Archive for the ‘Coffee’ Category

Hasbean Discount & Sufferfest Giveaway!

Posted: March 11, 2011 by danjus10 in Coffee, Cycling
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For those of you following us at Team Has Bean Cycling (Twitter : @team_hasbean) You’ll know that we’ve been suffering (From Zero to Hero) for our collective challenge – the Tour of Flanders 2011.

But we also like to prepare/debrief with a quality brew of Steve’s finest hasbean coffees from around the globe – single origin, blends, espresso, aeropress, French press, you name it!

So now you know what we’ve been up to we would like to give you the opportunity to try it as well.

 Steve from hasbean.co.uk has kindly offered 5% off his entire range of quality coffees at http://hasbean.co.uk 

 

AND!!

As an added bonus if you purchase coffee (beans or grinds) before Sunday April 10, 2011 from http://hasbean.co.uk and enter the coupon code “CYCLE”  you go into the draw for a sufferfest (http://thesufferfest.com) video of your choice .

So do yourself a favour – get some great coffee freshly roasted delivered to your door and be in it to win it!

Good Luck and always remember “Life’s too short for bad Coffee!”

Team Has Bean Cycling.

 

 

n.b.  Winners will be contacted by hasbean.co.uk via the email address provided in the order.

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Time to find out whether five weeks of early morning and late evening hours spent labouring over the Sufferfest, coupled with longer weekend rides have started to transform an overworked and unfit middle aged dad into a honed Athlete, capable of riding 260km over Belgian cobbles in a single day.

With the riders prepared for any conditions other than ice, Saturday morning’s 3 inches (75mm) of snow however was a bad start.

After most of the squad and support teams had sampled espresso from Has Bean’s Bolivian San Ignacio (the no 4 rider adhering to English breakfast tea) we were therefore confined to the Soigneur’s cellar (BTC), whilst the south of England basked in paddling pools and 18 deg heat (at least that’s what I imagined).

With two turbos side by side, we sweated our way through an hour each, made

Angels

Rob and Chris in the BTC

bearable and more intense by Sufferfest ‘Angels‘. The second pair of riders having the distinct advantage of my helpful commentary, warning them a few seconds before each required acceleration, attack, or change of backing track.

‘Angels’ culminates in a brutal sprint to the finish on the D211 (colloquially known as Alpe D’Huez). On this occasion however some riders put more into the sprint than others. (To be honest, this wasn’t really a fair contest, with me naively believing 10/10 on the Sufferfest effort scale meant, ‘eyeballs out, give it every last ounce of your fibre and some’, rather than, ‘up the effort slightly, whimper a bit to make it look hard, but ensure you hold a little bit back for the afternoon’).

After a brief recovery, over Sheffield’s finest roast pork, stuffing, crackling and lard rolls, the snow had relented. By 3:00pm we were able to set off for four quick laps of Damflask reservoir, and an interminable climb at up to 20% gradient (28% according to Chris?) to High Bradfield. After a demoralising session for the no. 4 rider of ‘ball’ formation riding and failed sprint lead outs (actually – the lead out bit was OK), we were done for day one.

The evening’s entertainment included Belgian beer (further Flanders training), and a new definition of the word ‘splinter’ courtesy of viewing the action from the Manchester velodrome.

Day two, and the team was woken with the Soigneur’s finest porridge, Has Bean’s Ethiopian Ogawa Natural as French press (even the number four rider partaking in part), and four neat food parcels and gels laid out for the 42 mile hilly loop of the Peak District that lay ahead.

Mam Nick

Team Has Bean crest Mam Nick

Out on the road, a clear highlight was the lung rasping ascent of Mam Nick (317m at 11% – note to self: compact chain set needed on winter trainer), to a misty and snow swept plateau, before the largely 25% descent of Winnats Pass. Also relevant was the marginally improved coherence in group riding, due to the number 4 rider occasionally holding a wheel.

