Hi, everyone! As 2019 has come to a close, we wanted to recap our top ten coffees that we reviewed over the past calendar year. Below is our list, along with a brief description and a link to the full review. We hope that we were able to introduce you to new coffees and new roasters last year, and we look forward to continuing to showcase and promote local craft roasters in the coming year. With that said, to our countdown, and to auld lang syne!
10. Rare Bird Coffee Roasters - Los Haipes
This Falls Church, Virginia, roaster's coffee had a light-to-medium entry high on the palate, light-bodied and fruit forward, with notes of nectarine, soft raspberry, blood orange, cranberry, guava, and fruit punch, along with an undercurrent of dark chocolate. Rating: 8.4. Full Review.
9. Fazenda Camocim - Fazenda Maravilha Pedra Azul
The first entry on our year-end list from a Brazilian roaster, this coffee showed blueberry, mocha, brown sugar, toasted pecan, mango, and wet slate. Viscous and full on the tongue, while light and nimble in aromatics, this coffee was a standout. Rating; 8.4. Full Review.
8. Essence Coffee Roasters - Kenya Gititu
From Iroquois, South Dakota, this roaster crafted a Kenyan coffee showing rich, lush chocolate, soft cherry, apple, a touch of blood orange, and cranberry, along with lime and orange. Rating: 8.4. Full Review.
7. Blanchard's Coffee Roasting Co. - Quirk Coffee
Delicate, with tropical notes (pineapple, papaya, creamsicle) and florals floating above a base of low-percentage dark chocolate, this coffee that a Richmond, Virginia roaster created for a boutique hotel provided a lush, creamy decadence. Rating: 8.4. Full Review.
6. Allegro Coffee Roasters - Kenya Zuri
Full-bodied, with mixed notes of chocolate, rounded lime, sharp orange juice, and a jam of blackberry and currant, before a cinnamon bun finish, this was a lovely Kenyan from an established Colorado roaster. Rating: 8.4. Full Review.
5. The Boy & The Bear - La Riviera
Returning from last year, this Redondo Beach, California roaster's coffee was bombastic and arresting, coating the palate in bergamot, mixed citrus, orange peel, cinnamon, and peach marmalade, while a rich dark chocolate is found underneath the fruit and as a base layer on the aromatics. Rating: 8.5. Full Review.
4. Saint-Henri - Oscar et Luis Monge
Our lone Canadian entry this year, this coffee from a Montreal roaster was incredibly well-balanced, with a calming, luxurious feel reminiscent of a cozy, warm blanket. Viscous and rich, with warm, dark chocolate, nougat, pecan, muddled orange jam, a touch of guava, and then a wave of caramel and toffee, we enjoyed this coffee's smooth finish. Rating: 8.5. Full Review.
3. Destroyer/Roseline Coffee - Keramo
This coffee from Roseline, a Portland roaster, for Destroyer, a café in Los Angeles, showed a flavor profile that was wild and undulating, with honey, ripe melon, bergamot, and guava appearing in phases. Body developed as the coffee cooled, giving rise to a honeyed finish. Rating: 8.7. Full Review.
2. Modcup Coffee Co. - Colombia Valle Del Cauca Cerro Azul Geisha [Direct Trade]
Wild, bright, and floral, this coffee from a New Jersey roaster showed notes of lemongrass, jasmine, orange juice, passion fruit, guava, papaya, jasmine tea, and hint of pineapple, all over a base of dark chocolate and cocoa nibs. Rating: 8.9. Full Review.
1. Corvus Coffee Roasters - Gesha Village Auction Lot
Our highest-rated coffee yet, this stunner from Corvus, a Colorado roaster, showed vibrant notes of cocoa powder, toffee, wild honey, jasmine, florals, Guji apple, and soft blood orange, then muddled cranberry, marmalade, and red apple, and finally florals, jasmine, and white tea. Rating: 9.1. Full Review.