Standing Stone Brewing Company

local business

By in Community 0

Spotlight on Noble Coffee Roasting: Part 2 of 2

We love our local business partners in Ashland, Oregon. Noble Coffee Roasting is an award-winning craft coffee producer located just a few blocks away, and we proudly brew their coffee and espresso at Standing Stone. Last week we posted Part One of our interview with owner, Jared Rennie, all about responsible sourcing how the business started. Now, we continue with more about Noble Coffee Roasting, including how to brew and use great coffee at home.

What are some of the ways Noble Coffee has worked to benefit coffee producers and communities?

Describing how Noble Coffee has benefited our producer-partners would take many words to fully explain. To keep it simple, we develop relationships with producers, and then we fully support them. Here are some examples…

  • We have paid for the organic certification for two of our producer-partners.
  • We have operated fundraisers that have provided funds, computers, printers, and school supplies to producing communities.
  • We name our coffees after the producers and farms themselves, so as to give them credit for growing the fruit that they do.
  • We pay based on cupping scores. This means that a coffee that scores 88 out to 100 earns more money than a coffee scoring 86 points. This creates an incentive for producers to constantly be improving.
  • We provide feedback based on quality that allows producers to improve their crops which, in turn, helps them to demand higher prices for their product.

What’s the best way to store and prepare coffee at home?

  • Buy high-quality, certified organic coffee.
  • Buy coffee that offers a roast date.
  • Buy coffee that is freshly-roasted and brew it within two weeks from the roast date.
  • Grind your beans with a high-quality burr grinder (like Baratza) just before brewing.
  • Use filtered water (Brita is great).
  • Make sure to use the appropriate temperature, right around 200 degrees.
  • Use the appropriate quantity of coffee (around 2 grams of coffee per 1 ounce of water).
  • Know more about the chemistry of brewing coffee… Coffee is the most complex food that we consume in terms of flavonoids, and therefore antioxidants. If you’re interested in more hands on learning, please write us at for information on brewing classes.

What are some ways to use coffee in food recipes, too?

Coffee can be used for all kinds of great stuff! Finely ground coffee is great for a rub on meats, is a great addition to chocolate frosting, and mole sauces. Cold-brewed concentrates are amazing in cocktails, and these concentrates can also be diluted over ice for a great warm-weather treat.

Thanks again, Jared! You can find Noble Coffee on Fourth Street in Ashland, and also at their walk-up window downtown on the plaza (open April-October). Or, come in to Standing Stone for a handful of Noble-inspired drinks and treats. We brew Noble coffee and espresso, as well as our specialty Noble Stout – our Oatmeal Stout infused with Mokha Java blend cold-press coffee. Or, to satisfy your sweet tooth, try our Stir Crazy Cake, made with dark chocolate and Noble coffee. Whatever your choice, enjoy the opportunity to savor award-winning delights brewed up locally in Ashland.

All photos courtesy of Noble Coffee Roasting

By in Community 0

Spotlight on Noble Coffee Roasting: Part 1 of 2

The Rogue Valley is fortunate to be home to several world-class businesses that focus on creating high-quality products. One such business is Noble Coffee Roasting in Ashland, OR. At Standing Stone Brewing Co. we proudly serve their award-winning coffee and espresso, and even use their cold-press Mokha Java blend in our Noble Stout. We asked owner Jared Rennie to share a bit about his passion for roasting and brewing quality and organic coffee, and he offered us so much wonderful information we’re featuring two posts this week on Noble Coffee. Here’s what’s brewing on Fourth Street in Ashland:

What inspired you to open a coffee roasting company and how did you learn to perfect your sourcing, roasting and brewing?