Reflecting on a great training camp and memorable weekend – there is still much work to do in six weeks – but so far, so good, and motivation is high. Training ride 3 to follow in four weeks, further progress needed.

Team Has Bean

Blatant publicity shot for our sponsor...

I consider myself quite lucky in that my job takes me around the country on a semi-regular basis.  While my destinations aren’t always glamourous (Basingstoke anyone??), I do enjoy getting out of the office and meeting some of the people who work in the same field as me.  Alas, this travel often leaves me with a sour taste in my mouth- and it has nothing to do with the work.

Friends of mine will attest that ‘going out for a coffee’ isn’t really as simple as it sounds.  I tend to veto cafes unless a) I recognise the barista, b) I recognise the coffee being used and c) I can see that the coffee is being ground ‘on demand’.  This means that my ‘going out for a coffee’ is reduced to a select number of cafes that come up to scratch.  Living in London means I am now spoilt for choice when it comes to speciality coffee shops. The business district is now loaded with fine spots and I have Camden Coffee House next to my office so they get me through long afternoons, but 3 years ago it was a very different story with just a handful of suitable cafes in all of London.

So, when it comes to travelling I’m in a bit of a bind.  Most cities I head to will maybe have one or two decent coffee shops, but as I often arrive either first thing in the morning or last thing at night, I don’t have time to mess about drinking bad coffees.  So if I can’t find a suitable cafe on my beanhunter app, then I either don’t get a coffee or I have to make my own.

Making your own brews on the road has been a bit of an eye-opener for me.  But its easy now that I follow the approach of Mark Prince the real coffeegeek.  Here’s my travelling kit:

1. Beans.

I tend to take a lighter coffee, something a bit fruiter or brighter than I would drink at home.  This is because I don’t make espresso on the road so need to shift my bean profile.  The last two weeks have been Kenyan and Ethiopian beans from our main man Steve at Has Bean.  Both of these are fruity, zingy and are something diffierent to my usual cup.

2. Grinder

It’s no good having great beans if you have already ground them up and they are going stale in the bag.  My grinder of choice is the Hario Skerton which requires a bit of elbow grease (about 100 turns to get my dose ) certainly helps wake me up in the morning.  As a grinder I think it meets my needs but if you need a very coarse or very fine grind, I think it’s lacking a bit.  When set up for very coarse, there is far too much play in the ceramic burrs which means inconsistencies in the grind (which means a poor cup at the end).

3. Scales

Bag of Has Bean, Hario Grinder, Aeropress and the final cup

While it looks like I am in an illicit trade travelling with scales, it’s the only way to make sure you are on top of the coffee.  When you are only making a small amount of coffee, putting in a few too many or not enough grams changes the taste considerably.

4. Aeropress

If you’ve not seen an aeropress, just think of Austin Powers and his Swedish pump! It’s basically a cylinder, a small piece of filter paper and then a plunger piece to force the steeping brew through the filter paper.  I really like it because it produces a small intense coffee and takes just 30 seconds to press.  Unlike a French Press, there is no sediment in the cup so you get a cleaner taste.

So, travelling with work can still mean waking up with a good brew.  By now you all know when we say ‘Life is too short for bad coffee’ we mean it.

Team Has Bean – Looking the “Business”

Posted: February 7, 2011 by drchrispower in Coffee, Cycling, Flanders
Tags: ,

All good teams need a good kit, Team Has Bean is no different – We hope that it will get us noticed out there on the road (by drivers and cyclists alike – safety first people!). 

The good folks at Bioracer UK, purveyors of quality cycling kit, have pulled out the stops for us and helped us design a jersey that we think will make us stand out on the cobbles of Flanders, the hills of England and the mountains of Europe.  

Also for those with their fingers on the pulse – we have forgone a radio pocket in line with new UCI regulations.  Our team meeting was a heated affair re: safety of riders but in the end we decided that Dan and Chris are loud enough to communicate across any peleton.

