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Ready to Party!

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If you haven’t seen our social media yet be sure to check out the details related to our upcoming anniversaries.  We are celebrating two big Bergies anniversaries.  Our business is now 10 years old and our house is an amazing 100 years old. Yes, that’s why when you stand at the cash register you may have the feeling you are standing in a dip!

It is hard to believe it has been 10 years since we opened and the incredible changes in our Heritage District since day one.  We weren’t sure we could make a living with this coffee thing, but we sure never could have imagined what our business transformed into over the past 10 years. We started as novice coffee roasters trying hard to learn and perfect this craft and along the way we began to understand the bigger picture of the amazing benefits of creating a community space that people would come to not only for  great coffee, but more importantly to provide a peaceful place to meet others, do a little business or just spend some quiet time enjoying the flowers and birds in our garden.

Folks laugh when they hear Brian learned to roast coffee on a popcorn popper  from his supervisor at the airport and that Brian and Bruce’s barista training was a crash course with a Starbucks employee for a few hours before our soft opening.

Our soft opening consisted of emailing our friends and asking them to stop by during a two-hour period on a Sunday afternoon for a free drink and having over 100 people show up (many unknown to us they just saw a line and jumped in).

Unfortunately, I can’t find the photos of Brian and Bruce with sweat pouring down their faces from working so hard for over three hours trying to keep up with the drinks. Needless to say the first few years were not busy like that.  Brian and Bruce did everything without help for the first couple of years working 7 days a week.

Over the course of time we started to get help from family members just to get the guys a much-needed break. Eventually we hired our first non- family member barista, Christina Jackson.

Since then our staff has become an integral part of the success of Bergies and we will always be indebted to the wonderful array of great barista’s that have been part of our team.

We also are amazed at how many customers we still have that remember those first days.  Sandy rode her bike in one day and several years later told me that she remembers thinking this place is kind of cute I sure hope they can stay in business. Ha, ha we were thinking the same thing!

Our garden has also transformed from just gravel and a few trees to the beautiful oasis it currently is.  This is thanks to our amazing gardner, Lori Rick. Who loves our space like her own.

One quick blog is not enough space to say thank you to everyone who has helped Bergies become what it is today.  We never could have foreseen the relationships That have been built at this amazing little cottage.

I have often pondered what Forrest Clare would have thought of his little homestead today.  Last week I had the opportunity to meet his granddaughter and 2 great-granddaughters who came in for a drink at Bergies.  What a treat to hear them tell stories of coming to this little house after school to visit with Granny and to learn unbeknownst to their parents, how to drink coffee from Granny Clare! Their parents wouldn’t allow coffee drinking because they were told it could stunt their growth.  I’m so happy that myth has been debunked! It was great to know drinking coffee was an important thing for Granny Clare to teach her grandchildren.

The Clare’s conveyed that they are so proud and happy to have Bergies in their special family homestead.  They also shared they have regretted releasing the property after seeing the transformation of the Heritage district. We can all relate to those regrets.

As we look to the future we can’t say thank you enough to all of you that have been part of making Bergies a success.  Even though the Heritage District will continue to grow and change the Bergies team will stay committed to our core values of serving a great product in the unique Bergies experience.  We are proud to be a part of the history and future of this exceptional Town.

Our sincerest thanks to all,

Linda, Brian & Bruce Bergeson

Is There A Special Espresso Bean?

