Happy Father's Day

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My very first memories of our mornings in the O'Hara household was my father getting up and quietly heading to the kitchen. His first mission....coffee. 

As a child, I remember the sound of the spoon scooping up spoonfuls of coffee into the electric perk. Within minutes, you heard the beginnings of our Corning Ware Coffee Maker heat, sputter and spurt as it "percolated" (I know it's not a word) our coffee. The smell of coffee begins to head through the house and you know it's time to get up. 

My first experience drinking coffee was at a young age enjoying a cup with my Dad. He's sitting in the dinette area reading the paper enjoying a cigarette and sipping his coffee. Me...I'm waiting for an opportunity to speak to find out what adventures he is planning today and how I can tag along. I was lucky....he always enjoyed me tagging along  

Today, (40 some odd years later) I wake early and begin the rituals of our day. I smell the coffee brewing and the fond memories of my dad come quickly in my head..."So what adventures will I go on today, Dad?" "I know you're with me in spirit." 

Happy Father's Day❤️ 

Lolita💋 

 

A New Year, A New Review

It's me! 

It's me! 

As I'm sitting here sipping my coffee (Lolita's Blend...shameless plug) I've been reviewing last year. Wow...did 2016 happen already? Where does the time go? My Mom always said that I needed to cherish each moment and don't wish your life away because it will fly by in a flash. 

It's that time of year where everyone is looking for a fresh start. Lose weight, more exercise, de-clutter & organize and start anew. I try my best to plan both personally & professionally....goals I wish to accomplish each year. Most years...I wasn't successful. I looked at the goals and saw many failures. However, I found that I never took the time to review the year before, see some of the goals I did complete and be thankful for what I did accomplish. As well as recounting all the wonderful things that happened during that time. Sometimes I met part of my goal but didn't look at it that way...I saw failure. Not anymore....

A great resolution!  

A great resolution!  

2016 was about a new beginning. We moved back to Arizona to be closer to family, revamped Johnny Lolita's and Johnny has been focusing on his consultancy-Career Coaching. Although we left our recruitment world, it never left John...it followed him everywhere. So in addition of assisting me on the coffee/confections side...he's continuing his career coaching business. (Click here). In which I can assist him from time to time.  

Each year, there has been one thing that many who preach the power of goal setting, building your business, etc is to be a little more vulnerable and tell the world exactly what you're doing. I never wanted to for fear it was too personal...won't help me reach my goal,...why discuss it? In reading further, many explain that if no one knows what you're wanting to accomplish, how are you going to get there? This year, I'm stepping out of my comfort zone and opening up. 

A quick review of 2016 and things we are thankful for:

  • Back in AZ and reconnecting with friends & family.
  • Started Johnny Lolita's and began building locally.
  • Successfully started to sell roasted coffee locally (Phoenix metro) via online sales, word-of-mouth, social media & events.
  • Maintained our current customers in TX, NM, PA, NY, GA, DC, TN, WA, FL, CO & CA.
  • Took my Food Handlers course, & received certification for cottage kitchen and began selling my confections and baked goods locally. Excited that it's been successful and building quickly.
  • Started custom gift containers and have sold to corporate accounts, realtors and individuals.
  • Did a couple of large events ( wedding & corporate) and sold "favors" & "thank you" gifts to attendees. 

When I take the time to review...I feel I am making progress. I appreciate everyone who has contacted me and given me the opportunity to roast fresh coffee and/or bake items for themselves, for gifts or some sort of event. Without you all OR "y'all...Johnny Lolita's would not be here. 

I truly L❤️VE what I am doing now. I love creating things that will put a smile on someone's face, I love talking to be people about "The Art of Coffee & Entertaining at home." The ability to create fun & creative ways to deliver gifts....I could blather on. 

Now here comes the hard part for me. Opening up and letting you in on my dreams I have for Johnny Lolita's. Okay....here it goes.

