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💋 

 

 

Providing "Concierge Service" For Your Coffee, Confections & Gift Needs

Concierge...You know who they are. You see them at your hotel when traveling. A wonderful customer service oriented professional looking to help you with what ever you desire. Searching for wonderful local places to eat?...your concierge will direct you to the best local haunts to enjoy wonderful dishes. How about unique stores???...he/she will provide you a list of fabulous boutiques or great finds that you won't see any where else. Ideas for the kids...you name it they are there to provide you that extra care and wonderful experience while staying in the area.

That is my desire for you here in the Phoenix Metro Area. My goal is to provide you fresh roasted coffee, delicious sweets & treats and other unique gifts made fresh and delivered to your home or office door. 

If you're in a bind and need a gift for a friend or coworker, you can order online and we can deliver to their door saving you some time and effort. How special it is to order a coffee subscription for a couple of months that is delivered fresh. Or create a small gift container of goodies wrapped and delivered with a note from you. I would love to assist you and customize gifts for you too. 

Here's a quick tutorial on ordering online and receiving local delivery in the Phoenix Metro area. I've taken some screenshots of my website as a walk through. I apologize if the pictures are not as crisp. I tried to make them clearer but it was not working. Hopefully you get the gist.

All you need to do is head to our website Johnny Lolita's

Hover your cursor over the "Shop Online" and click that page. 

Scroll down to the categories and click on the category you wish to shop. 

Click on a category you'd like to view  

Click on a category you'd like to view  

Screenshot of Coffee page and Sweets page  

Screenshot of Coffee page and Sweets page  

Click on item(s) you wish to purchase and click on the shopping cart and proceed to checkout. 

This looks yummy... 

This looks yummy... 

Submit and head to shipping/payment info page  

Submit and head to shipping/payment info page  

At the checkout screen you will fill out your email address so we can notify you that we received your order and let you know when your delivery is being made. 

Enter email address to receive updates on your order

Enter email address to receive updates on your order

On the shipping section, fill in the address and person that the item(s) are going If it's for you or if you are sending to someone else. Be sure you enter the address that it is going to be delivered locally in the Phoenix Metro Area. 

Enter the address I will be delivering the item(s). Be sure you click on the "LOCAL DELIVERY" shipping option.  

Enter the address I will be delivering the item(s). Be sure you click on the "LOCAL DELIVERY" shipping option.  

On the Section 3 is the section where you can leave us a specific note. If you are sending as a gift, include a message or if you are sending to your office, let me know. 

Here you can write a personal message if it's a gift or provide me any additional details to your delivery such as delivering to office etc.  

Here you can write a personal message if it's a gift or provide me any additional details to your delivery such as delivering to office etc.  

You will then continue to the payment section and enter your credit card info. 

Fresh roasted coffee

Fresh roasted coffee

That's it! You will receive an email confirming your purchase and I will be following up with you when the order is completed and ready for delivery.

When delivering in the Phoenix metro area, I will contact you or the person that is receiving the item(s) that I will be in the area for delivery to ensure I can deliver and/or drop off at a specific location etc. 

Homemade caramels

Homemade caramels

You (or someone you gifted) will receive fresh roasted coffee, fresh homemade sweets and gifts right to their door!  

I love roasting coffee....I love developing great tasting coffee for you to enjoy at home with friends & family...or just on your own. I love providing a quality product and quality service. 

We also offer coffee & sweets for showers, corporate events, weddings, birthdays or any other special occasion you are having. We can provide gifts/favors for a few or many, just contact me, Lolita, with any questions you may have. 

I'm waiting for your order  

I'm waiting for your order  

I look forward to providing you my "concierge service" and deliver you great tasting coffee, sweet delectables and any other items offered on our site. 

Lolita💋

 

A Big Shout Out & Thank You To My Amiga Pamela

We are in the heat of summer. Especially in Arizona where we feel we live "Two zip codes past hell!" So many small business owners and entrepreneurs working hard perfecting their craft, meeting potential customers and building relationships. Working for yourself can be very hard....and yet I wouldn't change it for the world.

In steps Pamela Enriquez....she brightened my day and actually made me cried at her thoughtfulness towards me when I know she herself has her own load of day-to-day challenges. 

