Sunday, January 13, 2013
Mugged: Ideal Brew
Subject: Ideal Brew
- Organic Guatemalan Santa Rosa from Harvest Cafe
- Guatemala Huehuetenango from B Java Coffee
Rating [see key]: both 3+
I often love trying new coffees, though an untested bean has always the risk of disappointment. I suppose that fear is what has given rise to the popularity of many coffee subscription services. If you lack the skills needed to discern a potentially good coffee, why not have someone else more qualified choose it for you?
One of the more recent to appear on my radar is Ideal Brew. Still in beta form, they seek out good roasters and send you three bags of three different coffees. Back in November, I had an opportunity to try out their current shipment and now that the tale has made it to the front of the PCB queue. I had the opportunity to try out their Organic Guatemalan Santa Rosa from Harvest Cafe and Guatemala Huehuetenango from B Java Coffee, both roasters out of Indianapolis. Given the small quantity, I only sampled them by drip and french press infusions.
B Java's Guatemala Huehuetenango via drip produced a deep coffee, with notes of malt, curry, a little clove and a touch of oregano. The french press proved similar with elements of malt, buttered biscuit, clove and oregano amidst a medium body. All around this coffee painted a deep, spiced coffee with a caustic after-bite.
The Santa Rosa from Harvest Cafe faired a bit better, with the drip painting a portrait of apples, cloves, sassafras, cola and a touch of cream. The french press delivered corn, cocoa-ish malt, sassafras, oregano and a little milk. Both infusions held an slight darkness, a deep quality akin to prune and malt with an overall sweetness that loosely balanced it all out.
While I can say I preferred the Santa Rosa of the two, I can't say I really cared for either coffee. Thus, given the task of Ideal Brew to farm out the best coffees to try each month, I can't say I would be signing up to try coffee like this again, as I am not a fan of dark coffee. But if you're a fan of coffees on the fringe of darkly roasted, you might want to give Ideal Brew and/or these two coffees a go.
note: coffee was provided free of charge and the above review is objective feedback.