Goals for Johnny Lolita's: 

  • Have a small building (lease) with a commercial catering kitchen so I can build upon my confections/baking side of business
  • Start "Coffee parties" at customers' homes to educate on coffee, brewing & other fun accessories for the home.
  • Providing blogs on entertaining at home with coffee, and other fun ideas for the home.
  • Partcipate in at least 16 "boutique/events" to sell our products. 
  • Continue marketing our online sales of fresh roasted coffee shipped to your door. 
  • Market our local delivery of fresh roasted coffee to your home or office. 
  • Obtain a vintage trailer or some sort of mobile vehicle to revamp and utilize at events as well as weddings, birthdays or corporate events selling our fresh roasted coffee and sweets. 
  • Create new products (coffee accessories or other home products) to sell online. 
This would be cool.  

This would be cool.  

The list above are my top goals I wish to accomplish for Johnny Lolita's in 2017. There are some lofty goals however I am willing to do the hard work it takes to see this become a reality. Of course I need your help...in your continued support of our small business. Letting us know if there is anything we can do for you. 

Johnny and I wish to thank all of you who have purchased our products and have supported our business. We wish to grow so please share our story and our business with others. We have our business on all social media platforms so please feel free to share. Whether you're on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Pinterest...the one that is your "social media of choice" please invite others to be a part of our community. We thank you in advance and wish everyone an awesome 2017.

Lolita💋 

 

 

Tis The Season For Gift Giving!

Wow! Wasn't it just Halloween? I can't believe that the holidays are here. We've been busy roasting and baking for several holiday events plus doing some fun catering and corporate gift giving for clients. 

Coffee Gift Subscription

Coffee Gift Subscription

If you're in a quandary for gifts, you can always call me and see if there is something we can create and customize for you. In the meantime...here are some gift ideas to check out. 

A Gift of Coffee:  Like Cousin Eddie says in National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation,  "It's the gift that keeps on giving all year long." You can set up for any amount. You can order 1 bag or more to be locally delivered by hand or shipped on a monthly basis. Fresh roasted coffe delivered to your door and be charged on a math.y basis. You can choose how many months you wish to have coffee delivered...12 months, 6 months, 3 months or 1 month... Whatever you like. Just contact me to set up your gift subscription. 

Hot chocolate on a stick

Hot chocolate on a stick

Hot Chocolate On A Stick:  who doesn't love a rich cup of hot chocolate on a cold winter night. All you do is add your favorite hot milk, 2%, almond or soy, add your chocolate on a stick and stir.  Looking for a dark, rich Mocha Coffee...add one of these to your coffee. A rich dessert in your cup. Available in a 2,4 or 6 pack. We will wrap in festive ribbon. 

Salted Caramels:  Made fresh and with all natural ingredients. A sweet caramel chew with a hint of sea salt.  

Salted Caramels, Coffee Caramel Sauce

Salted Caramels, Coffee Caramel Sauce

Half-N-Half:  How about a little coffee and hot chocolate? Great gift for co-workers, friends and family.  

Lolita's Coffee Caramel Sauce:  What a wonderful treat, dip your favorite fruit or pretzels, pour over ice cream or just grab a spoon. infused with our coffee gives you a hint of coffee to the caramel flavor. 

Merry Holy*Latte: A fun gift for anyone who loves a latte. A sample of fresh coffee, syrup,whisk and directions on how to make a latte at home. Wrapped in a cute burlap sack. We have choices of flavors too.

Lolita's Chocolate Clusters:  A popular sweet that goes great with coffee. Fresh roasted coffee beans and pecans dipped in a rich dark chocolate with a hint of sea salt to finish it off.  

Chocolate Clusters, Holly*Latte Bag and Half-N-Half

Chocolate Clusters, Holly*Latte Bag and Half-N-Half

Mug Huggers:  A fun way to enjoy a mini gingerbread cookie with your coffee. Just hang it in the rim of your coffee cup. Sweet and spicy gingerbread with a lemon icing. Simple and delicious. Makes a great gift to set at the place settings for guests arriving for dinner, teachers or your awesome clients. We can make as many as you need just give us a call for larger orders. 

