Reviews for Thanksgiving Coffee
Delicately bright, exhilarating. Candied lemon, vanilla, pear, baker’s chocolate in aroma and cup. Gentle, lively acidity; light, satiny mouthfeel. Lemon and crisp chocolate carry into a sweet, lightly flavor-saturated finish.
Richly fruity and cidery. Baker’s chocolate, apple cider, wisteria-like flowers, a brightening hint of grapefruit in aroma and cup. Resonant, roundly tart acidity; lightly syrupy mouthfeel.
Richly cocoa-toned, crisp and balanced. Cocoaish dark chocolate, blood orange, fig, musky lily in aroma and cup. Crisp, gentle acidity; light, silky mouthfeel. The cocoa-like chocolate rings on in a quietly resonant finish.
Immaculately sweet; lyrical. Peach, honey, lavender and honeysuckle, fresh-cut cedar in aroma and cup. Sweet, high-toned acidity; lightly syrupy mouthfeel. Peach, honey and flowers carry into a crisply sweet finish.
Price: $16.50/12 ounces
Sweet-toned, gentle, juicy. Pineapple, sweet chocolate, rum, minty flowers, fresh-cut cedar in aroma and cup. Round, richly lively acidity; full, very syrupy mouthfeel. Flavor consolidates in a finish that balances continuing sweetness with a crisp drying edge.
Deep, intense but balanced. Peach, sweet chocolate, plum blossom, ripe orange in aroma and cup. Delicate, lyrically lively acidity; silky mouthfeel. Peach and chocolate in particular carry into a resonantly flavor-saturated finish.
Round, sweet, gently pungent. Fresh-cut fir, chocolate, a hint of enlivening tart berry in aroma and cup. Round, rather muted acidity; light but syrupy mouthfeel. Sweet-toned, gently drying finish.
Delicately sweet aroma highlighted by a complex range of fruit: ripe berry, spicy citrus, with a backgrounded nut and fir. Gently tart acidity, medium body, silky mouthfeel. In the cup flavor smoothes and rounds, with the nut and fir moving forward and the fruit softening toward chocolate. Flavor persists in the short finish but fades toward a mild astringency in the long.
Pungently rich aroma, with dark chocolate and spicy cedar notes. In the cup round, roast-muted acidity, smooth mouthfeel, continued cocoaish chocolate and cedar notes with a hint of raisiny fruit. Long, flavor-saturated finish.
Rich aroma complicated by smoky semi-sweet chocolate and caramel. The cup is simple but satisfying: very sweet, deep, roundly roasty. The real glory of this coffee is an extraordinarily long, lushly vibrant, deeply chocolaty finish.
A rich and vividly fermented fruit dominates. The cherry-toned ferment is overlaid by a cedary roastiness in the aroma. In the cup the ferment deepens toward a dark chocolate and brandied cherry, but also displays a distracting pine or rosemary pungency. Smoothes out toward a cleanly rich chocolate in the short finish, though slightly astringent in the long.
Ken and co-taster Ted Lingle ended with comparable overall ratings (Ken 85, Ted 86) but differed in how they got there. Ted found the aroma a bit flat; Ken found it delicate, with toast, apple and floral notes. Ted found the body fuller and the mouthfeel more substantial than Ken did. Both found the flavor in the small cup toasty/smoky and a bit sharp in the finish. Both admired the way the blend rounded and sweetened in milk. Nominating reader Robert Bobbs praised this blend as "perfectly balanced ... big body, slightly sweet, not too much acidity but enough to enliven the cup; holds up well in big milky drinks but is fantastic as a straight shot."
A superb, versatile blend. The aroma is deep with chocolate and tropical fruit tones (banana?), the mouthfeel buttery and the body full, the small cup sweetly cedar toned with a lush, very slightly fermented fruit that reads as a rich raisin- and floral-toned chocolate. The finish is resonant and long with a low-key, pleasantly bracing astringency. In milk the shot rounds and sweetens without losing identity or authority.
Low-toned fruit (peach?), semi-sweet chocolate and fresh-cut cedar notes in the aroma. The cup is delicate but lush, enlivened by a softly tart acidity and complicated by continued fruit (cherry, peach) and semi-sweet chocolate notes. The finish is simple but sweetly clean.
Although co-cupper Christy Thorns (87) felt the Ethiopia citrus and floral notes turned "somewhat passive" under the impact of the roast, she praised the "complex aromatics of ginger, clove and toasted grain" and a spicy finish. Ken also found spice notes also in the aroma (black pepper, clove), but particularly admired the cup for its round mouthfeel and "juicy and sweet but vegetal" character, "a bit like biting into a ripe plum and tasting the skin and the flesh at the same time." What we can take away from all of this is a coffee with less floral and citrus character than a classic wet-processed Ethiopia, but with more spice and tingle.
Complexly fruity and richly floral coffee - papaya, lemon, coffee fruit, hints of dusk-blooming flowers and chocolate, all ride a strong, balanced structure: good body, smooth mouthfeel, supple, sweet acidity.
Extraordinary, luxurious coffee, lushly sweet yet vibrantly acidy, with ripe, opulent fruit tones and delicately intense floral high notes. Utterly free of bitterness or astringency. Perfectly roasted, and as extravagantly complex as the very finest East Africa coffees. Nominator David Lubertozzi of Berkeley raves about its "amazing body and milk-chocolateyness," and confesses he enjoys it even better cold than hot -- always a sign of an exceptional coffee.
Rich, round and balanced, with a sweetly understated acidity. Not a lot of nuance, but a hint of mustiness reads as an agreeably peppery chocolate. The finish is smooth, clean and long.