Coffees Mugged and Rating [see key]:
- Joe Van Gogh: Nicaragua Selva Negra 5
- Larry's Coffee: Colombia Fonco Paez 5
Sleuthing out great coffee is something I really enjoy. Much like Indiana Jones thrives on risking his life to unearth forgotten or really-hard-to-find artifacts, I love seeking out great coffees from great roasters. And while much of my social circle does not share this passion, it seems I have a few kindred spirits in the folks behind the subscription coffee service Boxo.
Created to find the best coffees from the best local roasters, each month Boxo purveys two top-notch coffees from two different roasters from the same city. With a great pedigree of coffee roasting partners, I was easily intrigued to try out a shipment myself.
The box expediently arrived with coffee from two roasters out of the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill triangle: a Colombia Fonco Paez from Larry's Coffee and a Nicaragua Selva Negra from Joe Van Gogh. Both coffees I brewed using pourover, french press and siphon methods.
The Colombian from Larry was first to the table. The pourover sang of sourdough toast, sweet butter, chocolate, macadamia nut, plum, dates and nutmeg in a medium body; a sweet brew with some deep notes. The french press resonated notes of nuts, toast, apple, milk chocolate, nutmeg and dates, proving sweet and rich. Finally the siphon finished the series with the a delightfully rich brew of sourdough, chocolate, nuts, dates, apple and a little romaine. All together, a solid coffee with a profile full of nuts and dried fruit.
The Nicaraguan from Joe Van Gogh batted next, starting off with a pourover swimming in peanuts, pear, wheat grass, sugar cookie and malt in a medium/heavy body. The french press lightened up a bit and proved more vibrant, full of pear, vanilla cookie, cranberry, cashew, seaweed salad and chocolate malt. The siphon rounded out the experience with a subtly sweet infusion of cookies, pear, nuts, nougat, iceberg lettuce and whole milk. In the end, a terrific coffee with sweet and tangy facets.
As subscription boxes go, I liked what I got in Boxo. The coffees proved delicious and unlike some services, there was plenty to go around for at least a week or two. If you seek a coffee subscription based on the adventure of exploring coffees city by city, definitely check out Boxo.
note: coffee was provided free of charge and the above review is objective feedback.