I had no expectations of having a decent coffee during my last visit to China, but Kona Café in Qindao was a pleasant surprise.
Owned by an expatriate Korean lady - Aileen who has the coffee fresh roasted in Korea and shipped in weekly. Aileen is very careful not to consume the coffee while it is too fresh - aiming for an optimum 7 to 12 days.
Jocelyn 黄光艳 was the standout barista and is seen here preparing my "double ristretto, 3/4 latte" - or as close to it as my Mandarin would allow. I think she did quite a good job, and I got a consistent coffee for the 12 days that I was there.
You can see the little La Marzocco 2 Group is well cared for. Steam wands cleaned, baskets rinsed. Jocelyn shuts of the pump at around 17 seconds. The shots are a little long and perhaps too quick, but showed no signs of blonding and she always got a nice thick crema.
The location is good, the food is good - the UHT Milk is a definite bummer - but do expect to do some serious passive smoking inside. I chose to sit outside in the pleasant 1ºC reasonably clean air.
Once again, filmed in 1920 x 1080P @ 30 fps using my baby Sanyo Xacti VPC-HD1010, but this time I took the native MP4s straight into Final Cut Studio and had no issues. This previously was not possible, so perhaps Apple has added support in one of the incremental upgrades.