I was introduced to Pamela though another great friend and talented artist Georgina Diaz when I first started my obsession with coffee in a small building off highway 28 in La Union, NM. That is where Johnny L💋LITA's first started.  

Some of Georgina's work  

Some of Georgina's work  

Johnny and I started our Artisan's Thieves Market where I met the most wonderful and talented artists from Texas and New Mexico. Pamela and her mom participated in several of our markets and the moment I met her I was instantly a fan of her work and a fan of her! 

You must check out her Facebook page  (Pamela Enriquez-Courts (Artist)). I am a fan of "Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) and all things "skeletal". Pamela creates such beautiful work but what impresses me the most is her attention to detail especially in fabric. Not only will a "Calaca" (a dressed skeleton for those who do not speak Spanish) have a beautiful dress...the actual fabric she paints will have a print on the fabric or her lace...Oh her lace is so detailed and delicate. To paint like that....unbelievable. 

My Cafecito de Lolita!  

My Cafecito de Lolita!  

I was chatting via Facebook messenger to Pamela and I mentioned a possible dream of doing coffee and baked goods in a vintage trailer and wanted to know if she had anything with a coffee theme or baked goods. She said she would look into it and would get back to me as she was working on numerous orders and getting ready for a large show in Santa Fe. 

The other day in the mail I had a package from Pamela. I immediately wrote to her and asked her what do I owe? Pamela said "she is a gift". She continued that I had a good heart and I always have the sweetest and most nspirational things to say so she wanted to gift her to me. I was so taken aback. I opened the package and found the most beautiful painting. I turned it over and saw what she named her and I cried. "Cafecita de Lolita y Pan Dulce" which translates to Lolita's coffee and sweet breads.  

Such a beautiful gift that I will cherish. I told Pamela when I get my trailer and start my coffee and treats...she will proudly be displayed in my trailer. I am overwhelmed with such love from my Amiga in New Mexico. 

Future trailer ??? 

Future trailer ??? 

If you want to see more of Pamela's work, go to her Facebook page. You can find her beautiful work...original and prints plus find out where she will be traveling to attend some of the best art shows in the region.  

To my beautiful Amiga Pamela...besos y abrazos.  I can't wait to get that trailer. 

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💋 

Stressed??? Well Stressed Spelled Backwards Is DESSERTS!

I love a little sweet with my coffee...is that so bad? (wink wink smiley face)

A "sea..(sea salt) of caramels  

A "sea..(sea salt) of caramels  

I've always had a sweet tooth and I've always loved to bake and make candy. While John and I have been eating a lot healthier and watching the calorie intake, we've been very successful in losing weight. I will say that I don't deprive myself of something a little sweet every now and then. For me, I have been able to lose weight and still enjoy some tasty treats along the way. Everything in moderation, right?  

One of my favorite sweets to make is salted caramels. It is quite a process...not that it's a difficult recipe...you just need time and patience. And...during the heat of the summer in Arizona, I am able to ship out unlike our chocolate confections,  

Example of our favors with salted caramels  

Example of our favors with salted caramels  

I've been doing more and more favors for weddings, showers and other corporate events utilizing our coffee beans and now we are creating amazing favors/gifts with our confections. It's a special way to offer a wonderful handmade memorable gift to give to your wedding guests, party goers, corporate employees or customers. 

If you're feeling a "sweet tooth" coming on and need something delivered locally or shipped.....or have a special event you would like to discuss....I'm happy to make something special for you. 

Lolita💋 

Tooting My Own Horn

image.jpg

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💋 

From Fig Tree....to Fig Jam

My tree in our backyard.  

My tree in our backyard.  

We Relocated back to Arizona in October, 2015. Most of our living has been desert landscape or a very small "postage stamp" lot. We found a beautiful home in a historic district and I've never had so much grass, bushes and greenery in my life! 

Our neighbor has several fruit bearing trees. Oranges, grapefruit and persimmons to name a few. Well....I have a fig tree. I was pretty excited about it as I L❤️VE figs! I remember growing up in my wonderful neighborhood on Buckingham Drive in El Paso, the Elias family had a fig tree and I thought how cool is that. It was so different to have a fig tree I thought and they were so tasty too. I couldn't wait until they were ripe so we could enjoy.

