Review: Blue Bottle Coffee Giant Steps (Oakland, California)

James Freeman, the founder of Blue Bottle, is a former professional clarinet player, and I’ve always appreciated the occasional musical references thrown into the names and descriptions of his company’s coffees (for instance, the “Brahmsian” characteristics of Blue Bottle’s Hayes Valley Espresso). This particular blend was named after John Coltrane’s Giant Steps, and Blue Bottle’s […]

Review: Intelligentsia Coffee Black Cat Analog Espresso (Chicago, Illinois)

The first time I tried Intelligentsia’s Black Cat Analog Espresso was in a coffee shop. I was in Northern California for work back in 2015 and had a beautifully pulled shot at Vero’s Coffee Bar in San Jose. I enjoyed it so much, I use the photo of it that I took as an example […]

Review: Gordon St Coffee Glasgow Roast (Glasgow, Scotland)

In early July, I was traveling for work for about a week, and I had limited access to coffee. While I was grateful that my AirBnB provided a Keurig, I found the flavor to be really depressing compared to what I’m used to having. Quality coffee is one of my little luxuries in life, so […]

Review: Whiskey Morning Coffee Classic Barrel Aged Coffee (Tolar, Texas)

I had the pleasure of chatting with some of the folks behind Whiskey Morning Coffee recently, and we arranged for me to try out their beans in exchange for a review. As you may have guessed from their name, what sets this company apart from most other coffee roasters is that they specialize in roasting […]

Review: 49th Parallel Coffee Roasters Old School Espresso (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada)

Of the seven bags of coffee I purchased during my time in Vancouver, I’d say this bag from 49th Parallel was the only one specifically marketed as espresso (the Matchstick Catalogue No. 39 was described as being fine for both espresso and coffee), so I was pretty excited to see what it would be like […]

Review: Rare Earth Coffee House Roast (Fresno, California)

I was contacted by the folks at Rare Earth Coffee about testing out a couple of their coffees. Rare Earth Coffee is a relatively new addition to the coffee scene; the company was founded in 2014 in the Central Valley of California. One aspect of this company that sets them apart from most is their […]

Review: Sparrow Coffee Kenya Iriguini (Chicago, Illinois)

I’ve written up a bit more detail regarding Sparrow Coffee in my review of their Ethiopia Guji, but for anyone unfamiliar with them, Sparrow is known for being one of Chicago’s most exclusive roasters, providing custom coffee blends for a long list of Michelin-starred restaurants. I picked up this single-origin at their roastery location in […]

Review: Abacus Coffee Roasters Algorithm Blend (Chicago, Illinois)

I bought this bag from the folks at Javaya, whom I’ve written about before. I had a short trip to Chicago planned back in mid-February and I initially thought I might be able to make time to purchase this from Abacus directly, but I soon figured out there was no way I’d have the time […]

Review: Volcán de Fuego 1895 Single-Estate Coffee (San Diego, California)

When the folks at Volcán de Fuego reached out to me about trying some of their beans, they won me over quite quickly mainly because of their very clear dedication to freshness and quality. The fact that I’m quite fond of Guatemalan coffee didn’t hurt either! Volcán de Fuego’s 1895 (named after their processing plant […]

Review: Iconik Coffee Roasters Holiday Blend Luminaria (Santa Fe, New Mexico)

Santa Fe, New Mexico was one of the places I was able to visit in the period between Christmas and New Year’s Eve this past winter, and while coffee sourcing wasn’t my first priority (family time was!), I did make a little bit of an effort to see if there were notable coffee roasters/cafes within […]