Friday, February 27, 2009

Coffee Cures for Cold Sufferers

It's the cold and flue season and the manic weather isn't helping sinus and allergy sufferers. However, coffee lovers can take a snuffy sigh of relief. Coffee could possible ease symptoms associated with colds, according to an article I found on BNET, the Business Network Web site.

The article titled, The 55 Best Herbal Remedies, was first publied in September 2004 in Natural Health magazine.

The article cited coffee as a possible herbal remedy for pain relief and as a decongestant for colds, flus and asthma.

Excerpts from "The 55 Best Herbal Remedies":

Coffee for Pain Relief
Anacin and Excedrin claim that their "extra ingredient" provides greater pain relief. What is it? Caffeine. Many reports, including one in the Archives of Internal Medicine, have shown that adding about 65 milligrams of caffeine to aspirin, ibuprofen or acetaminophen increases pain relief by around 40 percent. Caffeine blocks pain perception, has pain-relieving action, and elevates mood, which also helps minimize pain. Next time you have a headache, wash down your favorite pain pill with coffee or tea for more relief.

Coffee as a Decongestant in Colds, Flu and Asthma
Caffeine opens narrowed bronchial tubes, according to Joe and Teresa Graedon, authors of The People's Pharmacy. According to a report in the Annals of Epidemiology, the odds of experiencing current asthma symptoms were reduced 29 percent for subjects who drank coffee on a regular basis when compared with non-coffee drinkers.

Do you agree with these statements from "The 55 Best Herbal Remedies" article? Share your thoughts here!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Are you addicted to coffee? Vote in the poll!

The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot wants to know how addicted to coffee you are! Share your answers in the newest poll (located along the right side column)!

Cast your vote now, there is only 7 days left!

Poll Results: There's a Tie for The 'Burgh's Favorite Coffee Drink!

The results for The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot's second poll are in and Mocha and Black Coffee both tied for Pittsburgher's Favorite Coffee Drink.

I don't really enjoy Black Coffee at all. I prefer to have my coffee with some cream and sugar, because I find Black Coffee itself to be a bit too bitter and acidic. However, Mochas may be one of my favorite coffee drinks.

I never successfully made a Mocha myself at home. I usually buy them from coffee shops. My favorite coffee shop Mocha is probably, Starbuck's. Starbuck's Mocha has just the right ratio of coffee and chocolate. It's not too overly rich, but it's also not bland.

Be sure to keep a look out for The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot's newest poll! And make sure to cast your vote!

Do you agree with the latest poll results? Share your opinion here!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Mardi Gras Coffee

Happy Mardi Gras!

It's Mardi Gras, the carnival celebration signifying the day prior to Lent's fasting season. Are you planning on throwing a Fat Tuesday festival of your own? If you are The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot has some great recipes to share with you on this indulgent day.

The celebration of Mardi Gras and coffee go hand and hand. New Orleans, the central city for the celebration is also one of the first cities to start providing coffee to the rest of North America. Read more info on coffee's journey from New Orleans to the rest of the country here! Since, New Orleans and coffee have such a rich history a Mardi Gras party is not complete until the coffee is brewed.

Party hosts may want to serve Orleans Coffee, a festive spiced coffee drink for the over-21 revelers.

A Mardi Gras themed party would not be complete without Chicory Coffee. Chicory is made from the root of the endive plant and has been used as a coffee filter and as a way to enhance coffee's flavor in New Orleans for hundreds of years. Chicory is a Louisiana tradition for the experimental party guest.

For more New Orleans recipes visit the New Orleans Cuisine blog.

Tell The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot how you celebrated Mardi Gras 2009!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

10 Signs of a Coffee Lover

1. Your dream vacation is a trip to Columbia to meet Juan Valdez.

2. Your collection of coffee cups is featured on your MySpace page.

3. You chew coffee beans instead of gum.

4. All your kids are named "Joe".

5. One of the most important things you look for in a new car is the size of cup holder.

6. You've seriously considered mortgaging your home to start a Dunkin' Donuts.

7. Your goal is to amount to a hill-of-beans.

8. When someone asks, "How are you?" you reply, "Good to the last drop."

9. You named your cats Latte and Mocha.

10. You look forward to the daily grind.

*Courtesy of Chicken Soup for the Coffee Lovers Soul: Celebrating the Perfect Blend- by: Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, and Theresa Peluso (2007)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Coffee Quiz: What Kind of Coffee are You?

