Coffee Roundup Summer 2022

Coffee Roundup Summer 2022Coffee Roundup Fall 2021

We haven’t been keeping up with our coffee reviews over the last year and a half so here we go with more blog posts on our coffee consumption habits.

The Summer of 2022 was a great one for us drinking coffee and trying some new brewing methods like the Chemex. 

Old favourites like the French press and stovetop espresso maker by Bialetti were also used and when buying beans and grinding at home as always, we used the methods mentioned above to brew.

We also went to Roaster Central at the Espressotec to get several new coffees using their sample cards. 

Empress Espresso. East Van Roasters

This was a great coffee from a local Vancouver company. We tried it in our three different brew methods. 

The biggest thing we didn’t realize was how involved East Van Roasters (EVR) is involved in the chocolate-making business so much so that it took a visit to their website to learn more about this. They are a chocolate company first. 

Who doesn’t like chocolate and coffee together as a pairing I must admit I find myself looking for coffees with chocolate-like aftertaste or flavours that linger on the tongue. 

EVR’s company mission is “committed to making a difference and as their website describes East Van Roasters (319 Carrall Street in the Rainier Hotel) is a 16-seat specialty cafe and social enterprise of the PHS Community Services Society. EVR is committed to encouraging women that are re-entering the workforce through mentorship based programming and on-the-job training. The organization supports at-risk people in a compassionate and supportive environment filled with meaningful work and nourishing food.”

Their mission is truly inspiring!

The coffee itself is a medium espresso roast with chocolate orange peel and pecan notes. I get the chocolate. The pecan and orange peel are tougher to find.

Strait Coffee Organic Guatemala

My normal choice for coffee from Strait Coffee is their Skookum blend but I felt was important to branch out a bit and try some of their other blends.

I’ve blogged before about how this company is the best spot on the Sunshine Coast for coffee and how in addition to coffee has some great food to try as well.

Tasting Notes: Chocolate, raisin, green apple. One of our most popular coffees, Guatemalan is roasted on the dark side of medium, with warm caramel and chocolate notes

The flavour notes validate once again my love for chocolate in the coffees I buy. This coffee pairs well with food like cinnamon buns.

Caffe Monte’s Origin Tarrazu 

This was another coffee I found at Espressotec’s Roaster Central that I took on vacation to Hornby Island and brewed in a Aeropress Coffee maker.

I was attracted to this coffee because I visited two coffee plantations when I went to Costa Rica in 2006 but never made it to this region of the country.

According to the company’s website, “Tarrazu itself is the fifth canton in the province of San Jose in Costa Rica. Tarrazu is in a pristine and misty mountain range with coffee farms ranging in elevation from 1400-1900 meters. The canton of Tarrazu is widely respected for producing some of the most exquisite coffee beans within Costa Rica due to the soil composition of volcanic loam and micro-climate with two distinctive seasons of rainy and dry.

Of note on this coffee is how it is processed. A little research from a book I bought called The Coffee Dictionary explains the Washed process in detail.

Origin Tarrazu when processed uses less than a tenth of the water than standard washing processes do. That makes it another great reason to buy this coffee.

Lix Espresso

This coffee comes from the Hornby Island Coffee Company and is named for and used at their Lix Ice Cream Bar on Hornby Island.

With my regular summer visit to Hornby Island, it’s a natural stop for me here and with a little internet search post-visit, I wasn’t able to find a website that lists their coffees. 

They do have a Facebook page and Instagram account

One thing that stands out about this coffee is the bags using the cool tied die format for all their offerings. The coffees are also named after places on Hornby Island, a magical place to visit. I’ve been taking summer vacations there for over 15 years. 

Gold Coast Blend

Look I get it, there is a snob factor when drinking coffee from a giant company like Starbucks. These days people want to be socially conscious about the food they consume including that they know where it comes from, how it is grown and the people who grow it are given a fair deal. 

Starbucks itself has an extensive section of its website dedicated to sustainability and corporate social responsibility.

As a former Starbucks employee, I regularly got this coffee for free as part of the company’s free pound-a-week program. It was worth it and I consumed it regularly. One thing that’s very disappointing about Starbucks now is that their cafes have two mild roast coffees and a generic dark on tap called Signature Dark Roast. 

The cafe used to have a rotating coffee program that was ground fresh daily when I worked there. That’s not to say what was done then was better but store sales and numbers proved that people were seeking out and drinking dark roast coffees that were on daily and even weekly for variety. 

Gold Coast Coffee itself was created by Starbucks as a blend when it moved into the Chicago market in 1987. Starbucks uses beans from the Asia/Pacific region with coffees from Latin America, plus its Italian Roast. The flavour has hints of baking chocolate, dried fruit and caramel.

I love this coffee in the French press I own and it was the first way I tried it while working at Starbucks. Truly a delicious cup of coffee this way.

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