Kadota figs

Kadota figs

Flashback to the present...I have a fig tree and wanted to find out what kind it was. Well until it starts producing the fruit, I really wasn't sure. I researched a lot on the web and talked to a couple of local nurseries. I am fortunate because we have bi-weekly irrigation so it is getting plenty of water. I've been watching it and soon it started producing all that wonderful fruit. So I (along with every wild bird in the neighborhood) watched carefully and when they were ready I started harvesting and yes...I shared with the wild birds too. There are so many...and it's still producing more fruit. 

I finally found out I have a Kadota Fig Tree. Which, from what I read, is the figs they use in Fig Newtons. They stay a greenish/yellowish color unlike the Mission or Brown Turkey Figs that turn a deep purple or brown. So what do you do with figs??? Why make fig jam!!!

Paired with Costa Rican coffee.😁 

Paired with Costa Rican coffee.😁 

I made up my first batch...wasn't hard, just takes time to simmer and thicken. The end result....Johnny says "De-lish! I'm pretty happy with it myself. In case you're interested...here's the recipe. And you know what? It's great on a piece of toast and a cup of Johnny Lolita's Coffee (shameless plug). I paired it with our Costa Rican....very nice. However, this would be wonderful in making up a Charcuterie Board using some goat cheese or Manchego....oh and a glass of wine. (Wink wink, smiley face) 

Here's the recipe;  

  • 2 lbs of figs stemmed and quartered. (I used the Kadota figs which are probably not as sweet as the Mission or Brown Turkey Figs) 
  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • ½ cup honey (or sub with the same amount of sugar)
  • Juice of 1½ lemons
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Place the figs, sugar, honey, & lemon juice in a large sauce pan and heat over medium-high heat, stirring to combine as the sugar melts. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and cook until thickened, about 50-60 minutes. Be sure to stir the pan often to prevent sticking and/or burning, especially as the mixture thickens. Remove from heat, stir in the vanilla, and cool completely.
  2. Store the jam in jars or other air tight containers in the refrigerator. You can also can them, just follow the instructions for canning. 
Fig delish!  

Fig delish!  

Because the figs thicken on their own, you don't need to add pectin therefore no need to can. However, if you are gifting to someone, putting them in a mason jar and adding a cute Kraft style sticker makes a great special gift! 

Enjoy!

Lolita💋

 

Johnny's Serving Boards Are Back!

Dying boards with coffee. 

Dying boards with coffee. 

Johnny & I are always looking to repurpose SOMETHING! I love getting old broken down furniture and making it new. Or taking an item that was meant for one thing and turning it into something fun and cool.

We are looking to grow our little business in new directions. There is so much we enjoy to create and we want to share with you. We have some big goals in store and need your help. By purchasing some of these cool items (this is the start of one such item).....you will help us get closer to our goal. I will share our new ideas very soon. (Wink wink smiley face) 

Serving board with copper bear and instructions  

Serving board with copper bear and instructions  

Now...we are bringing back our Serving Boards. These boards are made from pine, sanded to a smooth finish. They are then dyed with coffee grounds and oiled with food grade oil. These boards are more of a rustic way to display your olives, cheese and meats...or any other food items with style. 

They are easy to care for... Hand wash & dry, do not use in dishwasher. Wood will darken with use. You may oil from time to time using only food grade (butcher block) mineral oils.  

They make great gifts wrapped and the price is $17.00. Add some coffee samples...I'll warp it and makes a beautiful gift for a wedding, bridal shower or any other occasion. . With coffee samples and wrapped, the price is $28.00. 

We are currently working on them and if you are interested in one and wish to pre-order, write in the comments below. You do not pay ahead...this is to hold one for you since we do tend to sell these quickly. When completed, I will let you know and send an invoice. We can deliver locally in the Phoenix metro area or ship anywhere in the US. (Additional postage and delivery fees apply)

Add some coffee and we will wrap it up! Great gift  

Add some coffee and we will wrap it up! Great gift  

We will be putting together other unique items for sale as well to help us achieve our next goal. Thank you so much in advance and will be following up with another post about our new additional venture. 

Lolita💋