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Quill’s Coffee - El Eden, Guerrero, Mexico

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I was born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky.  I lived the first 19 years of my life in that city, and never once stepped foot inside of Quill’s Coffee.  Well, that isn’t true, I walked in there once.  Flash forward to a few years ago when I started getting more into coffee, and I was trying a lot of Quill’s offerings, as I wanted to see what I had been missing out on.  Two coffees specifically jumped out to me last year, and both part of Quill’s Top Shelf line of offerings, the Kiungu Kenya and El Eden Mexico.  I don’t know exactly what captivated me about this coffee, but I know I went through about 6 bags of it over the span of the summer, and frequently bought it on brew bar locally at Collective Espresso.  While I have had a few other Quill’s coffees this year, I wanted this to be the offering I first wrote about.  It is a bit out of character for me as I’m not the largest natural fan, but let us discover the El Eden, Mexico from Quill’s Coffee.    

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Jacu Coffee Roastery - Monte Copey Costa Rica - Kaffebox - August 2014 

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We have a very exciting treat for you today.  Lately I have been intrigued by several overseas roasters- seeing their offerings in shops around the US or plugging in with them and their baristas on social media.  I was tipped off by a fellow coffee enthusiast about a subscription service that focuses on fresh Scandinavian offerings.  That service is Kaffebox, and we decided to give it a go.  It’s quite a desirable service, really, especially if you have been interested in trying out roasters you cannot typically order from for a reasonable price.  You can select several sizes, filter or espresso, even whole bean or various grind sizes. It was even desirable to see that the beans arrived on my doorstep right around 8-9 days off roast, with the hopes of bringing that even closer in the future. For this style of roast, that is a pretty great window to receive beans from the roaster here in the US.  Kaffebox has features roasters such as The Coffee Collective, Koppi, Kaffa, and today’s roaster: Jacu Coffee Roastery and their Monte Copey Costa Rica.

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Terminus Coffee - Ethiopia Aricha

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Just a little over a month ago we sat down with the debut of Terminus Coffee, the micro-roasting operation that grew from our very loved friends in Tacoma, WA: The Puristas.  What has always been so alluring about this duo is their pursuit of relationship through their journey in coffee.  In one moment one can easily head to Purista’s site and read their poetic cup-by-cup experience with a roaster’s offering, much like here, Corner of the Cafe, or The Coffee Adventures, or one can follow Mae’s progression with latte art on their Instagram account, or even get more intimate with the inner workings of Terminus through their Twitter feed.  

From early on I had been looking forward to sitting down with this coffee.  I already had high expectations, seeing as the Populace Aricha was such an outstanding and memorable coffee for me.  However, I know that David has been working to dial these coffees into something quite unique and impressive for what some might still deem as a “home roasted operation.”  Rocking a Huky 500, Terminus Coffee comes out of the tunnel speeding and showing you exactly how delicious exceptionally prepared and sourced coffees can taste, and quickly setting themselves up to be among some of the most respected and appreciate roasters to drink from.  Let’s dive into the lovely Ethiopia, Aricha.  

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Supersonic Coffee Co. - Chelelectu, Ethiopia

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Ruby’s Chelelektu really opened my eyes to what an exceptionally sourced and processed washed Ethiopian can taste like.  When PERC’s Chelelektu arrived at my door I was able to experience that yet again.  While nearly every washed Ethiopian coffee that has been brewed here this year has been stellar, this particular region is a bit special to me.  When I opened my package from Supersonic Coffee and saw that my second bag (another washed Ethiopian) was also from Chelelectu, I didn’t know what to expect.  I was a bit nervous at first that I’d hyped it up too much from all the buzz going around, and hadn’t had any experience of what a coffee sourced from Nordic Approach would be like, or if it had any difference.  All that was left was to dig into it and find out.  Here’s Chelelectu, Ethiopia.  

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Supersonic Coffee Co. - Wote, Ethiopia

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There has been quite a stir about upcoming Berkeley, CA roasters Supersonic Coffee Company.  I saw aesthetically pleasing tube samples from them in SCAA reports, saw Alpha Dominche brewing their coffees up, and most recently a lot of buzz surrounding their co-pilot program that gave 10 shops across the US the ability to serve and sell their coffee for the next two month before their public launch.  There’s also quite the chatter on social media about them, and a lot of talk among the coffee professionals as well.  As much can be expected though, with the names of those affiliated as well as having Nordic Approach be among the importers they will be receiving green from.  I was lucky enough to get a peek behind a few of their samples, the first of which we’ll look at is their Wote, Ethiopia.  