If you're looking to put something together in a container, contact me and let's create something special for you.  Be sure to check out our website for additional items we have. 

Mug Huggers

Mug Huggers

When it comes to shipping, we are quickly approaching the cut-off date. With Christmas being on a Sunday you need to order now so we can fulfill by next week and ship out.  

Local deliveries have a little more time...give us a call and if you need something special for an event let me know how we can help.  

Wishing all of you a Merry, Happy and Joyous Holiday Season.  

Lolita 🎄 

 

Pumpkin Spiced Latte...Crock Pot Style

The holidays are here!!! Cooler temps in the morning (at least that is what we have in Arizona). Thanksgiving is here and spending time with family & friends at home is upon us. 

So many styles of crock pots available.  

So many styles of crock pots available.  

A time to be thankful. Thankful for your health, thankful for being with loved ones and thankful for all the blessing we have received this year.  

My whole purpose about what I do with my coffee, sweets and gifts is enjoying and entertaining at home. And now...this is the perfect time of year with family and friends getting together for the holidays. 

So what better time to share a great and easy recipe for your guests when they arrive....to walk in to a wonderful smell of spices wafting through the air. What's even better, you can make it ahead since you will slow cook in a crock pot. A Pumkin Spiced Latte. Here's the ingredients and directions on making this great tasting hot cup of spiced love (wink wink smiley face). 

Pumpkin Spiced Latte-Crock Pot Style

Ingredients  

  • 6 cups of whole milk (you can use 2%, soy or almond milk)
  • 6 cups of strongly brewed coffee (Johnny Lolita's Brazil Dark or Lolita's Blend would be awesome) 
  • 1/2 cup of Pumkin purée  
  • 1/4-1/2 cup of sugar ( depending on how sweet you want it)  
  • 2 teaspoons of cinnamon
  • 3 cinnamon sticks  

Directions 

  • Combine coffee and milk in your crockpot.
  • in a separate bowl, whisk/whip together the pumpkin, sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon and pour into crockpot. 
  • Mix all ingredients well.
  • Add the cinnamon sticks. 
  • Cover the crockpot and cook on high for 2 hours. If it seems like it's been boiling for a long time reduce the heat. 
  • Ready to serve and enjoy. 

This recipe will serve 15+ people. For the adults you can offer your favorite liquor to their spiced latte. 

Pumpkin Spiced Latte ready to enjoy.  

Pumpkin Spiced Latte ready to enjoy.  

If you try this recipe, let me know how you served it and if you added additional "spirits". I would not suggest you save leftovers and re-heat. It will not keep and the coffee with the milk and spices will NOT taste good reheated.  

I know this recipe is NOT for the coffee purist. I know you wish to smack my hand to even offer up this recipe. My thought is that you should enjoy your coffee, however you like to. If it's with cream, just sugar, honey etc. enjoy it your way. A wonderful way to serve lots of people.

So set up a small bar off to the side so people can serve themselves. Add regular coffee & decaf via coffee pot or create a small pou over station. Now....you can concentrate on getting your side dishes and turkey ready for the group.

I roast coffee twice a week and deliver and/or ship the following day. I would L❤️VE to roast your next order. AND....make a delicious sweet/treat and deliver locally to your home or office.

Lolita💋 

 

Johnny's Coffee & Molasses Pork Chops

Cold brew & Molasses

Cold brew & Molasses

I came home the other day and Johnny is clanking and banging in the kitchen. I ask him what in the world is he doing. He whips around holding some of his cold brew and a jar of molasses. I ask him..."What are you planning to make?" His response...."Prepare to be amazed!"  

Well, I was beyond amazed and can't wait to enjoy it again. The flavor was amazing! We enjoyed it with a side of roasted cabbage drizzled lightly in olive oil, salt, pepper and a little garlic.  