After roasting and preparing coffee while working my way through high school and college in the Rogue Valley, I graduated from SOU and became a teacher. This was great and I loved teaching, but I soon began to miss serving coffee. I started to collect some great coffee paraphernalia for home-use and this collection grew large fast. As I got further and further into coffee, I realized that coffee could and should be considered a craft food, as was happening with beer, wine, chocolate, and cheese. As I learned more about coffee over the next couple of years and honed my roasting and brewing skills, I saw how much folks in Ashland, and Southern Oregon in general, appreciate high-quality products that are responsibly-produced. By the time early 2007 came around, my coffee hobby and desire to show people what great coffee can taste like had grown out of control and Noble Coffee Roasting was born.

What’s your approach to coffee sourcing?

Our approach to sourcing our coffee is simple – we aim to work with the producers who share our values. First, we are interested in the world’s best-tasting coffees. Often times through awards programs like the Cup of Excellence we find coffee producers who are uncompromisingly dedicated to quality. When it comes to buying based on quality, we are among just a few companies worldwide that buy the level of coffee that we by. What sets us apart from every other coffee company out there is that every coffee we’ve ever purchased is certified organic. So, we have to search pretty hard to find producers that create the level of quality that we search for and do so without the use of synthetic chemicals. This is a big deal as the high quantity of fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides used to grow coffee conventionally make it the most chemically-laden crop in the world that we consume. Choosing to source high-quality organic coffees truly helps to make the world a better place.

What are some of the highlights of your work?

We have been awarded a Good Food Award for both years that the program has existed – we are one of only three companies nationally that can say the same. Most importantly, we love serving our customers the best coffees in the world daily – that represents the greatest highlight imaginable.

Thanks Jared! Coming up next, tips on brewing a great cup of coffee and ideas for using coffee in recipes at home…

All photos courtesy of Noble Coffee Roasting

By in Sustainability 0

Seven Sweet Rewards of Buying Local

We’re loco for local food, and can’t get enough of the fresh produce that makes its way to the Ashland Saturday Growers Market on our block.

Of course, local finds go well beyond food to cover all the goods and services we need. That’s great news we can all use! Even better, choosing to get these from independent businesses in our area has lots of benefits for ourselves, our communities, our regional economy and the planet. Though at times it may seem more expensive, every purchase returns much more than the amount we pay.

We thought we’d share some benefits we’ve learned about and experienced in our own efforts to increase our local purchasing to spread the positive news and a little inspiration.

  •  Local is fresh and tasty!   You’ll enjoy peak flavor and more nutritious food when you get food direct from the farmer, rancher, baker and cheese-maker. Food that has had to travel hundreds or even thousands of miles is tired – and you can taste it.
  • Local empowers consumers. We can learn more about what’s behind what we buy when we can talk to the folks who make it and work directly with producers. When we shop at the farmers market, we can ask about farming practices and find sustainable, chemical-free produce that’s more healthful for us and the environment.
  • We protect and create jobs in our communities. Local businesses need employees—sustaining employment right here at home.  We’re proud to have over 60 employees and support lots of hardworking local farmers, food artisans, service providers and more. It’s like a big family!
  • Locally-spent dollars multiply in our economy as they re-circulate. Number-crunchers say that shopping at a local business yields three times more investment in local communities than shopping at a non-local one. The longer a dollar stays in our community, the more this benefit grows. The more dollars that stay local, the bigger this benefit gets.
  • Local businesses support our communities. Check out this cool fact from our friends at THRIVE: “A study of charitable giving in Oregon showed that when in-kind contributions were included, small firms gave an average of $789 per employee, medium sized firms $172, and large firms $334. (NFIB Small Business Policy Guide)”
  • We build relationships. Our local vendors are responsive to our needs and have become important partners in shaping our business success.
  • We save resources and cut emissions. Local purchasing means shorter transportation distances, using less gas and making fewer emissions.

Wow! That’s a lot of goodness—and that’s just a piece of the pie. For more information and inspiration, pay a visit to THRIVE online, and check out their local benefits list. Then, get out and support your favorite local producers, merchants and service providers.

(photos: M. Schweisguth)