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Novel Coffee Roasters - El Meridiano Colombia

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There is something so lovely about story.  Something about letting the imagination run, getting caught up in the words, the lines, the pages.  Curling up with a good story and just getting lost.  Story can be so vivid, so haunting, so poetic and piercing.  The details unraveling bit by bit until you get the whole picture… the whole story.  The folks behind Novel Coffee Roasters know all about it, and know there is more than just the story behind the coffee, there is the story of the coffee.  The brilliant dance- the beauty within the binding.  Today we are looking at the second offering from Novel, another example of great sourcing and undistracted roasting to provide you with your moment to get lost in the story.  Today’s story is El Meridiano, Colombia.   

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Novel Coffee Roasters - Gedeo Konga Ethiopia

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Founded in early 2013 by Kevin Betts and Ryan Smith, Novel Coffee Roasters was born in Dallas, TX out of the desire to share profound taste experiences with our community.  Aside from having a very recognizable brand and aesthetically stellar logo and the tag line “Every Coffee Has A Story”, the duo knows that every seed is cultivated, harvested, processed, traded, shipped, roasted, and prepared before it reaches your cup.  It is then their goal that every person involved in this process is treated fairly and rewarded for their work.  All this is evident as we dive into the first offering we have of theirs, their Ethiopia, Yirgacheffe Gedeo Konga.

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PERC Coffee - Costa Rica Flor De Cafe

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For fans of: hard cider, hitting things with bats, and state fairs.
PERC Coffee has now graced our pages four times, which is four times too few if you ask me.  We’ve seen Top Shelf Collection offerings and regular offerings alike, and again, if you asked me I’d tell you it makes not a difference in the quality you will receive.  That being said, we have yet another Costa Rican offering from PERC on our hands, this one selected as a Top Shelf Offering.  I love getting two offerings from the same region from the same roaster, without it being a washed and natural Ethiopia or something like that with almost drastically different characteristics.  Let’s dive in and see if we can figure out what sets this offering apart from the Carrizal we visited earlier.  Let us get into Costa Rica Flor De Cafe.  

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PERC Coffee - Costa Rica Carrizal

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For fans of: washed Ethiopians, geocaching, and listening to vinyl.  

I was on a hunt this year to try more coffees from Costa Rica.  Fortunately for me, the folks at Savannah’s PERC have two excellent Costa Rican offerings, and they landed here in Cincinnati.  While we’ve only seen one other Costa review up this season, there will be many more in the coming weeks.  You may recognize PERC’s name, as several outstanding offerings from them have crossed the blog over the past few months.  Getting to experience multiple roasts and multiple regions from this roaster, I can now safely say they are growing into one of my favorite roasters.  Not only that, but their social media presence and ease of communication is admirable.  Today I’m excited to dig into the first of these two offerings, the Costa Rica Carrizal.  

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MADCAP - Elefante

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From very early in my specialty coffee drinking there were always two favorites: Kuma and Madcap.  I know you’ve heard it a dozen times but it’s true.  One thing I love about Madcap is the amount of detail they provide about the history of the coffees they select.  It’s a small detail, but I love a roaster who likes to provide the story behind the bean, and not just… the bean.  I feel like I get to read the diary of Madcap and their intention of their selections, and in part, I think that makes me feel closer to the coffees too.  This is why I like to have farm details when I do write-ups.  Aside from the fact that it helps me understand the terroir, the hardships, the varietal or processing, it just gives me a bit more of the history.  Today, we are in for a treat.  From the Rodriguez family of El Porvenir in El Salvador, Madcap brings us the rare Elefante varietal.

