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Single Origin Coffees of the Season

scarmoza May 25, 2011 04:59 PM

Anyone got any super awesome locally roasted or green coffee beans to report on lately?

I can't seem to get over the Worka (Ethiopia - Yirgacheffe - Gedeo) roasted by Verve. I tend to favor dry process Ethiopian coffees and love to find hints of blueberry in the cup and this one is has it going on. It reminds me a lot of the Amaro Gayo Sidamo (roasted by Barefoot). I fell in love with that one last year (but the Worka isn't as powerful in the blueberry spectrum).

Still, I'm always looking for coffees that stand out above all the rest of the great coffees we have such easy access to in the Bay Area. My hope is that we might find others with similar tastes who can tip us off on good finds.

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  1. r
    Ridge RE: scarmoza May 25, 2011 08:59 PM

    What a great thread to start. I tried the Worka and Amaro coffees from Novo coffee (not local, purchased online) a while back and really enjoyed them. My favorite coffees are dry processed Ethiopians and good lots of Yemen mokka. I usually make espresso in the morning (from a semi automatic).

    Lately I have been tending to get my beans from Blue Bottle. Of their current coffees, my favorite is the Ethiopia Sidamo Nura Korate Farmers Co-op. I think it’s the only Ethiopian dry-process coffee they are currently offering. It’s really outstanding and makes a distinctive and satisfying espresso. Low acid and smooth, somewhat cocoa like with complex flavors.

    I’m not sure if it’s still available but for a while they had Sulawesi Toarco in regular and peaberry. I usually like peaberries but this was one case where I really preferred the non-peaberry version. I highly recommend the non-peaberry version if it’s still available.

    I recently got some Panamanian single lots, also from Blue Bottle, but have not tried them yet.

    Blue Bottle Cafe
    66 Mint St, San Francisco, CA 94103

    3 Replies
    1. re: Ridge
      scarmoza RE: Ridge May 26, 2011 05:25 PM

      Thanks for all these leads, Ridge! It eliminates all the guesswork on what to get next and will hopefully lead to many moments of happiness sipping great coffee. I noticed Novo currently has Amaro Gayo in. I'm so tempted to buy some immediately but I do want to try all the others you mentioned, too.

      So many great coffees, so little time! Can't wait to hear what Blue Bottle has to offer from Panama.

      Blue Bottle Cafe
      66 Mint St, San Francisco, CA 94103

      1. re: Ridge
        SteveG RE: Ridge May 31, 2011 12:17 PM

        Interesting comments on the Blue Bottle peaberry Sulawesi Toarco. I should keep a diary, but if my memory is right I was similarly turned off by the peaberry and just didn't like that coffee in either berry size in the end. I've been really enjoying Sightglass lately, getting much clearer berry flavors and complex, balanced cups than my old stand-by Blue Bottle, though I couldn't tell you off the top of my head what's in my grinder hopper this week. I'd been a Blue Bottle devotee for years, and live 1 block from one of their kiosk/cafes, but for the moment I'm a Sightglass guy.

        Blue Bottle Cafe
        66 Mint St, San Francisco, CA 94103

        1. re: SteveG
          isewinsf RE: SteveG Jun 12, 2011 06:42 PM

          Tell me if this is worth getting; this isn't far from my work. I would be willing to get some if it's worth it. Thanks!

      2. wolfe RE: scarmoza May 26, 2011 05:39 PM

        Moschetti, Vallejo

        7 Replies
        1. re: wolfe
          Ridge RE: wolfe May 26, 2011 09:46 PM

          Scarmoza: I really like Novo coffee (except a couple of times they have called me at 5:00 AM to inquire about shipping). I noticed they have a new Ethiopian (Anyetsu) that I have never tried and have been curious to try it.

          Wolf: I live in Vallejo and someone told me about this place not too long ago. They highly recommended it. I think I got their Red Sea blend a while ago from a place in Benecia and liked it. I have been meaning to visit their facility in Vallejo.