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Recently, I’ve been getting a lot of questions from customers about espresso. They usually ask something along the lines of, “how do I know if it’s an espresso bean?”. For various reasons, people want to get what they believe is a special bean used just for espresso.
Here’s the thing, there is no such thing as an espresso bean. The truth is, any bean can be used to make espresso. The idea that an “espresso bean” exists is really nothing more than a misnomer.
Basically, espresso is more of a brewing method than anything. But, what you use as the bean is really a matter of opinion. Now generally speaking, espresso tends to be roasted darker than most coffee – but it doesn’t have to be.
At Bergies for instance, we use a three bean blend. We prefer to roast it to a darker medium roast. If we decided to change one of our bean components, it would still be our espresso blend. What makes it espresso is when it is ground fine and put through the espresso machine. In fact, if you took our espresso blend home, it would make a fine regular brewed coffee.
If you’re looking for espresso to use in baking, meat rubs, or what not, it really doesn’t matter what bean you use. Any type of bean would be good for chocolate covered coffee beans, for example. So the next time you go on a search for espresso beans, remember you can use just about any roasted coffee bean that you’ve enjoyed in the past.

Giving Back Through Your Coffee Purchase

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A few years ago, Linda, Cristian and I had the opportunity to host members of the Ugandan Orphans Children’s Choir.

We were busy and grumpy about having to give up our weekend, but these kids needed a place to stay.  It was the Super Bowl weekend and  they were more interested in watching the Dennis the Menace movie with my wife than the game of the  year with me.

Needless to say it turned out to be a fabulous weekend and we were blessed by the experience. As a result, our family connected with Childcare Worldwide, an organization that empowers children in the developing world. Their mission is to feed and educate children in an effort to give them the tools they will need as adults to make their countries a better place.

This year Bergies has  jumped on board with this noble cause through coffee.  Uganda produces wonderful coffee so we have chosen to sell Uganda Bukonzo Select. This coffee is fair-trade organic (If you are not familiar with this term it means that workers are paid a fair wage for their coffee at the time of harvest).  This particular coffee is produced by 1200 members of the Bukonzo Tribe  on the slopes of the Rwenzori Mountain. We have kept the roast light, and  I hope you will find it quite tasty.

All of the profits from the sale of these beans will be donated to help families provide a source of income and food for themselves.  We will be purchasing things such as a small business pushcart, a pack-o’-piglets or a gang of goats.  Not handouts but opportunities to grow a small business.  For additional information on this organization check out:

childcareworldwide

As always we so greatly appreciate all of you. If you haven’t seen our Christmas video please take a minute and check it out. We had a lot of fun making it and hope you enjoy watching it.

On behalf of the Bergies team, thank you,

Brian

Happy Thanksgiving

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Just a quick note to wish all of you a very Happy Thanksgiving.
It’s hard to believe it’s the holiday season again. We are taking
time to reflect on how thankful we are for so many abundant
blessings in our lives. A huge part of our blessings are directly
related to this funky little place we call Bergies Coffee Roast House.
When we opened almost seven years ago we never could have
imagined what was in store for us. Not only have we learned so
much about the coffee business, roasting, running a small business,
being a part of this historic district, to name a few. We are most
grateful for the many relationships we have developed over the
years with you our amazing customers.
We can never say enough how much we appreciate the continued
support of our incredible Bergies community. It’s because of you
that we continue to strive to be better and hold on to what makes
this little “shack” a place people love to come to. We always want to
give you the best possible product, but even more importantly
continue to provide a place to be part of a community.
So think about leaving the electronic devices home this week
and come down and share face to face time with the people
who are important in your life, read a good book, meditate, do
homework , watch the birds or make an effort to meet a new friend.
Please join us this week in reflecting on all we have to be thankful
for right here in Gilbert, Arizona. A great place to visit or better yet live! Many thanks, Linda

