Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Coffee is Beautiful: The Katz Club Diner & Rising Star Pourover Coffee Tasting


Hello everyone!
I'm officially back from all things #EatDrinkWedding and would like to start with a shout out to my AWESOME guest bloggers Craveable ClevelandBite Buff and Call Me Trouble. Be sure to check out their blogs!

I promise to do a wedding related post - we just got our professional photos back and I'm picking out some to share. Stay tuned!

I was so happy when Emily from The Katz Club Diner contacted me about a special coffee tasting that was being held AFTER the wedding. I would have been so sad if I had to miss this one! I'm a HUGE fan of Chef Doug Katz and have been dying to pay a visit to his latest venture, The Katz Club Diner, since it opened. 

It's located in the two diner cars located at 1975 Lee Road in Cleveland Heights north of Cedar. This location was underutilized for years and I was anxious to see what the latest incarnation looked like.

It's separated into two distinct areas: a traditional diner and a dark and sexy cocktail lounge.

We started off the evening in the diner car where we met the barista manager Theresa and Andre from Rising Star Coffee - two extremely knowledgeable coffee professionals.


I'm a devout coffee lover and was looking forward to learning about a way to make coffee without using a traditional pot. They demonstrated the pourover method of manual drip brewing. It's a precise and lovely way to make coffee that originated in Japan and is a lot like a tea ceremony. It's fun to watch and the coffee is smooth and delicious. It allows for complete customization of your brew and is perfect for all you science experiment lovers out there.

I had heard of this type of coffee before but had never seen it being made or tried it. These two take their coffee seriously. I was in for a treat! Here's the short version:

They started with a Bee House Dripper - a pot that is user friendly and only about $20. You place a paper filter inside and then prime the pot by pouring water over the empty filter. This causes the paper to stick to the sides

This also preheats the pot and container you'll brew the coffee into.

After this step, you fill the pot with 30 grams of coffee, flatten the grounds and then pour water that's 205 degrees over top (slightly less than boiling.) You pour the water into the grounds just a little bit at first and it will release the carbon dioxide and foam up. This is called preinfusing.

This steps allows you to have an even pour so don't skip it!

Then you pour the water into the grounds, starting in the center and moving around in one direction only. This is where the skill comes in.

It reminds me of folding batter, you are mixing but gently. You start and end in the center.

They are very precise at the Katz Club Diner and weigh the yield - 300 grams - but if you want to skip the weighing it results in just over a cup of coffee.

We tried two single origin beans - a lighter and fruitier Panama and a deeper and richer Nicaraguan. Both delicious but very different.


Both the pourover and regular coffee are from Rising Star Coffee. It's another example of Chef Doug's commitment to using local and the best quality ingredients at all of his restaurants. You can buy their coffee beans at the diner too. 

Will I try this at home? Definitely! But not for my first cuppa joe of the day. For me, it's better suited to an after dinner or weekend brew because of the additional time and precision needed. I like the ritual of it but when you need a ton of coffee fast, an automatic drip or french press is the better choice.

The Katz Club Diner will be offering workshops so you can learn about the pourover method and taste the difference for yourself. The first one is scheduled for November 16th at 2pm. Until then, stop in and order a cup. The pourover coffee is $3 a cup and totally worth every penny. It's the smoothest cup of coffee ever but full of flavor. Be sure to watch them brewing it for you.

We ended the night with a tour of the bar car.

oooh la la! love the sexy corner conversation area
Get there after 8pm and you'll experience craft cocktails in a dining car like no other. This space can be rented for private dining events too.

Did you know you can grab a cup of coffee and some delicious bakery to go? They also have a killer on-the-go breakfast deal: a gourmet egg mcmuffin and a cup of Rising Star regular coffee for only $5.


Super breakfast deal, Burgers and Bourbon tasting event TONIGHT and coffee to go are just some of the cool things going on at the Katz Club Dinner
Rising Star Coffee, homemade pop tart
perfect cappuccinos, homemade goodies galore and Rising Star beans to go
yes, that's a homemade pop tart!

Thank you to Katz Club Diner for inviting us to a fun, informative and delicious event!
Happy bloggers: Meaghan, me and Amanda





Disclosure: In addition to inviting us to the coffee tasting, we each received a goodie bag of baked treats, coffee beans and a gift card. We were also offered a sample of food from the regular menu. As always, the opinions expressed are my own.

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