Jolly Roasters Coffee Co. Guatemala Atitlan

posted in: 2017, reviews | 0

This morning finds me with a new coffee from a new-to-me roaster! This morning I’m sharing a Guatemalan coffee courtesy of Virginia Beach’s Jolly Roasters Coffee Co. Without further ado, let’s check this out!

Jolly Roasters Coffee Co. 

Current Offerings

Coastal Virginia Magazine article


Jolly Roasters Coffee Co. was founded by Casey and Brenda Jolly in 2015. While stationed outside of Tokyo in 2011, they discovered pourover coffee and the Japanese specialty coffee culture (not a bad introduction into high quality coffee!). Like many of us, Casey and Brenda started home roasting on an air popper and people loved the results. They returned to Virginia Beach, Virginia around 2014 and, in 2015, had a business plan and started their commercial venture. It looks like Jolly Roasters stay busy with some contract roasting and wholesale accounts, online and local sales, pop-ups, farmers markets, tasting events, etc and it’s great to see another couple doing well with their small business dreams!

They sent me a few coffees and I started with their Guatemala from Atitlan. Unfortunately, this coffee is either sold out or out of the current rotation, so I couldn’t find a page to reference my research from. I did link to Jolly Roasters’ current offerings above. This is a washed coffee, for sure, and coffee grows above 1350masl in the Atitlan area, which is a large lake surrounded by three volcanic mountains. Bourbon, Caturra, Typica and Catuai all grow in that area and these coffees tend to have chocolatey/nutty or citrus-forward flavor profiles. Jolly Roasters gives us tasting notes of, “almond, honey, molasses, dark chocolate” and the roast level looked like a light roast, visually. As always, I used my standard pourover method of a 1:16 ratio of 28g of coffee to 450g of water in a notNeutral Gino dripper. Handground grinder was set to 3 and I use Third Wave Water for everything coffee-related.

My cup has a medium to medium-light body. My first sips are sweet and citrusy, but this coffee has nice balance and even though the citrus is very apparent, it’s soft and round and isn’t as aggressive as it could be. I’m getting sweet orange juice in the acidity, which is balanced nicely by almond and maybe cashew nuttiness. There is a light caramel note to the sweetness and this magnifies and lingers in the long aftertaste. I get a little bit of a mild dark chocolate with orange vibe from this coffee, which is really nice. The finish is dry and this is a super-balanced, easy drinking coffee, especially as the cup cools.

This is a great intro to Jolly Roasters’ coffee roasting! For me, Guatemalan coffees are either super sweet sugar bombs or bright and citrusy, and this one pulls elements from both and sort of rides the fence. It’s a delicious drinker and has enough complexity to hold my interest, but not so much that it makes it a chore to drink. Awesome!