You Are a Soy Latte
At your best, you are: free spirited, down to earth, and relaxed

At your worst, you are: dogmatic and picky

You drink coffee when: you need a pick me up, and green tea isn't cutting it

Your caffeine addiction level: medium

I took this fun quiz and I am a soy latte. Take the quiz to find out what kind of coffee you are!

Share your results with The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot!

21st Street Coffee Comment Response

21st Street Coffee & Tea left this comment on my previous blog entry announcing the Pittsburgh Coffee Pot's first poll results.

Gloria- thanks for the nice mention. In my opinion if we are talking about the best "coffee" in Pittsburgh you should include (in no particular order) Aldo, Blue Horse, and Tazza d'Oro. I don't think it will be long before you include Voluto in that group as well. By my criteria, these are all places where you can get a great shot of espresso, enjoy a black coffee, and have a meaningful discussion with the knowledgable baristas.

I definitely agree that there are several coffee shops in Pittsburgh where coffee lovers can enjoy a countless number of great coffee drinks. 21st Street Coffee and the other shops mentioned in their comment, along with many other shops, offer some of the "best" coffee. And The Pittsburgh Coffee Shop will no doubt be reviewing and highlighting everyone of the best 'Burgh shops and what they each offer!

Keep checking The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot for polls, interactive posts, shop reviews and more!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Vote in New Poll!

What is your favorite coffee drink?

Vote in The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot's new poll!! (located on the right side column)

Hurry...there's only 7 days left to vote!

Poll Results!: 21st Street Coffee &Tea Voted Best 'Burgh Coffee Shop

The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot's first poll has come to a close and the results are in!

Bloggers voted 21st Street Coffee & Tea the best 'Burgh coffee shop. I have, of course, been to 21st Street Coffee before and in my opinion it is one of Pittsburgh's most underrated coffee shops.

It is located in the heart of The Strip District ( at 50 21st Street, Pittsburgh PA 15222) and the shop also has a smaller location inside the Frick Building Lobby, Downtown (437 Grant Street, Pittsburgh PA 15219). 21st Street Coffee's Strip District location is a cool and calm contrast to the common bustling and busy Strip District. The coffee shop is an earthy oasis destination, the perfect place to cool down in the summer and to warm up on a chilly Pittsburgh day.

The shop's employees are welcoming and friendly. And above all the shop's menu is a coffee lovers dream. I have of course tried their coffee and I've had their espresso. The shop's use of the French Press to brew their coffee results in a surprisingly refreshing and clear cup of Joe.

Also, tea lovers do not fret! Take it from me and my first hand experience, 21st Street Coffee's iced chai latte is excellent.

**Read more info about 21st Street Coffee & Tea in an article I wrote for Point Park University's newspaper, The Globe, here!

Kiva Han and Crazy Mocha both tied for second place in the poll.
An anonymous blogger wrote in their vote for E
nrico's Tazza d'oro, Aldo Coffee and Voluto Coffee.

Attention bloggers! Be sure to keep an eye out for The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot's next poll...coming soon!

Did you agree or disagree with poll results? Comment about them!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Coffee Liqueur

On February 3 I celebrated my 21st birthday. It was a memorable celebration which included spending quality time with my family and boyfriend. Since this birthday is the last big bash (til 30 that is...ugh) it also included lots of treats, gifts and of!

My cousins, Denice, Bob and their kids, bought me a set of clear, glass coffee mugs, a selection of flavored coffees and a bottle of irish cream liqueur.

I found a recipe on the Drinks Mixer Web site for an Irish Paddy. An Irish Paddy is a cocktail recipe that uses an irish cream liqueur, creme de cacao and green creme de menthe. Watch the video below to see how to mix this drink!

More Cocktail Recipes videos at

Another gift I received was a Starbucks gift set that included a large mug and a bottle of Starbucks Coffee Liqueur. Starbucks Coffee Liqueur tastes like a coffee syrup and is great for mixing cocktails, adding to coffee and making sweet treat drinks. There are countless coffee recipes for the responsible drinker.

My 21st birthday was very enjoyable and I couldn't have asked it to go any better.

Share your best birthday stories with The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot Blog!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Vote in Coffee Poll!

What is your favorite Pittsburgh coffee shop?

Vote! in the poll located in the right side column of The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot!

There is only 5 days left to vote!

