Did you know that every time you enjoy a coffee at The Treehouse you are supporting an environmentally and ethically considerate supply chain that not only is carbon neutral but also improves the lives of smallholder coffee growers in South and Central America and Africa?
We won’t lie, a lot of caffeine was consumed in the name of research before we discovered one of the most interesting and dynamic coffee roasteries in Ireland, Dublin-based Farmhand Coffee.
We take our coffee seriously. When we started working on the menu for our new outdoor takeaway cabin, we went the extra mile to source coffee made exclusively for us that would deliver great flavour and honour our commitments to reducing our carbon footprint and supporting local communities.
Farmhand Coffee is a collaboration between Garrett Fitzgerald (of Adare) and James Boland, both of Brother Hubbard fame, and their head barista Peter Szaloki, who now runs Farmhand Coffee. We love their coffee and their ethics.
Peter is passionate about coffee, people and the environment. He works with smallholders and local co-operatives across the globe – such as Colombia, Brazil, Peru, Rwanda and Ethiopia – in order to source the best possible green coffee beans which he imports and roasts in small batches in the roastery in Capel Street, Dublin. This enables Peter to be exacting about the quality of the coffee he buys and ensures that the farmer is paid a fair price for his or her crop.
By paying a fair price for the crop, Farmhand Coffee is supporting local growers and their families, enabling them to afford many of the things we take for granted such as education and healthcare. Farmhand partners also invest in their local communities, supporting a wide range of locally focussed positive initiatives (for example, they recently worked with a Peruvian co-operative focussed on supporting the participation of women and children in education).
Farmhand views coffee as a gift from nature and honours that by offsetting its carbon footprint through its support of NGO Vita Ireland which is helping communities in Africa to adapt to climate change and build sustainable futures through access to clean water, food security, and energy. Their packaging is also fully compostable or recyclable.
The Farmhouse roasting process is both a science and an art, perfected long before the green coffee beans arrive in Ireland. Like wine, the flavour of coffee is influenced by where and how it is grown, harvested, stored, roasted and served. Every season Peter receives crop samples which he roasts to get a sense of their taste and what he needs to do to the beans to bring out the best flavour profile.
The blend we brew here at The Treehouse is made from 60% Colombian and 40% Brazilian beans and is custom roasted exclusively for us. It has a versatile flavour profile that tastes great as anything from an espresso to a latte. You literally won’t taste anything like it!
As well as featuring Farmhand Coffee on the menu at The Treehouse, we also stock packs of Farmhand Coffee for you to enjoy at home.
THE PERFECT SERVE
Some people believe the fancier the equipment or machine, the better the cup of coffee. That just isn’t true. Here are some of Peter’s tips for making the best cup of coffee ever using a simple French press, also known as a cafetière:
- Buy the best quality coffee you can.
- Do yourself a flavour favour and buy a coffee grinder so you can freshly grind whole beans.
- Swill the pot with boiling water to heat it before adding the coffee grinds.
- Use a ratio of 30g finely ground coffee to 510g water.
- When you add the hot water (just off boiling point) to the coffee, let it brew for 5 minutes – at this stage, then break the “crust” with a spoon and take a good smell (this is when the coffee will release some of its best aromas!) – then let brew for another 4 minutes (so total brew time 9 minutes).
- It is very important that you don’t overly depress the plunger –just push it down about 1-2cm below the top level of the water (rather than pushing it down fully) so when you pour, the plunger more acts like a filter/sieve (that the brewed coffee passes through) rather than to fully plunge the coffee – this means the coffee that ends up in the cup is “cleaner” and doesn’t have so many coffee particles in it (otherwise the texture will be somewhat “rough”) – and then pour very slowly!