I really enjoy trying beans from many different roasters so I thought I'd get in on the action with the 12 roasters challenge.
I like all sorts of drinks from an Espresso, Americano, Flat White and Latte from my Sage Dual Boiler, to brewed coffee,primarily through a v60 and French press. I like to try most beans in both espresso based and brewed drinks so will try and write down my thoughts on all methods tested on the different beans. I prefer a medium/lighter roast bean with some interesting flavours - fruity, floral, bright, sweet etc.
I subscribe to the Dog & Hat Sub which I'm really enjoying! This means it won't be a struggle to include the 12 roasters but I also like to buy separately from various roasters too so I'll try and keep it interesting!
Any comments about anything I write are, of course, welcome
So, to kick off, something a bit special (in my opinion).
Firstly, a quick mention on customer service. These were ordered as a Christmas gift mid way through December. They hadn't turned up by ~22nd so I sent an e-mail to them. They immediately put another lot in the post and both packages turned up the next day! Fantastic customer service even during the very busy Christmas period.
Colonna roast in 4 different 'Genres'.
Foundation - Clean, Aromatic, Sweet, Quality
Discovery - Exciting, Expressive, Distinctive profiles
Rare - Exclusive, Rare, Unique
Decaf - ...Decaf
I went for one of each from the Discovery, Rare and Decaf genres and was not disappointed! These were definitely some of the best coffees I've tasted! I've finished one of the sets of 3, the other still resides in the freezer
Discovery - Honduras - Francis Arturo Romero - £12 for £250g
Roasters Notes - Big fruit flavours. Plum and pineapple upfront followed by a deliciously sweet treacle finish
This Honduran natural was (and still is) fantastic. It had more of a strawberry taste to me but definitely sweet on the finish. It had some subtle acidity but mostly a sweetness that made it very moreish as both a filter brew and as a flat white. The flavours easily punched through milk!
Rare - Guatemala - Concepcion Pixcaya Coe - £15 for 150g
Roasters Notes - Bold lime acidity, forest fruits, hoppy finish
Bright, tangy and refreshing. This was the pick of the bunch. Very high acidity with a fruity edge.
I've only had this through a v60 as, in my opinion, that's where bright coffees shine. I also didn't fancy wasting any of this whilst dialling in, as it was in short supply! This will be one of my coffees of the year, for sure!
Decaf - Colombia - San Augustin - Sugarcane Decaf - £12 for 250g
Roasters Notes - Red wine & plum - Sweet honey finish
Like many, I've struggled to get a great decaf with any sort of fruitiness, acidity or complexity. This one promised a lot on the complexity side and almost delivered. There's a hint of deep fruit at the beginning. What is unmistakable however, is that honey finish! It's exceptional! I've had this brewed, as espresso, flat white and latte. I'd say as an espresso, the honey shines! It punches through milk drinks very nicely indeed for a decaf too. I don't think I've ever had a decaf I can highly recommend for a filter brew. This one comes close but still lacks something.
All in all, I am delighted with the Colonna offering. Superb beans which is no surprise if you've been to their Colonna and Smalls café in Bath. Fantastic!