This morning we’re back with one of my favorite roasters and shops in St. Louis, Missouri, Blueprint Coffee. Blueprint is this month’s featured roaster in the Barista Coffee Box and this time I’m checking out their single origin Colombian. Slurp!
BARISTA COFFEE BOX JULY 2017: BLUEPRINT COFFEE COLOMBIA TAMANA
Every month, Barista Coffee Box sends out four (or sometimes more when the roaster is feeling super generous!) sample packs of coffee from the same roaster. It’s a great way to try several coffees and get a really good idea of how the roaster approaches coffee and get a taste of more than one coffee. July 2017 features one of my favorite coffee roasters and shops from St. Louis, Blueprint Coffee. Opened in 2013, Blueprint have made a great reputation for themselves in St. Louis and beyond!
This morning’s selection from the Barista Coffee Box is Blueprint’s Tamana, a single origin coffee from Colombia. This selection comes from Finca Tamana, owned by Elias Roa. Finca Tamana sits right next door to the coffee farm that Tim Wendelboe purchased a few years ago, Finca El Suelo. Tim has done a lot of work with Elias, especially in the art and science of composting (you should be following Wendelboe on YouTube). The video below shows the farm as well as Tim and Elias making compost. It’s cooler than it sounds!
This selection from Finca Tamana is Caturra and Colombia varieties that are grown in the 1650-1750masl range on the farm near El Pital in the Huila department (like a state here in the USA). It’s a washed coffee, as you’d expect from Colombia. The Blueprint gang give us tasting notes of, “cinnamon, pastry dough, orange zest, graham, currant” for this selection, which sounds pretty wild! I used my standard pourover setup for this coffee of a 1:16 ratio of 28g of coffee to 450g of water in a notNeutral Gino dripper. Handground grinder set to 3 and I used a home-brewed version of Third Wave Water made to TWW’s published specs because I wanted to see how big of a PITA it is to make myself as opposed to just buying the stuff!
I find this to be a rather light version of the Colombian coffees I have come to love so dearly over the past several years. It has a light body and the first thing to hit my palate is sweetness, with acidity coming in during the second half of the sip. This coffee also has a substantially tea-like mouthfeel, like green tea, causing some dryness on my tongue (technically, this is astringency and not desirable, but this never bothers me in coffee, so it’s not a “defect” that I really care about, unless it’s extreme). The sweetness in the cup is somewhat reminiscent of baked goods like graham crackers, pie dough, those sorts of things. There is a hint of baking spices in the aftertaste of this coffee, which lingers longer than I would expect given its light body and presence on my palate. The acidity in the cup reminds me of blood orange. It’s definitely orangey and not lemon, lime, grapefruit or other citrus fruits. I’m not sure why I was inspired to call it blood orange because it has been years since I’ve eaten one, but that was the first fruit that popped into my head. It seems a little “deeper” and more intense than a standard orange. As the cup cools the acidity picks up a little more lemon character, but it’s still a light acidity that is well-balanced by the sweetness in the cup and is not an in-your-face, bracing type of acidity.
Those are the main things I’m picking up in this coffee… a nice sweet baked goods sweetness with a wash of orange acidity in the second half of the sip and some baking spices in the finish, all wrapped up in a very tea-like mouthfeel. I’m really struck by just how light bodied this coffee is. It’s borderline watery for my tastes, and if this was a washed Ethiopian coffee I wouldn’t think of it as that unusual, but compared to the scores of Colombian coffees I’ve had since I started KCcoffeegeek.com, this seems like an outlier, to me. There’s absolutely nothing I find bad or unlikable about this coffee, but it is a little light in mouthfeel and body compared to my personal preference, that’s all. Especially with Colombian coffees, I prefer something weightier that sits on the palate more aggressive, but it is cool to experience a range of coffees, too. The flavors are wonderful in this cup, I’m just having trouble fully embracing the lightness of the body and mouthfeel, but this is a nice cup nonetheless!