Close to Making the First Batch

We set up a couple more tables this week that next week will be home to our melangeur, temperer and granite slab (for tabling). We put the finishing touches on our winnower, did a burn-in on the oven, ordered a poly-top table that we're going to modify for bean cleaning. Tomorrow we'll be in the shop doing some general cleaning in preparation for our inaugural run. It's really amazing to see it all coming together -- we're getting very close to the point where we can fire everything up and make our first batch of test chocolate in our new little shop -- perhaps within the next two weeks.

Next up is building the bean cleaning table, the cooling table (after roasting), and the cooling tunnel. For the cooling tunnel, think "keezer" -- we're going to go with the chest freezer design where you put a shim between the chest and the lid -- we'll have a manually fed "conveyor" (a Metro shelf) that goes from one end to the other, fans inside to circulate the air, and a temperature controller to maintain 55F. I really enjoy making things like this -- just wish I had (a LOT) more time to do it. The controller will arrive Monday or Tuesday, and we plan on ordering the freezer itself tomorrow. We'll share photos and let you know how it works as soon as we have it put together.

Can't wait!!!

David and Leslie