I asked Johnny if he would mind sharing this and he said he would be happy to share. It's another great way to enjoy coffee.  

Here's the recipe...I would love to hear from you if you try it. 

 

 

Ingredients: 

Chops a-grillin' 

Chops a-grillin' 

  • 1 cup of cold brew or strong coffee
  • 6 ounces molasses by weight, (about 1/2 cup) 
  • 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 2 cloves of garlic finely minced
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger  
  • 6-8 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 4 (6oz-8oz) bone-in pork chops (1 inch thick)  

Directions

Combine the coffee, molasses, vinegar, mustard, garlic, salt & pepper, ginger, thyme and pork chops in a 1 gallon zip-lock bag; seal and shake to combine. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.  

Preheat a grill to medium-high heat. Remove the pork from the bag. Pour the marinade into a saucepan; boil gently over medium-high heat, stirring, until reduced to 1/2 cup, 12-15 minutes. Remove the thyme stems.  

Grill the pork chops for 3-4 minutes per side, or until they reach an internal temperature of 145. Let rest for 5 minutes; serve with glaze. 

Served with roasted cabbage.  

Served with roasted cabbage.  

Please share with us your version and post some pics too. Be sure to post on Facebook or Instagram.  

Johnny & Lolita💋 

 

Another Cool And Refreshing Coffee Drink...Coffee Tonics

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I am continuing my series of wonderfully refreshing cool (as in cold) coffee drinks for the hot days of summer. This one is pretty simple and has been around for quite sometime outside of the US but in recent years made its way here. 

Coffee Tonics or sometimes called Black Tonics! Hmm a sophisticated version of the simple iced coffee? Could be...I just really like the "fizz" or the bubbles. (wink wink smiley face)

Poring a long shot  

Poring a long shot  

The key (for me) is to get the right tonic water and coffee. I prefer a tonic water with no "lemony" or fruit flavor added. Just a plain naturally light tonic water. However, you can experiment by trying different kinds and seeing if you find a great combination for your coffee. 

Next would be your coffee or your espresso that you are going to mix. I find that the Central American beans such as Brazil, Costa Rican and Guatemala pairs wonderfully with the tonic water. You're seeking coffee without the bitterness. 

Now I did say espresso...a long espresso shot if you will. So if you own an espresso machine at home...great! Make a long espresso shot. If not, try using a Moka Pot. Yes, I have an espresso machine but I will show you using a Moka Pot. 

Black Tonic is ready.  

Black Tonic is ready.  

By the way, these Moka Pots are awesome. They have been around forever and do make great cups of espresso. 

Grab a glass add some ice and add about 6 ounces of tonic water. Next add 2 ounces of espresso. Last...enjoy. Simple, natural sweetness from the espresso beans equals delicious and the bubbles make it quite refreshing. 

If you don't have any kind of espresso making machine or Moka Pot...try using your cold brew concentrate. When I've tried with our cold brew concentrate I've added about 3 ounces. It works just as well. 

Cheers! 

Lolita 💋

 

Coconut Cold Brew Iced Coffee

Coconut water available at most grocery or health food stores  

Coconut water available at most grocery or health food stores  

My L❤️VE affair with coffee continues....I am always seeking great recipes and thinking, "hmmm, this would taste great together with coffee!" I am continuing my series of great tasting iced coffee drinks to enjoy all summer long.  

Not sure if you've tried coconut water, I started drinking it about a year ago and really enjoy the taste. I read that it is a very healthy alternative drink (be sure to pick up coconut water without added sugar or juices). There are some great benefits to drinking coconut water such as aiding in digestion, rich in nutrients, boosts hydration AND I've heard that it can help should you wake with a hangover....hmm.(wink wink smiley face)  

I digress....anyway, I really like the taste and wanted to see if I could incorporate it with my cold brew coffee. The answer is yes you can! Obviously I am not the only one, there are others who cold brew with coconut water instead of plain water and there are other coconut/coffee drinks so at least I know I was on the right track. I don't wish to "cold brew" my coffee with coconut water because I do like doing other thinks with my cold brew such as drinking it straight, heating it or creating another drink. This way I start with coffee and water and should I want to make a coconut based drink, I can add to it.

