Introducing Brandon’s Anniversary Blend

Chemex brew of Brandon's Anniversary BlendToday we had the pleasure of trying a new Stockton Graham & Co. blend in honor of Roastmaster, Brandon Riggs’ 10th Anniversary! Although Brandon had a strong desire for his Anniversary Blend to incorporate our Papua New Guinea, his favorite varietal right now, he was unable to find a truly-balanced good blend using the PNG. So instead, this “perfect” blend is equal parts Sumatra, Kenya AA and Guatemala, a favorite blend of Brandon’s over the years. A blend that “sticks with him”, Brandon always likes to serve this up to friends and new customers to try as an example of one of his best creations!

Larz Chemex brewing Brandon's Anniversary BlendLarz served me up a mug brewed using the Chemex brewing method, resulting in one of the smoothest cups I’ve ever tasted! I have to agree with Larz that the blend is delicious, incorporating bright, citrusy notes from the Kenya AA, followed by the chocolaty sweetness of the Sumatra. It has a pleasant, spicy, floral aroma and a smooth, medium body. It’s a great “anytime” coffee that an average coffee drinker will love, and true coffee aficianados will appreciate the nuances each specific varietal has to offer.

Brandon talking about Brandon's Anniversary Blend“I’ve never given this blend to anyone who didn’t like it,” said Brandon. “The blend is nicely balanced between the tangy acidity of the Kenya AA, grounded by the sweet chocolate notes of the Sumatra. The Guatemala blends the two opposites together perfectly.”

Thanks so much, Brandon, for 10 years of fantastic coffee!

New Lot: Sumatra Lintong Triple Picked

The nation of Indonesia is composed of thousands of islands which serve as a partition between the Pacific and Indian Oceans. For centuries, Indonesia functioned as the center for trade in Southeast Asia, and the influence of the nation on the trade industry allowed coffee to flourish in places as far away as Western Europe. This coffee varietal has been selected by Stockton Graham & Co. for its full body and chocolaty profile which is a product of the rich soils found on the plantations of the Lintong Highlands.

The Lintong region is located just southwest of the city of Medan, which serves as port for coffee farms in the area. This region is not only an important part of the coffee industry in Indonesia, but the region is also home to Lake Toba. This giant crater lake was formed over 75 thousand years ago due to the volcanic activity that closely resembles the history of Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming.

Sumatra Lintong includes the description “Triple Picked,” which refers to a specific sorting process used in this region. Many coffee plantations employ their own method of sorting, but some berries found in Sumatra can over-develop and display very negative flavors. To ensure that these beans are completely eliminated, workers will sort their beans three times before the beans are exported. This extra attention to detail obviously attracts a roaster and will always produce a higher grade of coffee.

At Stockton Graham & Co., this coffee varietal is roasted at a darker level in order to omit winey flavors in favor of milk chocolate notes and a heavy body. Sumatra Lintong is also incorporated into many espresso blends because of its full body and intricate flavor. This sweet and mildly acidic varietal is perfect for drip brewing and can also be appreciated when pressed.

 

“What Do You Taste?” Indonesia

During the last two weeks, we have covered the growing regions of Latin America and East Africa. We learned how the different environments along with the processing methods, affect the tastes of the coffees produced. In editions one and two of “What Do You Taste?”, it was determined that Latin American coffee beans tend to be very acidic regardless of the country, while East Africa on the other hand, tends to be much more diverse when it comes to taste. This week we are going to take a look at the third and final region, Indonesia. Coffee is not native to these islands, but because of their ideal climate and location, 17th century Dutch colonists traveled to this region and planted coffee seeds. Since then, coffee has become a huge industry on an international scale, and is one of the biggest economic resources in the region.

In this region, coffee comes primarily from Sulawesi, Sumatra, East Timor, Papua New Guinea and Java. Arabica coffee beans, which are of higher quality, only make up about 10 percent of the total coffee grown from this region. Even though this is the case, it is known that Arabica coffee beans that are grown in Indonesia are among some of the highest desired, producing high demands, especially in Japan and the United States. The thousands of islands that make up this region are the perfect environment for coffee growing. With tropical rainforests and a mountainous landscape, this region allows some of the finest coffee in the word to be grown. Most of the beans grown in Indonesia are dry processed, which gives the coffee a very low acidic content. Typically, the average Indonesian coffee has a heavy body with low acidity and a chocolaty taste.

At Stockton Graham & Co., we have some incredible selections from Sumatra and Sulawesi. These beans are heavily recommended by our roasting staff, and are quite favorable among our customers. Whether it’s a single origin, or a blended coffee, Indonesian coffee always seems to please it’s drinkers. If Indonesian coffee is one that you are unfamiliar with, we strongly suggest you try it, because we guarantee you won’t be disappointed!

Matt Hogan
Stockton Graham & Co.