Summer is over, Time to heat up your Coffee

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Now that summer is over and the weather is cooling down, it’s time to start shelving those cold coffee drinks. Instead, the time to has come to resume drinking your favorite hot coffee. There’s nothing like a hot cup of coffee with the winter season approaching.
In the morning, I like to have a nice medium to light roast coffee along with my breakfast. It’s a great compliment to the early morning routine. I typically like a good Latin American bean, such as Nicaraguan or Costa Rican. It’s a good way to get a jumpstart on your day.
As the day progresses, if you’re looking to get a mid-day pickup, a smooth, darker roast is often in order. Something like our Sumatran or Papua-New Guinean coffee is a solid choice. They’re a bit milder and less acidic. And, they’ll help you get through your afternoon and finish the workday.
After dinner, for those of you who crave that sweet, dessert drink, a nice mocha latte or caramel latte will hit the spot. But, if you don’t want to have caffeine that late in the day, you could always brew up our swiss water decaf bean. You’ll get the benefit of delicious coffee, without the caffeine to affect your sleep.
Finally, for those of you who really want to cap off the evening, our coffee goes great with Irish Whiskey, Kahlua, Bailey’s, and other tasty coffee-friendly liqueurs. Even without the alcohol, a hot cup of coffee will go a long ways towards warming your heart and soothing your soul.

Coffee on the Road

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We are at that time of the year when there is just one last holiday left before fall makes its appearance, and the cold of winter will quickly be the topic of our conversations.

This holiday for us is Labor Day, and like most people I know, we will spend a good part of our time sitting behind the wheel, driving long hours to enjoy the most of our last celebration of the summer.
If you are like me, then you too, enjoy a good cup of coffee on the road, pouring steaming hot from a thermos, and having the heady aroma of excellent coffee as your traveling companion. The secret of this is picking the right type of coffee for the road. Here are some of my suggestions.
Pick a coffee that is low in acid, which most often means a dark roasted type, like Italian, French or Spanish. Another option is a Sumatra that is roasted on the dark side, or perhaps some PNG, or
even some Hawaiian, as these three coffee beans have naturally low
acid, and are well known for their long cup life. If you don’t love at lease one of these three, then try a Peru, or even a Yemen Moka. Any other coffee runs the risk of going sour in your thermos just after half an hour of pouring it in.
Having a good thermos is as important as having the right bean with the right roast. It must keep a good, tight seal, keep your coffee hot, and be easy to use inside your vehicle. I know there are some fantastic travel mugs that hold a lot of coffee, but they don’t have the ability to keep your coffee hot for extended periods of time, while heading down the road to parts unknown! Having a smaller travel mug is a good idea too, since you are more likely to finish your cup while the coffee is at its best, and at the same time keeping your coffee in the thermos, where it will stay hot longer, with less risk of becoming bitter.
I hope these tips help you out, and make your trip an enjoyable one.
Ken Feighner aka “Coffee Ken”
Thank you Ken, our guest blogger. Check out Ken’s reviews
of coffee shops around the country at coffeeken.com

Local Road Trip

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A few weeks ago Linda & I decided we needed to take a short road trip, a day trip actually. Everyone knows that downtown Gilbert is where our heart is but we had heard so many outstanding reviews about the Musical Instrument Museum better known as “MIM” that we had to check it out. It doesn’t hurt that MIM has an award winning restaurant Cafe` Allegro. FYI our road trips are usually about great food!
The museum is overwhelming, in a positive way. Make sure you have the better part of the day to soak up the experience. MIM displays more than 6,000 instruments from around the globe. Each guest is given a wireless headset to wear throughout the museum. As you walk you through you venture into different regions of the world. In each region you will move from country to country.

Throughout, you find hundreds of displays with instruments and artists. Each display has a flat screen with a wireless hot spot. As you approach the display you will hear music and see instruments being played. It’s amazing! I just can’t do it justice in writing about it, you need to see if for yourself. Check it out online at mim.org .
Also, not to be missed is the Cafe Allegro, serving great tasting
cuisine all made from scratch. They pride themselves on using local, fresh ingredients. One of their local products just happens to be Bergies coffee. Obviously, another reason I love this place.
MIM partnered with BonAppetit Management Co. to form Cafe Allegro and under the direction of executive chef, Chris Lenza they create dishes that are local, regional and global. We were fortunate to be able to sample most of the days offerings during our visit and they were not only delicious but beautifully presented by the terrific staff. A big thank you to all for the special attention to detail that made our visit even better.
So do yourself a favor, if you’re looking for a great day trip out of the heat and perfect for all ages, head to the MIM at 4725 E. Mayo Blvd in Phoenix for a wonderful day of music, art, history and of course great food.
As always we appreciate you, Brian

Field Trip Friday Gilbert

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In case you missed it local station News Channel 3 came to Gilbert last week as part of their summer field trip Fridays. Bergies had the wonderful opportunity to be their host for the four hour program. It was great to be a part of the show that highlighted some of what makes our Gilbert community special.

