folks that work in them that we're able to keep up! Beyond orders, our repair team always receives loads of last minute requests to make sure that customers' existing machines are in holiday shape. These people always knock it out of the park, and we're so thankful for their hard work!

    But our teams don't stop there. From our commercial crew, to our accounting team, to our refurbishment department, we have so many people to be thankful for this holiday season. On top of all of that, we wouldn't have any of these wonderful people here if it weren't for folks like you! So thank you for spending some of your time with us this year, we can't wait to see what 2019 brings!

  • Guide to Holiday Roasts: Part 3

    Welcome to the final part in our holiday roasts series! Check our Part 1 and Part 2, and enjoy your holidays!

    Bluebeard Coffee Roasters - Snowbeard

    Bluebeard's Snowbeard features sweet, fruity and berry notes thanks to the natural-processed beans in the roast. Washed beans bring more traditional holiday notes of gingerbread and light spices as well. This is a warming, delicious roast that we love in a variety of brew methods. Try it today to wow the coffee lovers in your home!

    Anchorhead Coffee - Winter Warmer

    Winter Warmer is a wild roast from Anchorhead. Notes like "Sugarplum Fairy dreams" and "reindeer musk" are hilarious and silly, but this roast delivers on taste too. Featuring beans from Ethiopia and South America, this roast really brings the sweet notes. Everyone here loved it, and we're sure you will too. To top it all off, the bag is super fun!

    Batdorf and Bronson - Holiday Blend

    Batdorf's Holiday Blend is as classic as it gets. This simple roast features notes of dark chocolate and cherry liqueur. With a full body and those warm, sweet notes, we highly recommend this as a great one to share with friends and family. You can brew this roast a variety of ways, but we LOVED it as a drip brew especially!

    Intelligentsia Coffee - Celebration Blend

    For as iconic as oranges are as a holiday treat, it's surprising that we don't see more of this note in these holiday roasts. It's not totally absent from other coffees this season, but we still love the sneaky tangerine notes in this delicious blend for Intelligentsia. Other berry and spice notes combine with that tangerine to make a fruity, full flavored coffee that is perfect for this season.

    Brandywine Coffee Roasters - Seattle Coffee Gear Holiday Blend

    Last but not least! We couldn't not give a shout out to our collaboration with Brandywine Coffee Roasters. They helped us help them to do the roasting on a coffee that we're proud to put our name on. Rich jammy, cider notes meet the aforementioned orange flavors for a tasty, easy drinking brew. We can't help but love the wonderful artwork that Brandywine designed for the bag too!

     

  • Guide to Holiday Roasts - Part 2

    We took a look at some holiday roasts in part one of this feature, and we're back with several more! Check out these toasty brews for some tastes of the season!

    Espresso Republic - Cabin Fever Blend

    Espresso Republic offers an excellent holiday espresso roast in Cabin Fever. Listing tasting notes like root beer, molasses, and anise, this is definitely a unique roast. We love the holiday spice flavors present in this one for sure. The root beer notes listed come from a sweet nip at the front of the palate. This combined with the rich body and molasses notes, plus the aforementioned spice creates a very tasty brew! As we said, this is an espresso roast, so you'll want to enjoy it as such!

    Huckleberry Roasters - Sister Winter

    Sister Winter is a very simple roast, but perfect if you like a variety of brew methods. Press, pourover, and drip all offer a different take on these classic flavors. We even recommend this roast for superauto espresso machines! Chocolate and berry notes meet a toasty, pastry like aroma for a real crowd pleaser!

    Toby's Estate - Miracle on N. 6th St.

    Miracle on N. 6th St. is another one full of spice notes, but with a citrus twist. Celebrate the holiday citrus tradition with this roast, which features a blend of washed and natural process beans. We loved this one in a variety of brew methods too! Toby's lists notes of orange, cinnamon, and malbec, which we agree combine to create a satisfying holiday treat.

    49th Parallel Coffee - Holiday Edition

    49th lists fruity flavors like juice and apricot alongside a nutty roasted almond note. These flavors combine for a tasty mix of classic holiday flavors. We really love that this one offers that almond note, as the mild apricot flavors really combine in a mellow, but satisfying way. This one is definitely not designed for espresso, and we specifically recommend it as a filter brew. Great for a morning cup or a late night coffee beside the fire!

     

    Victrola Coffee Roasters - Holiday Blend

    Alongside cozy and cute bag art, this roast really satisfies. Victrola's tasting notes are chocolate, toasted pecan, walnut, and carrot cake. We love how varied and complex this blend is! The sweeter notes combine with the rich, nutty notes for a full bodied and delicious holiday roast. This roast uses natural process beans alongside washed process, so you'll notice hints of sweetness from the naturals and the nuttier notes coming from the washed beans. Recommended for filter brewing!

    Reverie Coffee Roasters - Christmas Cheer

    This one features delicious hot cocoa, baking spice, and roasted nut notes. These are really legendary holiday flavors and they combine for a predictable, but delicious blend here. We actually got peanut brittle notes from this one that we really loved! Definitely a richer blend, we recommend this one in a variety of different brew methods. And excellent all arounder that guests will love!

    Stay tuned, because we have ONE MORE holiday roast feature headed your way soon!

  • Video Roundup: 12/14/2018

    Hey everyone!

    We're back with another week of great videos. Check em out!

    First up, Gail gave us a look at some great gift ideas under $100!

    Then Gail tried some delicious Monin syrups paired with some of our favorite holiday roasts!

    Next, we shared some insight on several of our favorite 2018 stocking stuffers!

    Finally, we asked our staff to make an eggnog latte! It was a load of fun, check out the results below!

    We had a load of fun this week and we hope you will too! See you next week!

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