We are glad to introduce our readers with Garrett Oden, a Coffeeholic from Lubbock. He can simply be called as a legend in coffee industry as he is responsible for letting many people learn the Barista Skills through his site called CoffeeBrewGuides. The site has a significant presence on the web when you will be searching for Coffee Brewing. We had a small talk with him and I am glad to present him to my readers on FriedCoffee.
1) Hi Garrett, please introduce yourself and tell us how did your Coffee World started.
Hello! I’m Garrett Oden, manager of Yellow House Coffee in Lubbock, Texas and coffee writer on the side. Three years ago I had my first cup of coffee that blew my mind. A friend invited my college roommate and I to visit him at his new job at a coffee shop. We were hesitant, since neither of us enjoyed coffee even a little bit, but we eventually gave in and stopped by one night. We tried a French Press of an Ethiopian Yirgacheffe coffee and were blown away at the flavor. I distinctly remember notes of apple and brown sugar in that coffee. It was the first time coffee didn’t taste like burned, bitter garbage to me. Inspired and curious, I started a blog to document my coffee journey and eventually ended up managing a coffee house.
2) So, how do you like your coffee? Which beans are most preferred?
I prefer medium roast coffees, but can appreciate anything that doesn’t taste like carbon. I’ve had some great floral and sweet South/Central American coffees that are beginning to stick out as my preferred taste profile. The Honduras Amazonas we’re serving at the shop currently is very sweet. I love it!
3) What’s the Coffee Culture around you?
West Texas coffee culture is just beginning to rise at an astounding rate. We have 3 specialty shops in Lubbock and 5 more in a town about two hours away. We’re several hours away from the nearest metroplex though, so we tend to be on the late receiving end of cultural trends and preferences. We kind of like it that way though; it gives us time to analyze and adapt trends we see.
4) You have tested all the methods of coffee brewing; which method seemed best to you? (Please detail)
I use my Hario V60 almost every day. I love the ritual motion of pour overs and rarely drink more than 8oz of coffee at a time. The V60 is perfect for my scenario. I use 16g of coffee and 272g of water (1:17 ratio) and a medium grind. The whole thing takes me about two and a half minutes, the perfect amount of time to inhabit that moment of peace. Also I owe one of the best french press coffee maker which is used occasionally.
5) What is the best investment on coffee equipment for a newbie?
You’re only as good as your grinder. There are some good hand grinders out there that don’t break the bank. They may take some elbow grease, but your final cup will be so much better than if you had used a blade grinder.
6) Which is your favorite cafe nearby you and why do you like that?
I’m biased, but my favorite cafe to visit when I’m not working is Yellow House. We offer a variety of drinks and make all our pastries in house. Our shop is on the small side, so everyone gets to know each other, which means there’s always someone with a familiar smile at the table next to you.
7) Excluding coffee, what are your other hobbies and passion?
I enjoy photography, writing, taking casual strolls on my bike, reading, and watching movies with my wife. She’s the best.
8) Any advice to Friedcoffee?
Never stop learning and never believe you’ve figured out coffee. The more you learn, the more obvious it should be that there’s so much you don’t yet understand.