Refrigerated Coffee

Over this past weekend my mother has been brewing coffee in the morning for me. This is a rare occurrence. She never voluntarily brews coffee for me. When I'm making coffee I usually only make the amount I know I am going to drink, which is about one or two cups. My mom, however, brewed enough for four or five cups. She assumed that she would be drinking it too. Needless to say, we failed to finish the pot. In an attempt to avoid being wasteful we saved the remaining coffee in the refrigerator. I have since heated up and drank the "left-overs".

I was surprised that there was not much of a difference between the fresh-brewed coffee and the one/two day old coffee at all. The flavor was less pungent and the smell of the coffee being heated in the microwave was less intoxicating. Aside from that the "old" coffee was just as good, for me at least. It reminded me of how a cup of coffee tastes when you order it late at night, after hours, at the local 24-hour eatery or so. And they serve you the last drop of coffee that had been resting in the coffee pot, brewed some time before.

When I realized how pleased I was drinking the refrigerated coffee I wondered how long could coffee last in the refrigerator before going bad?

The Coffee Detective, an on-line community that provides useful facts and advice for coffee makers and lovers provided some interesting information on the topic.

The Coffee Detective also stated to prevent coffee from spoiling in the fridge to seal it in a tight container and to use it within a week of brewing.

So, how do you spot spoiled coffee?

From personal experience, when your refrigerated coffee has mold growing on it it's not safe to drink. Throw it out and brew a fresh pot!

Does anyone have an interesting story about brewing coffee? Share it here! Have a question? Don't be afraid to ask!

Barista Competition Ends: One local barista places in finals

The Mid-Atlantic and Northeast Barista Competition ended this weekend with Pittsburgh placing one barista in the challenge.

Dana Waelde, a shop owner at Crazy Mocha, wowed the audience with her espresso technique. Read more about her competition success here!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Monday, February 2, 2009

Coffee Events in Pittsburgh

Attention Coffee Lovers! There are some exciting coffee events coming up this month in Pittsburgh.

Check them out...

Coffee, Tea & Teens
North Hills Youth Ministry Counseling Center
February 6, 2009 at 10:00 a.m.

These events are held on the first Friday of each month. It is a discussion group designed to provide resources for parents of kids ages 12 to 18. This month's subject is "Resolving Conflict". Admission is $5.

Unblurred: First Fridays on Penn
Penn Avenue Arts District
February 6, 2009 at 5:00 p.m.

"Unblurred" is a monthly event that opens the Penn Avenue Arts District for adults and children.
This month showcases the newest coffee shop on Penn Avenue, Voluto Coffee, as well as several other events.

Event information courtesy of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Web site.

I also found another very interesting local coffee event. It's called Coffee Wars and it will be taking place February 6-8 at the Pittsburgh Marriott North in Cranberry. This is a coffee competition sponsored by the Specialty Coffee Association of America. Baristas from across the country compete by making a variety of coffee drinks (which are also available for the audience to taste). Tickets cost $10 or $8 if purchased in advance.

If anyone attends one of these events please tell us all about it here at The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot Blog!

My Favorite Coffee Mate

Hello all,

First I would like to thank Jess and Sarah for commenting on my last post . They both shared how they too enjoy the camaraderie between coffee drinkers that I enjoy.

Another thing I enjoy, as a coffee connoisseur, is the ability to experiment with a variety of coffee flavors and added ingredients. One of my favorite things to add to a cup of coffee is a flavored creamer.

Coffee and cream go hand and hand and the more decadent and unique the creamer is the more I desire to try it. My favorite brand of coffee creamer is Coffee-Mate. I also like to try some of the International Delight creamers.

In the fall, I like to use a pumpkin coffee creamer. During the holiday season I alternate between gingerbread, peppermint and, my personal favorite, eggnog. Right now, I have a hazelnut creamer in my refridgerator.

But, my all time favorite coffee creamer is Coffee-Mate's World Cafe Collection- Italian Sweet Creme. It's not too rich that it's overpowering and it's not too dull that you can't taste the flavor. When I'm pressed for time or if I don't feel like making a coffee drink that is more involved I'll make a cup of french roast coffee and I'll add a tablespoon of Italian Sweet Creme creamer. It's just right!

You can view all of Coffee-Mate's products, ingredients and nutritional information at the Coffee-Mate Official Web site.

Share all of your favorite coffee mates -creamers, sugars and more! On The Pittsburgh Coffee Pot Blog!!