drink coffee. be happy.

Archive : 2016-01

coffee seasons

the coffees that really pop, the coffees you want to be drinking on any given morning, are the coffees that are in season right then. even though we carry guatemala all year round, this is not its finest hour. ethiopians do not have that spark they had 6 months ago. on the other hand, today is a great day for a mug of papua new guinea, colombia, or bali blue moon.

here is an overly simplified list of when coffees arrive in the usa. a honduras or guatemala from central america will have arrived somewhere between april and july, and will be at its peak of flavor for up to another 6 months after arrival (hence, for any central american coffee, between january and april is the worst time to drink it).

central americans — arrive from april to july
most africans (uganda, burundi, tanzania, rwanda) — arrive from december to march. kenya has two crops a year.
ethiopia — arrive from may to august
indonesians — arrivals from october to february for the main crop, but sumatra has an extended season
arabians (india, yemen) — usually arrive between november to february
south america — arrive from november to february for the main crop
decaf — not predictable

roast dates

probably the most common question i get, is how long ago the customer’s coffee was roasted.
i have long insisted that scrawling a date on a label proves nothing. it tells you the packaging date at best, not the roast date. we go through coffee so quickly, that most origins are roasted at least once a day, so why waste time dating everything — it’s all fresh!!!
but we are now dating packages anyway. a sticker with that day’s date hardly takes any time and has enough benefits to make it worth doing:
1 — it will help wholesale accounts rotate their stock.
2 — it will help retail customers hit their sweet spot for extraction (some customers won’t touch the beans until they are three days old. some won’t touch the beans after they are 2 weeks old. either way, it’s one less thing they have to keep track of.)
3 — some evenings we get a head start on roasting for the next day’s orders, and roasting date stickers keeps us organized and honest.