I’ve had this blog for roughly five years, and I go through phases where I am really active, writing a lot of reviews, and also phases where I go quiet. Around about December of 2019, I started getting a little overwhelmed with life and I somewhat unintentionally took a hiatus from coffee reviews – I didn’t even make up my Best of 2019 list, which I plan to remedy soon – and then, of course, the coronavirus situation started dominating all of our lives in early 2020, and I could hardly spare a thought to writing.
Around March of this year, the kind folks at Kona Roasted Coffee reached out to me about my willingness to do reviews; I explained that I was on a bit of a hiatus but their company and coffee seemed to align so well with my taste that I said I’d be happy to do so if they didn’t mind a bit of a delay in the review (thank you for your patience – I know I’ve kept you waiting a while!!).
Hawaiian coffee is famous for its smooth character. It’s also known for being expensive, which is why it’s more common to find Kona blends for sale rather than single-origins. Kona Roasted Coffee is a company specializing in single-origin Hawaiian coffees, roasted fresh to order and shipped only in whole bean format for maximum quality.
Whole bean: Salvador is a single-origin coffee from the Kailua-Kona area of Hawaii. I was super excited when I opened up the bag because I could see that the beans were beautifully roasted, with no oil on the surface and a lovely even medium-roast color.
French press: This was the first brewing method I tried. The coffee was very, very smooth – no bitterness or sour flavor whatsoever! This is why people pay premium prices for Hawaiian coffee, in my opinion. I felt this method resulted in a very subtly flavored coffee – almost too subtle? I was left wishing for a little bit more flavor, but there was nothing I didn’t like about what was in my cup.
AeroPress: This method brought out a bit of aroma and flavor like baked bread, with that smooth texture I found in the French press cup. Comforting and delicious.
Hario V60: Now we’re talking! In my opinion, pourover methods bring out the flavor notes of these beans more effectively than the immersion methods. At a 2:32 extraction time, this coffee had a nice dry finish with lots of toasty, sugary flavor on the back end. More interesting and layered flavors vs. the first two cups, but still extremely approachable.
Chemex: This was my favorite method for these beans, hands down. Amazing sweet flavors of brioche and caramelized sugar. I can’t think of a better way to enjoy this coffee than on a weekend morning with some French toast!
Summary: What a treat to get to try this amazing single-origin Hawaiian coffee. If you are interested in trying a 100% Kona and want to support a company that exudes care and quality in every aspect of what they do, give Kona Roasted a try. A percentage of each sale goes toward protecting our oceans and beaches as part of the 1% for our Planet initiative.
From the roaster: sweet spice, citrus blossom, toasted brioche
Review conducted 14-16 days post-roast.
Disclaimer: I received this product gratis in exchange for a fair and honest review. Even though I received this for free, I treat and test it the same way as if I had paid for it out of my own pocket.