          1. re: Ridge
            wolfe RE: Ridge May 27, 2011 06:47 AM

            Very nice people but funny setup, at least on my visit, due to Vallejo's fiscal situation. Don't be put off. We really liked the Sumatra.

            1. re: wolfe
              Ridge RE: wolfe Jun 3, 2011 09:25 PM

              In the past few weeks I have tried three different new beans from Blue Bottle. A Brazilian (I forget the name and have already thrown out the empty bag) and Panama Sertara Peaberry and Sertara lot3. I made them as espresso. All three coffees were low acid and cocoa like. I love coffees that remind me of hot chocolate and all three of these have that quality. If I had to rank them my favorite was the Sertara peaberry, which had more body and complexity, followed by the Sertara lot 3 followed by the Brazilian. I highly recommend the Sertara peaberry and will definitely be buying this one again.

              Caruso Pizza
              685 Main St, Melrose, MA 02176

            2. re: Ridge
              josquared RE: Ridge Jun 11, 2011 06:21 PM

              I went over to Moschetti's today for the Saturday sampling, not only to sample the coffees but to pick myself up a pound or so for my moka pot. These free samplings to the public take place every Saturday from 9 AM - 1 PM

              Like wolfe mentioned, it is a little bit of an odd setup, but I think its more due to the setup of the building itself and its location (the street it's located on looks more like an extended driveway than an actual street, and the property is near a five-way intersection bordered with train tracks.) They have patio-style seating outside and additional seats in the main building, but quite a few people were milling about inside the warehouse building and/or chatting with others.

              Inside the main warehouse/coffee prep area they have a couple main rows of dispensers with labeled with the various coffees they offer. I first tried a Kona Blend (not my typical coffee, but my GF's father has a thing for it - it was a nice smooth start to the tasting.) I then went to two separate dispensers with what were the featured coffees of the day (Bali and a Costa Rican, with the latter being quite fruity and the former having something of an earthy tang to it - I really liked them both a lot.)

              They have an espresso machine in the area as well. The owner Fabrice is really nice and will pull a cappuccino or latte for you if you ask (some folks who knew what they were doing were pulling drinks for themselves) and he'll talk about his coffee knowledge eagerly if you ask.

              Quite a few regulars to these events stopped by to say hi and sample the wares, and overall the atmosphere was quite casual and friendly. As far as food, they had a basket of donuts as well as some goodies from Bijan Bakery in San Jose. There was also a corner set aside with jars of honey for sale from the Bay Area Bee Company (which has been at at least one of the ForageSF night markets, according to their FB page)

              They have coffee for sale outside within a shipping container, which they'll grind and then vacuum pack back for you if that's what you want. I picked up a pound of their dark espresso ($9.50) and sampled some in my moka pot later - that's been one of the more flavorful brews I've had with the pot in quite awhile.

              If you're in town, headed up to the Napa Valley for the day, or maybe headed on the ferry to SF on a Saturday, you could do a lot worse than stop by and sample some of their wares.

              1. re: josquared
                wolfe RE: josquared Jun 11, 2011 08:03 PM

                When I visited the production line and roasters were in a container and the warehouse was unfinished due, I was told, to Vallejo's inability to provide building inspection. Glad to see progress.

                1. re: wolfe
                  josquared RE: wolfe Jun 11, 2011 08:36 PM

                  Ahh, okay...thanks for clarifying that. That is progress indeed. It is a bit of an interesting setup still, and it took me a bit to figure out what was what.

                  And I guess I'm not surprised by the City of Vallejo's inability to do building inspection or performing other city-government-related functions in a timely manner these days (sad to say)

                  1. re: josquared
                    wolfe RE: josquared Jun 12, 2011 03:58 AM

                    I think I drove by the house and driveway 5 or 6 times yelling at my GPS "you ignorant piece of machine" until I finally I finally figured out what was 6th Street and what was a driveway. They gave me a lagniappe for my perseverance.

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