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Review #98: The Boy & The Bear

Name of Roaster: The Boy and The Bear

Location of Roaster (City, State, Country): Redondo Beach, California

Name of Roast: La Riviera Type of Roast (Light, Medium, Dark): Light

Origin of Beans: Santa Rosa de Cabal, Colombia Price: $19 (16 oz.) Brewing Method (Drip, Chemex, AeroPress, etc.): Chemex Time Between Purchase and Brewing (Ballpark is fine): Over Six Months Aroma: Tearing open the pouch, aromas of rich, bright baked brownie, milk chocolate ganache, graham cracker, honey, touch of spearmint, and cocoa nibs wafted forth. The coffee brightened on the grind, with cranberry, ripe apple, and blackberry showing beneath a spiced chocolate. On the pour, light caramel, light brown sugar, and refined white cane sugar appeared on the nose.

Flavor Profile: The first sip was bombastic and arresting, with a bright entry high on the palate. Slightly acidic, the coffee's flavor clung to the roof of the mouth, coating the palate in bergamot and mixed citrus - mandarin orange, nectarine, lemon, lime - before dropping to the back of the tongue. Exploring on additional sips, we noted that the sides of the tongue catch orange peel, cinnamon, and peach marmalade, while a rich dark chocolate is found underneath the fruit and as a base layer on the aromatics. The tip of the tongue provide flavors of bright red berry, such as pomegranate or tart cherry. A sugary finish, light and balanced, rounds out the sip.

Overall Impression (What did you think of it? Anything else we should know?): We purchased this coffee as a sample pack from The Boy and The Bear during a visit to their Culver City shop a number of months ago. Holding 30 grams of coffee, the recommendation on the package was to brew the coffee with 405 grams of water, which we converted to roughly 1.75 cups. The flavors were not lacking despite the lag time between purchase and brewing, and we were taken aback by the bold, vibrant flavor and how much it differed from the coffee we previously reviewed from this roaster (see our prior review below). We recommend that this coffee be taken black to enjoy the full flavor, as the addition of milk mellowed the experience greatly. The coffee paired well with avocado toast and marinated tomatoes, and we fully recommend this coffee when it comes back in stock, as it provides supreme summertime vibes.

Final Score (1-10, with 10 being the best cup of coffee in your life): 8.5. Where to Buy: The Boy & The Bear

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