We are fortunate to have access to amazing single farm coffees that make wonderful cups of coffee. These coffees really highlight everything that goes into the cup from the seed selection, growing conditions, micro-climate, to the processing types. Each coffee has its own flavour profile, and this profile reveals itself in any brew method, which makes playing around with all the methods a lot of fun.
Roasters blend for many reasons. We are looking for a flavour profile that gives a balance between a structural base of heavy tones, a mid-level of acidity and sweetness, and floral-fruity notes to give it a bit of interest. There is no single coffee that can tick all these boxes and so we created the Monmouth Espresso. For the Organic Espresso that came later we wanted to showcase a different kind of flavour profile that has more floral and fruit notes with a more caramelised base.
In the Monmouth Espresso we use pulped-natural, yellow bourbon coffees from Brazil that work as the base of the blend. From there, we add traditional-washed varietals from Guatemala for the mid-level, and traditional-washed varietals from Colombia to provide the top notes. For the Organic Espresso, we use a traditional-washed Ethiopian coffee that gives all the fruit and floral notes one could wish for, and supplement this with a rotation of coffees from Costa Rica and Peru.
We roast both blends up to a medium-dark profile specifically for our espresso. Espresso is an exaggeration of flavour, and while any coffee can be made in any brew method, we are primarily looking for sweetness and to achieve this we take the development of the roast a bit further. We could roast a bit lighter to show more of the acidity, or a bit darker to have more bitterness from the roasting process, but really, we are looking for something that is just right, for us. We feel this brings out the best of the coffees and allows them to work together to create the blend profile.
In the next month or so, the new crop coffees will arrive from Brazil. Of these coffees many will go into the Monmouth Espresso. We expect different lots from around seven farms to be in the blend this year. At the end of this year, we will see the coffees from Nariño (Colombia) replace those from Huila, in the Monmouth Espresso. This happens around the same time that the corresponding single origin change happens on our counter. The coffees from Guatemala (usually four farms) follow each other along the year until the new crop arrives, and then the rotation starts again. You’ll find the names of all the coffees currently in the blends on the website and the coffee list in our shops, along with details of the coffees currently in the Organic Espresso.
Keep a look out for the farm changes, and if you have an espresso machine at home, play around making up your own blend. It is a lot of fun! And you might hit upon something that really tickles your tastebuds!