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Dillano’s Coffee Roasters - Ethiopia Gedeo - Mistobox - July 2014

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When Dillano’s started roasting on a small 20-pound coffee roaster, two things were immediately apparent: roasting excellent coffee takes unwavering commitment, and it takes more than great coffee for retailers to thrive in a competitive business environment.  So, they immersed themselves in the specialty coffee industry, learning how to source the best coffees from around the globe and meticulously roast them to their full potential. They also created an internal culture that valued fun, creativity, and integrity, seeking employees who believed in the culture as much as they did.  They focused their energies on building meaningful, rewarding customer relationships, striving to give their customers more than they expected. As They near their 20th anniversary, They are proud to say that they still live by these same values every day.  As the Mistomobile makes its final stop through the renown coffee mecca of Washington, they pop into Sumner, Washington where we visit Dillano’s Ethiopia Gedeo.

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Spyhouse Coffee - Colombia Santiago Joven - Mistobox - July 2014

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I’ve wanted to try Spyhouse for awhile now… pretty much a long while.  From their gorgeous logo to gorgeous shop aesthetics to their “hard” descriptors on most selections, they seem to be hitting everything right.  Every time I browsed the selections though, I could never make my mind up about what to chose.  Lucky for us, the Mistomobile is selecting some awesome stops for us, and consequently some awesome offerings from across the US, and across the spectrum.  One of their key destinations was Minneapolis, MN’s Spyhouse Coffee Roasters.   Founded by Christian Johnson, Spyhouse began as a small, independent coffeehouse emphasizing mid-century design, exhibiting local artists, and encouraging social interaction. Over the years, attention to the quality of the craft of coffee took on a more dominant role, thus transforming Spyhouse to what it is today.  Today, we are looking at the Santiago Joven, Colombia.  

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OQ Coffee Co - Ethiopia Nigusie Lemma Estate - Mistobox - July 2014 

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After a quick stop in Maine for Connor and the gang to grab some lobster, they made the best of the coastal drive and swung into OQ Coffee.  

OQ Coffee Co. is a specialty coffee roasting company and shop located in Highland Park, New Jersey- a stone’s throw from Rutgers University, across the Raritan River.  They focus on unique and delicious, single origin coffees, sourced directly, craft-roasted, and brewed to perfection. We look for sustainability at origin and promote the same, here at home, in New Jersey.

Their passion for coffee grew out of two realizations:

  • High quality coffee is delicious; and

  • coffee has great potential to create community.

As such, they are not just a business roasting coffee; they are also a social enterprise with a passion to transform communities in New Jersey and communities around the world.  Today we visit a coffee that meets both of those realizations, today we take a look at the Nigusie Estate, Ethiopia.

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Brown Coffee Co - El Salvador Finca El Rosario - Mistobox - July 2014

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For July’s Mistobox the crew fired up the Mistomobile and took us on a roadtrip around the US.  After picking up Seth in Arizona, our first stop crosses the Lone Star State of Texas and lands us in San Antonio.

The more I drink coffees from El Salvador, like this one we’ll look at today from The Brown Coffee Company, the more I think I can justify making this statement: El Salvador produces some of the most friendly coffees of any drinking region.  It wasn’t so long ago that I said that coffees from here confuse me, leaving it hard for me to categorize their characteristics.  Some are super fruity, several are nutty and more savory, others are juicy and relaxing.  I think through all of this one thread I’ve seen woven through all the offerings is that they are easily approachable whether one is “into” specialty coffee or not.  This region, more than any other aside from Colombia, produces incredibly drinkable coffees in just about any way you like it, with the added bonus of some great cup characteristics that one may experience differently depending on which you pick up.  Today, we sit down with El Salvador Finca El Rosario.

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Ruby Coffee Roasters - Kenya Kamwangi Peaberry

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Ruby Coffee Roasters, taking 2014 by storm.  I have visited several of Jared’s offerings so far, and every one has been outstanding.  When I ordered one of his shirts last month he dropped me a sample of some of this peaberry.  The thing about Ruby Coffee is that you get insanely fresh, seasonal, and clean tasting coffees.  As a recap, just the taste of the coffees I’ve tried since his opening this year has put Ruby into my top 5 roasters list.  The fresh factor is something I’m really loving, as you get prime crop, and deliciously clean roasts.  The only downside, as we see today, is this offering is no longer available to you, which is a shame because it is also one of the highlight coffees I’ve had all year.  Don’t be sad, brothers and sisters, we can still reminisce together.  Let’s cry together over a recap of Kenya Kamwangi Peaberry.

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