I made it to Good Coffee in Portland, OR on a recent unrelated business trip and had a great shot of Madcap Lake Effect espresso (thanks to my barista there, that day!) and bought a bag of Roseline’s Finca Llana Redondo. I knew very little about Roseline when I bought their coffee, but I have been having nice luck with Colombian coffees and if multiroaster coffee shops like Good Coffee and The Arbor Lodge serve their coffee then Roseline has to be good! I had a couple beers with another talented roaster before I left town and he told me, “Marty is the best roaster in Portland” so that validated my purchase as far as I was concerned!
Roseline got its start as a specialty coffee boutique roaster in 2012 and if you’re interested in the story behind the company you can find more information in this article on Sprudge. You can still get this coffee directly from Roseline for $17/bag. I feel like I paid $18 for the bag at Good Coffee, but what’s a dollar among friends?
This coffee comes to us from via Roseline from Alfredo Lopez’s Finca Llana Redondo farm, high in the mountains of Colombia. This is a washed coffee grown at a very high altitude caturra varietal grown at 2,000 masl (meters above sea level). High altitude is good for coffee because the plants mature more slowly, collecting more sugar as they develop. High altitude also yields a very dense coffee seed (“bean”) and these pose potential roasting problems in the evenness and development of the roast. There are more stats and some info from Roseline’s site at the end of my review, too.
I drank this coffee both as AeroPress and in my trusty notNeutral Gino (basically a Kalita Wave) dripper. It wasn’t bad as AeroPress, but the AeroPress tends to pull a lot more acidity out of coffees, for my palate, and this coffee was all about the sugars for me, so I felt like the Gino highlighted that better. The beans and grounds had a very inviting brown sugar and molasses aroma that carried through into the flavor, too.
This coffee has a lot of depth and is really easy to drink. There is nice roasty bitterness on the front end that is quickly balanced by those full, round sugars I mentioned. This coffee is sweet, but not cloying, and is really delicious. I found it deep and rich and with a full mouthfeel.
As the cup cooled the acidity developed some and it struck me as having some citrus notes… something between an orange and a grapefruit… There were elements of grapefruit pith but sweeter. That being said, the acidity takes a definite backseat to the sweetness and sugar profile of this coffee.
In the AeroPress the acidity was definitely more upfront, but I felt like the body was thin and just nothing nearly as pleasurable to drink as the pourover was.
I really liked this coffee, I loved the sweetness and I think it was expertly roasted with good development. If you look at the stats and notes from Roseline’s website below you’ll see that they found a lot more of the fruit and acidity in their cups than I did mine, but that could also be the difference between drinking this coffee and slurping it with cupping spoons, so you’ll see (and experience!) different things depending on how you drink your coffee!
Regardless, this is a damn fine cup of coffee and if you’re looking for something complex and deep to drink, this is a good option!
From the Roseline Website:
Aromatics: purple berries, pistachio gelato
Flavors: grape soda, sugar cane syrup
Origin: Buesaco, Narino, Colombia
Producer: Alfredo Lopez
Altitude: 2000 masl
Processing: fully washed, sun-dried on clay patio
Located near the town of Buesaco, Narino, Colombia lies Finca Llano Redondo. This jammy coffee has a delightful huckleberry note that stands out. Once again, traditional practices of washing and drying are at work to compliment the complex fruit notes buried in the dense structure of the bean. A true gem, continuing a relationship of stellar coffees from the Buesaco area.