2013 Coffee Round Up
Here at Flat Black, we love coffee. We like drinking it; we like talking about it. This year has seen the
return of many old favorites, as well as some new comers. And so without any more ado, we offer:
FLAT BLACK COFFEE’s 2013 AWARDS
(Disclaimer: The following awards should be considered completely random, unobjective, and non-
official, based on the opinions of our Franklin St. café’s customers and staff.)
Biggest Eye Opener Award
We have all heard people say some variant of “all coffee tastes like coffee to me.” A great tool to
disabuse someone of this notion is our Queen City Ethiopian Harrar DP. With unmistakable notes of
berry and chocolate, no one can taste it and say same “ol’ same ol’”. I remember giving some to my wife
(who uses hazelnut flavored creamer in her coffee, but still has a pretty good palate) without telling her
what it was. She asked, “Did you put blueberry syrup in this?”
Sumatra Wahana Natural Process. With big syrupy body and notes of strawberry and
melon, this is one crazy fruit bomb. And, Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Kochere. Those who love it cannot get
enough of it, the rest do not have a clue what to make of its raspberry, black tea and lime notes. (It is an
awesome, awesome coffee.)
The New Kid on the Block Award
Every once in a while a coffee comes along that breaks the mold. Always a favorite with everyone
is our Panama Boquete Classico, with its sweet caramel and citrus notes. When a different coffee from
Boquete showed up this year, we all expected a similar profile. But with a fuller body, dark molasses
sweetness, and just a touch of lime acidity, Panama Indian Baru, surprised us all and quickly became a
favorite “Milder” option in our line-up and flew off the shelves.
Runner-up: Kenya PB (Mukurwe washing station). With pink grapefruit acidity and black tea notes,
this one sold like we knew it would—it is a Kenyan, after all.
The Bomb Diggity Dark Roast Award
Our most commented upon dark roast is Bali Blue Moon with its awesome, full-bodied,
bittersweet, black licorice, pepper goodness.
Runner-up: Timor Maubese Italian Roast. Our only current Italian Roast (one step darker than
French Roast) offering, this one is a perennial favorite.
The Can’t Keep it On the Shelf Award
Boy, were we pumped when we found out we had a new micro-lot from Costa Rica, Costa Rica
Naranjo Finca Sabanilla (honey process). It was worth getting excited about—sweet orange, mild
cherry, full body. Our customers thought so too. We can’t keep it on the shelf for more than a few days
before we are begging our roaster for more.
Runners-up: Panama Indian Baru and Ethiopian Harrar and Indian Monsooned Malabar.
The Competitor Award
Our company has always encouraged our baristas to consider competing in regional contests, and
this year was no different. What was different is that one coffee was used in competition 3 times—and
brought home 3rd place in America’s Best Espresso (East coast) competition. That coffee is our Yemen
Mocca Sanani. It was a bold choice for competition, being the only Yemen featured in the Best Espresso
competition and the only single origin Yemeni coffee in Eastern Regionals and Nationals. As espresso,
the Yemen is a chocolate bomb with grapefruit, fig and clove notes. It interacts with milk beautifully and
is killer in a French Press.
Silly awards aside, it is all good. It’s all good.