Right now, if I wanted, I could watch a movie on my phone. If I wanted to own the new Coldplay CD, I could in a matter of minutes. If I wanted to see my dad, he’s only one Skype call away. The truth is, most everything is instant these days – or darn near. But is that necessarily the best way to go about everything? Are there benefits to slowing down? Kohana Coffee out of Austin, TX seems to think so.
When it comes to roasting, the majority of the world’s coffee is roasted at a high temperature for just a few minutes. The problem is, one roast does not fit all beans.
At Kohana, we recognize, even revere, the fact that each type of bean has its own flavor characteristics. Using a technique developed in Hawaii, each Kohana bean is slow roasted based on these characteristics.
That’s great, but does Kohana’s tendency to “go against the grind” of coffee society pay off? (See what I did there…?)
I first got in contact with the folks from Kohana on Twitter. We’d talk from time to time, tossing back and forth quips and coffee lingo. As time went on and I began doing more reviews for coffee shops outside of Boise, Kohana Coffee would often cross my mind as a brand that I would love to review. For some reason I never got around to it – until a few weeks ago.
The folks from Kohana Coffee were more than friendly, sending me a bag of their Antigua Belle Carmona – a medium roast. Here’s the description of the coffee I received, from Kohana’s website:
One of Guatemala’s premium Antiguan coffees from Hacienda Carmona, a small estate located between the Agua and Acatenango volcanoes. With a rich full body and bright medium acidity, it is mildly sweet with flavors of caramel and cacao. Nicely aromatic fruit fragrance and a clean finish make this a special coffee you will enjoy….
One difficult aspect to reviewing coffee is that there is not any objective way to tell someone what coffee is good and what coffee is bad. Often, I’ve found that certain coffees taste great in a mocha, while others are best when consumed as straight espresso. When I’m trying new coffee I like to put it into as many different types of drinks as I can. Not only does this give me an overall sense of the diversity of the coffee, but it allows me to find the way to enjoy that specific coffee the best.
After putting Kohana Coffee’s Antigua Bella Carmona through my “varied drink” test, I found that there was one cup that I simply couldn’t get enough of. Creating an Americano out of the Antigua and enjoying it with a little cream, as simple as that sounds, was absolutely heavenly. On one particular day I drank three cups of the Antigua this way. The more I had it, the more I loved it.
The coffee itself is a solid medium roast – definitely not one that will leave you wanting. Strong fruity notes reverberate throughout the entire process of crafting a cup of coffee from the Antigua, the strongest stage being grinding. Every time I would grind a batch the entire room would fill with the savory scent. These smells transfer nicely into the finished product, giving the coffee a lighthearted and carefree taste. Don’t be confused though, this is not a “light” coffee in the truest sense of the word. Strong notes ring through as well, giving the brew a rich undertone that will jar one to reality if consumed in the morning. It’s safe to say that the Antigua Bella Carmona is a versatile coffee. Its deliciousness can be enjoyed morning, noon, or night. I would strongly suggest Kohana’s Antigua Bella Carmona to both the coffee connoisseur and the casual consumer alike. Buy it here.
One other aspect of Kohana Coffee that’s well worth pointing out is their great website and social media outlets. Their website is more than just a store – it actually has a surprising wealth of information regarding their coffee, and coffee in general. For instance, check out their brewing tips here. Check them out on Facebook and Twitter as well.
I can’t wait to try more coffee from Kohana Coffee! If slow roasting is wrong, I don’t want to be right.
The Coffee Guy