1/2 Cold Brew and 1/2 Coconut Water

1/2 Cold Brew and 1/2 Coconut Water

A very simple recipe and there's no right or wrong way in regards to amounts. Since I do make a cold brew concentrate I don't need as much of the cold brew coffee. However, you might like it a little weaker than I do so adjust to your taste. 

Adding Coconut water to cold brew coffee  

Adding Coconut water to cold brew coffee  

Should you need the recipe to make Cold Brew Coffee, be sure to click here

Heres what you'll need; 

  • Cold Brew Coffee (if you don't have cold brew, make some coffee and cool it down) 
  • Coconut water
  • Ice

Take your glass of choice and fill with ice. Pour about 1/4 to 1/2 of cold brew. I like a strong tasting coffee so I add 1/2. Johnny decided to use a straight Ethiopian coffee verses his Johnny's Cold Brew Blend. The straight Ethiopian is a complete fruit and berry taste which makes great iced coffee. The Johnny's Cold Brew Blend offers a cocoa, nutty and fruit taste. However, use your favorite coffee or what you have in the cupboard. Fill remaining glass with coconut water. Viola! Coconut Cold Brew Iced. 

Optional...add a shot of creme

Optional...add a shot of creme

I don't add sugar to my coffee, however you may like a spoonful of sugar or whatever sweetness you like to add. For a creamy taste, add a shot of creme. It takes it to a sweeter level and the results are delicious. 

Johnny tasting and enjoying 😍 

Johnny tasting and enjoying 😍 

Please comment or send me a note and let me know what you think. I would love to hear from you!

Lolita 💋 

 

Weddings, Showers, Corporate Events And All Parties

Coffee bag sample & salted caramel bag sample

Coffee bag sample & salted caramel bag sample

I wanted to share (shameless plug) some of the fun things we are doing with our time. I L❤️VE roasting coffee and I L❤️VE making sweets and baked goods. Like I say all the time...Coffee goes great with something sweet!

It started back in El Paso assisting someone with a small gift giving event for a non-profit organization and now has grown to a big part of what we do. Which I'm thrilled...because I've always loved creating gifts of sweets and coffee and present them in unique ways depending on the event. 

Since then...we've done several weddings with coffee in small coffee bags or mini burlap sacks. We've done a bridal shower with decaf coffee favors along with the caffeinated option that was a big hit. 

Now, we've added some of our confections such as our handmade salted caramels, hot chocolate on a stick and mini jars of our new salted coffee caramel sauce...YUM!  

Homemade salted caramels

Homemade salted caramels

A fun and memorable gift for your guests for any special event you might have. If you have something special coming up and you are interested in offering some of our coffee and/or tasty sweets, feel free to contact me shawn@johnnylolitas.com. 

Lolita💋 

Milk & Honey Latte Via Cold Brew

Milk & Honey Latte

Milk & Honey Latte

Since we relocated to the Phoenix AZ area, we are enjoying...scratch that enduring...scratch that one too....tolerating the summer heat! I've decided to do some research, creating and massive taste testing on some cold/iced/frozen coffee infused drinks to share in the coming weeks.

We have a simple one to start with...it's one I drink when I want a little iced treat during the day and love to share with my friends when I have them over. What's great is the milk you choose can be any kind...I like to use soy milk but you can use almond milk, skim, 2%, whatever you want. 