We were honored to have visits from our Mayor John Lewis, police and fire representatives, in addition to other city personnel who work hard for the benefit of our community. Not only were local attractions like our world renowned Riparian Preserve highlighted but we really got the chance to showcase many of the new and existing offerings right here in our historic downtown.

This area of Gilbert may be known for all of our amazing dining, (we have had 5 new eating establishments open in just the past year with more to come in the near future) but we have so much more than great food to offer. St Xavier University will have its grand opening on August 4th, a first for Gilbert in regard to degree level education.
We also have a state of the art photo lab and art studio, antique shops, and a one of a kind party supply/studio store right here in downtown. In addition, you can workout here (recommended after partaking in all of the good food) get a tattoo, get salon services or have your car worked on just to name a few activities outside of eating. Coming soon we will also welcome a new retail shop named “Rocket Fizz” that specializes in throwback candies and an unbelievable variety of soda pop.
As exciting as all the new change is we hope you don’t forget about what this district is really all about, our heritage. We have a fantastic opportunity to learn all about it right here by taking time to visit the Gilbert Historical Museum . If you haven’t yet checked it out you are missing out on a gem. The museum not only has great artifacts on display it has a knowledgable staff that provides great service and education. If your lucky, while you are there you may also be able to observe the quilters that meet regularly at the museum and witness an amazing art project in progress.
I believe the thing that makes our area of Gilbert truly special is our connection to the past. There is a walking tour of the historical buildings in our district with many of them marked with plaques that give a brief history of the building. Better yet most of these buildings owners are working the business’ and on any given day you might be able to catch them for a minute or two to share the history of their building. So I challenge you to look a little deeper next time your here so much can be learned from study of our past!

I hope to see you soon at Bergies to not only experience our great drinks and atmosphere, but to also appreciate whats great in our community. Thanks as always for your continued support we couldn’t stay here without you.

If you missed our clip on news channel 3 and you want to check it out here is the link
www.azfamily.com/clip/11669599/bergies-coffee-roast-house
Linda

Coffee Supply Chain – From farm to your mouth

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As I sit on a quiet morning and enjoy a cup of Bergies fresh roasted coffee, I sometimes need to remind myself the long extensive journey these green coffee beans traveled to get to my cup. Years ago I wasn’t concerned at the least about where and how my coffee ended up in my presence, but now having been in the industry for some years I have learned that getting coffee is a huge and drawn out process.

This long extensive journey traveled is know as the Coffee Supply Chain. It all starts on a farm, usually in some third world country, along the equator between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn. These farmers work hard to grow and pick the coffee from the trees. At this point in the supply chain the wages and the way of life are fairly primitive. The coffee beans then travel to a mill where they will be processed for export. Bean processing is usually done in two manners, dry process or wet process. From the mill the beans are transported to a port where they get ready to travel thousands of miles by sea. Export, insurance, and freight fees as well as inspections must all be taken care of by the coffee trader or importer before it can leave port.

Once the beans reach their destination, they must sit and await additional inspections as imports. After they’ve been cleared, the beans go to the trader or dealer who then transports the beans to your local roaster. Finally, the beans are roasted and consumed by happy coffee drinkers everywhere.
So the next time you’re sitting on your patio drinking a fresh cup of coffee, take a moment to appreciate all that has gone into getting that cup of coffee in your hands. A lot of hard labor and long distances have gone into the fresh roasted beans we have at Bergies.