• First Batch of Blended Beans

    So last week I roasted a batch of beans that were specifically blended for espresso.  I may reveal my ignorance of wine here, but I imagine that this is similar to what the french do for, say, a rhone blend.  Select percentages of different grapes to impart different aspects to achieve a final flavor profile that is greater than the sum of the ingredients.  Blends serve a second purpose in coffee; as different beans move out of season or become unavailable, marketing a blend lets you choose a substitute bean with a similar flavor.  The labeling doesn't change, but the blend can allow for available substitute beans.  This means a roaster can offer a named blend year round, even though the sources for the ingredients might shift throughout the year.  

    Then again, some producers use the term "blend" loosely, where it more closely describes the wastebin - a collection of unremarkable leftovers, all tossed in the hopper to save money.  Yuck.  

    So it is important to know and trust who is making your blend.

    The response was quite positive.  This photo is from a barista and artist who was demoing the coffee (photo by Joel).  I like americanos and cappuccinos, but rarely buy them and don't own any espresso equipment at home.  So I was very fortunate to have some people around who could run it through the paces.  The flavor was quite nice, bright fruit and spice.  It stood up well in milk in my cappuccino and made a fantastic americano.  My man James at TwentySIx Cafe pulled some shots for a friend and I on Friday, and they were delicious.  I'm not sure about the future of blends for Tristero.  On the one hand, when people hear "espresso blend," they often associate ideas of "darker" or "stronger" or "higher caffeine" or "more intense."  This wasn't any of those things, as blending has to do with the flavor at the end, not with the roast or potency. Many people also assume that espresso blends are best brewed as espresso and will avoid them as a "hassle" to prepare.  On the other hand, being able to have a consistent flavor profile year round and a signature coffee is quite appealing.  I like the capriciousness and whimsy of following whatever is available on the market at the time, keeping stock fresh and always surprising.  If I roast a blend again, I'll throw some up here for sale.  And I'd love to hear from customers.  If you're making and drinking coffee at home, would having a stable blend be appealing?

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