I have the recipe for Cold Brew Coffee available in a previous blog. To get the recipe, click here. Here's the quick and simple recipe;

Ingredients: 

  • 1/4 cup of cold brew concentrate  
  • 1 cup of cold milk (whole, skim, almond, soy etc) 
  • 2 teaspoons of honey

Directions: 

  • Pour your cold brew coffee in a tumbler or glass of choice
  • In a small microwave safe cup of bowl, heat the honey. Shouldn't take long to heat such a small amount. 
  • In a separate cup or small glass, add your cold milk. Start stirring the milk and add the heated honey. By heating the honey it will help prevent it from hardening in the milk. (Honey will dissolve much easier in the cold milk than it will in the cold brew coffee or the coffee and milk)
  • Once dissolved add the milk and honey mixture to the cold brew coffee.  
  • Chill in the fridge if needed or enjoy! 

Having friends over?... Make a head of time in a large container and simply double or quadruple the recipe in a pitcher. Set in the fridge and when your guest arrive...wonderful chilled milk & honey lattes.  

I tend to use coffee ice cubes to enjoy it sooner with added coffee flavor from the ice cubes OR use regular ice cubes should you wish to put together and serve immediately. There really is no wrong way to make it. 

I hope you enjoy. Be sure to comment and let me know your thoughts and how you made yours,  

Lolita 💋 

Tooting My Own Horn

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Ok...yes...I'm tooting my own horn. Why? Well I was so excited to see yet another great review on our coffee. I do L❤️VE roasting coffee. It's my quiet time...my "zen" in the morning if you will. It's a whole ritualistic thing for me. Writing out my orders, weighing the green beans, preparing the roaster and roasting the beans. I spend a lot of time on each batch of coffee I roast. Making sure I take the right amount of time, the right amount of heat and hit the right temperature to make a great tasting cup.

I constantly worry....worry about each roast ensuring I'm managing my roast resulting in a perfect cup for my customers. All my customers...old and new love the taste and have their favorite coffee. It's a constant worry for me that I'm producing a great cup. 

Step in CoffeeKen...click on his name and it will take you to his website.  I met Ken via Twitter a couple of years ago when I first started roasting coffee in New Mexico. CoffeeKen is a "Java junkie, blogger and coffee aficionado". He's been passionate about coffee since he was very young and has taken his passion and knowledge and created a great "all about coffee" website to learn about great coffee shops and coffee roasters as well as brewing techniques and best practices to making your morning cup. If you're a coffee lover and planning a trip, check out his website and see if there are cool coffee stops you can check out on your travels. 

Ok...I digress...Recently moving to Arizona, I wanted to meet CoffeeKen and provide him some of my coffee. I was so nervous....I'm basically putting myself out there with someone who's pretty darn knowledgable about coffee. The one thing I did know about CoffeeKen was he's a very positive person and if he doesn't like your coffee...he just won't write anything about it.  

I kept checking his site to see if anything had come up especially on our Turquoise Trail. I know he's busy and I know he's reviewing other coffees....but that wasn't helping my cause. Lol  

CoffeeKen texted me a brief note telling me he had a chance to try our Coffee and he loved it. WHEW!!! Heavy sigh of relief. Needless to say he wrote a great review on our Turquoise Trail. Along with the Turquoise Trail, I handed him our Buzz Kill Decaf. I wasn't sure if he drank decaf...most serious coffee people enjoy the caffeine jolt.  

Again, I was excited to receive another note from him letting me know he reviewed the Buzz Kill Decaf. I was very very happy and humbled on the report he delivered on our caffeine free java. With a big smile on my face, here's an excerpt from his blog. "I was very much skeptical. Imagine my surprise, that when I finally got around to brewing this coffee up, I was completely taken aback by it’s richness in aroma, flavor, and body! Even the acidity was perfect for me!"

I am not a decaf person either, however, this decaf really makes a great cup of coffee. I don't realize I'm drinking a decaf as you do on most decaffeinated coffee. If you'd like to take the time and read the full review, please click here.  

Thank you CoffeeKen for your review...  I am sitting back with a cup and a BIG smile on my face. 

Lolita💋