Thanks again to my friend Erin for these beans!
If you read my review of Origen’s Mexico Oaxaca beans, you’ll remember I noted that this roaster seems to roast on the darker side, as the beans were pretty dark and shiny. The roast level is definitely darker than what seems to be the norm amongst popular third-wave roasters like Intelligentsia and Counter Culture.
Regarding these coffee tastings, I have gotten comments from friends to the effect of, “Wow, I don’t think I could ever pick up on all the flavors you can in coffee! It all kind of tastes the same to me!” I have two theories on this. First, I don’t think that it’s impossible to develop one’s palate if you take the time and really think about what you’re eating/drinking. I certainly am no supertaster! Second, I think at a certain point, all coffees DO taste the same if they are roasted long enough. Once the beans get to a certain level of “doneness,” the origin flavors of the beans will get eclipsed by the roasting process. It’s not dissimilar to steak, and how it’ll be much more difficult to tell what cut of meat a steak is when it is well done vs. when it is rare or medium rare. Well-done steak will taste more of the cooking process, while medium-rare steak will retain more of the meat’s characteristic flavor/texture.
Whole bean: Oily, shiny beans. Ground, there is a slight hint of stone fruit and dark chocolate.
V60: Tastes like coffee. I really only taste the roast level and no characteristics of the bean’s origin. It is not bitter or burnt tasting, but I cannot distinguish any real difference between this Tanzanian and the Mexican coffee beans I had earlier in the week.
AeroPress: Dark and a little spicy. Fine to drink straight with no acidity issues; nice body to this cup.
Chemex: This cup had a little sweetness in it that the others thus far did not. Smelled a bit like Nilla wafers.
French press: Smooth cup that was reminiscent of dark chocolate. Rich body.
Summary: These beans are great if you enjoy a smooth, dark cup of coffee. I think the French press version was the most enjoyable overall for its smoothness and chocolate flavor, but it doesn’t match the roaster’s notes at all in my opinion.
From the roaster: Complex, bright, red berries, apricot, sweet