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Review #59: Big Shoulders Coffee


Name of Roaster: Big Shoulders Coffee Location of Roaster (City, State, Country): Chicago, IL

Name of Roast: Ethiopia Limu Type of Roast (Light, Medium, Dark): Light Origin of Beans: Limu, Ethiopia Price: $21 (12 oz.) Brewing Method (Drip, Chemex, AeroPress, etc.): Chemex Time Between Purchase and Brewing (Ballpark is fine): Thirty Days Aroma: Opening the bag, we noted rich milk chocolate, baking spices, raspberry jam, and chocolate brownie with crisped edges. The grind revealed warmer scents and was slightly savory in nature, reminiscent of chicken broth, with a soft scent of Mexican spiced chocolate following. On the pour, a caramelizing white cane sugar dominates, with the savory broth lingering underneath.

Flavor Profile: The coffee had a low-to-mid-entry, exhibiting a balanced full body that enveloped the palate. The coffee's aromatics rose high while the coffee flowed to the back of the tongue. Hazelnut, mid-percentage dark chocolate, agave syrup, chocolate cookie crust, and slight toasted marshmallow were noted, along with a rounded hint of orange underneath. As the coffee cooled, it began to show a floral note on the entry, along with a bright citrus reminiscent of grapefruit.

Overall Impression (What did you think of it? Anything else we should know?): This was a well-balanced and pleasurable cup that worked well alone or with milk. The broth-like aroma was unexpected, but the flavors on the tongue belie the olfactory inclinations. This is a coffee that you can drink on a day-to-day for weeks and be happy. For anyone traveling to downtown Chicago, we recommend popping into Big Shoulders and picking up a bag. The Loop location is rather close to the Clark/Lake stop, so if you're coming in from O'Hare or making your way back from Union Station to Michigan Avenue, it is perfectly situated. Kudos to Big Shoulders' personable baristas for providing the recommendation to us of this lovely coffee. Final Score (1-10, with 10 being the best cup of coffee in your life): 8.3 Where to Buy: Big Shoulders Coffee Looking to do a review of your own? Hop over to the Community and get to it!

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