And remember as always – “Lifes too short for Bad Coffee”.

Team Has Bean. Just one goal

Posted: February 6, 2011 by mickflanders in Coffee, Cycling, Flanders

So now that you know a bit of Team Has Bean’s short history, let’s take a closer look at what we are hoping to achieve.

Our goal is to complete the Tour of Flanders cyclosportive (the pro 260km version) as a team and in good spirits. Sounds easy doesn’t it?  I mean Belgium is pancake flat right? 

How hard can it be I hear you ask.  Well, yes, for the most part, Belgium IS pancake flat and for the first 120km of the event we’ll be on those flat roads, doing our best to keep the pace up, avoiding road furniture and all while conserving energy for later in the day. But Belguim ISNT really flat – it has the Ardennes range in the south and while it’s no French Alps we won’t be crossing it once, we’ll be riding over it no less than 19 times. Sure these crossings will be short, but they will most certianly be sharp.  Gradients in excess of 15% are common, but its the cobbled climbs that will drain the legs and force all but the strongest riders to walk.

Thats it – we have just one goal and all our training is aimed at achieving this.  But of course we would be pretty boring if that’s all we were interested in. So what else is Team Has Bean about?

Good coffee! Steve from Has Bean Coffee has kindly agreed to assist the team with our kit (you’ll get to see some feching photos soon), but actually, he’s been helping us out for much longer than that – he just didn’t know it.  We are borderline obsessed with good coffee. Steve’s (@hasbean) commitment and passion to specialty coffee is peerless.  Espressos, Aeropress’, Machiattos, Cortados, French Press- we drink it provided its got Has Bean beans in it.

After completing the event, we’ll be hanging around the region for an extra day as the pro riders will be doing the exact same route the following day.  We are looking forward to seeing how much more work we need to do to get Team Has Bean a professional license…Team LE-O-PARD TREK watch out!

So, if you want to follow the exploits of 4 average guys riding a non-average event, then follow us on twitter at @team_hasbean for regular updates.

Team Has Bean – A New Paradigm in Cycling

Posted: February 6, 2011 by drchrispower in Coffee, Cycling, Flanders

What is Team Has Bean?

Team Has Bean is a new way of thinking, a new way of life, a new paradigm if you will….blah, blah, blah.

Lets face it, we’re not Team LAY-OH-PARD-TREK.

Team Has Bean is 4 blokes, with two passions: riding their bikes and the pursuit of good coffee.  In the back end of 2010, we came up with a plan: to take on a cycling challenge, to ride the route of the Tour of Flanders, the Ronde Van Vlaanderen.  One of the monuments of cycling, a Spring Classic.  And over 150 miles of riding.  In one day.

So we signed up for the ride, we started training, we drank coffee, and we had a thought.  We love cycling, we love coffee – why don’t we try and link the two?  Why don’t we see if we can get some sponsorship, make this a bit of a project?

It didn’t take long for us to think who to contact.  If you love coffee, real coffee (not the ‘fresh’ coffee you get on the high street from certain large ’boutique’ outlets, in cups the size of buckets) you’ll soon gravitate to Has Bean Coffee.

 You won’t find a company that loves coffee as much as Has Bean.  No, lives coffee as much as Has Bean.  So we contacted Steve at Has Bean with a proposition: we’ll ride the Tour of Flanders sportive, which attracts up to 30,000 enthusiasts from across europe, in kit emblazoned with your brand, if you’ll just stump up a bit of cash to help pay for the kit.  He’s a clever bloke Steve, he said yes.

So that’s the story.  Four average blokes, with a love of cycling, and a love of coffee who are going to train, train some more, train some more and then ride the route of a pro race in Belgium, in April.  In the wind.  Over cobbles.  This will be our story…

Chris, Rob, Dan, Mick.  Team Has Bean.

Team Has Bean