I received these two coffees from Lee Jong Hoon (Korean Barista Champion ’09) and his girlfriend and partner Seol Mi Gyeong, who run Republic of Coffee together. Two great people and very dedicated coffee professionals that I feel privileged to have met!

The Kenya AA Top Mchana is complex and fruity. Dry red wine is the dominant flavor I picked up, followed by a mix of fruit notes that show themselves more clearly as the cup cools: tart grapes and berries, and notes reminiscent of slightly salty, tangy dried fruit.

The Flor del Cafe 2009 Costa Rica Cup of Excellence (COE) #15 was my favorite of the two. Straight off the brew, it hits you with a strong tea-like spice and sweetness. As it becomes cooler, a subtle roasty caramel sweetness and green apple-like tartness emerges and then becomes lighter, a flavor I can’t describe, but perhaps the melon descriptor on the bag is apt. The aftertaste is like black tea and spices. It really impresses as it changes temperatures! I made a cup right before teaching a class and kept sipping and making mental notes of how the flavor changed :)

I brewed these coffees on a Hario V60 using a variety of ratios and grinds, but generally around 18-20g coffee to 250ml water with a grind a bit finer than what works on a Melitta pour-over.

I also used an Aeropress and the upside-down steeping method (~2min steep, a little stir, then flip it and do a 30 sec press. 16-18g coffee with a grind similar to what works for V60, with ~200ml water.)

Great coffees! However, I’m not sure how to order them, as their website seems to require a Naver account. I’ll update if I find a way. Sorry :(

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