I really love Holler Roast Coffee, well, come on guys I really love coffee period. I started talking to Nicole a few months ago about developing something truly special though. First I wanted a blonde roast. Yea everyone wants a deep black roast, but with the right beans a subtle blonde roast lets you actually taste the character of the beans. To find the coffee’s sense of place, known as the terroir.
That led us to the next challenge, what place to capture the sense of? Using her knowledge Nicole tracked down 6 candidates for this signature blend. Some of the worthy candidates came from Tanzania, Bali and Rawanda, they were all good but in the end Sumatra won the day. It didn’t surprise me that Sumatran beans won the day.
Coffees in Sumatra are traditionally processed using a method called Giling Basah, or wet-hulling, which results in a coffee that leaves the farm with a much higher moisture content than other methods used more popularly worldwide. This allows the coffee to develop unique herbaceous characteristics you just don’t get in other coffees. Typically Sumatran beans are roasted to a very dark level, in an attempt to enhance these flavors. But going with a blonde roast brings out spicy notes, essences of cinnamon. Additionally the unique natural sweetness remains along with subtle earthy tones.
Okay I admit it, I know way more about coffee than I should!
Sumatran coffees also tend to have naturally low acidity compared to other beans, this allows those earthy and herbaceous tones to really shine. You also get some sweet cedar tones and with a light roast a light coco and black cherry back finish.
So now we had the perfect bean, the perfect roast, something truly unique but we were not yet done. We wanted to take my signature roast over the top, to make it something you just could not get anywhere else other than Holler Roast. So we went to bourbon, yea good old bourbon. Now hold the phone folks, this isn’t bourbon flavored coffee, though some of that character does come though. It is bourbon cooled.
You see some time ago Nicole sent me a bag of her classic Holler Roast with one thing different, the beans were “vodka cooled”. It was a pretty amazing difference. The speed at which coffee beans cool impacts the sweet notes in the drinking experience, with a faster cooling cycle resulting in more natural notes of caramel and vanilla. Some street roasters in Vietnam use vodka as part of their roasting cycle.
So when I realized how awesome this process was I sent an email to Nicole with subject line, “6 Words” and the body of the email simply said, “Blonde Roast Bourbon Cooled – Jack’s Blend”. That is where this whole thing started! Yea we reverse engineered it. What was the perfect bean to roast medium and cool with bourbon, try this stuff and I think you will find we nailed it.
This coffee is going to be the coffee you spoil yourself and very lucky friends with. The process is complicated, it has to be done just right to make it work and give you all it promises. So it is expensive but it is also worth it. And right now Nicole only has 100 pounds available, so it is sure to sell out fast with Christmas coming up. To get yours before it is gone, check out Jack’s Blonde Bourbon Cooled Sumatran at Holler Roast right away.