If the photo looks familiar to you, you've probably fired up your popcorn air popper to roast some heavenly beans at home. I ran into a little something online this morning that may be of interest to folks who roast their own at home and aren't afraid to experiment a little.
I was kicking around looking for a description of the typical flavor profile of a particular coffee when I ran into this:
Now, I don't know about you, but I really appreciate that kind of honesty from a merchant. It makes me feel like I can really trust them when they tell me that a particular offering is spectacular. It gets even better, though. The merchant -- who exclusively sells green beans for home roasting and home coffee roasting equipment -- goes on to share his impressions of the coffee and recommendations for roasting it: you probably won't like it as a single origin, he says, especially if you drink your coffee black. It's not bad with cream and sugar, and even better with syrups. And if you blend, it makes a nice filler for sweet, full-bodied coffees as long as you keep it to less than 50% of the blend.
Here's the thing. The site is offering this coffee at below cost -- $2.65/lb -- not, the owner explains, to get rid of it but because he thinks it will make an interesting benchmark for the region -- Democratic Republic of the Congo, for those keeping score at home. He believes that the region has the potential to produce high quality coffee, but isn't there yet for a variety of reasons, many of them political. And he's intending to try again in a few years to see how it's developed. He also says he'd love impressions of the coffee from those who buy it. He goes on to note:
I'm a coffee politics wonk. This kind of stuff is irresistible to me. When I get paid this afternoon, I'll be ordering a couple of pounds to play with, and I'll be sure to post about the results when I roast them up. If you roast your own and are interested in giving this coffee a try, leave me a comment or drop me a PM here and I'll share the link to the site where you can order it. At that price, I figure it's more than worth it to give it a try and check back in a few years to see what's happened.