I’ve only had Novel Coffee once before (their Ethiopia Idido) but enjoyed it very much, so when I visited Trio Craft Coffee recently and saw fresh bags of this Guatemala Chimaltenango on their shelves, I snapped one up faster than you can say “chemex.”
Whole bean: Bright, lively aroma. HONEY. Really, really strong scent of raw honey. Hint of apple as well, but the overwhelming character of this was honey.
V60: Considering the sweet scent of the beans, this was a surprisingly savory coffee. Hints of cocoa and kelp. Smooth but not very sweet in the cup. 3:30 extraction.
AeroPress: As a concentrate, this had a rich body with the flavor of red apple peels and lemon. Upon adding a bit of water, the lemon flavor dissipated and it became a more generic “coffee” flavor.
Chemex: 4:00 extraction. Very similar to the V60 cup; delicate brew with a hint of kelp. Not very sweet.
French press: Medium-bodied with apple flavor and a hint of kelp.
Summary: This wasn’t a bad coffee, but to me, it was a case of unmet expectations. Since the beans smelled SO sweet and honey-esque, I was expecting something rather different in the cup than I got. Granted, I think most coffees smell different ground vs. brewed, but when you smell raw honey and get kelp? Yeah, not exactly what I was after.
From the roaster: Lively apple, nougat, amber honey