Brian Beyke

Blueprint Coffee - Karimukui Kenya - Craft Coffee - January 2014

Brian Beyke

Ah, the first Craft Coffee box of 2014.  I must say, I was a little disheartened to find that my box would contain two coffees from Kenya this month.  Craft Coffee recently changed their selection methods of coffees for a persons’ box.  There is now a rating system where you rate the coffees 1-5.  It’s tough, though.  While I enjoy a good coffee, I did enjoy the exploration of whatever I find in the box.  Specifically too, I have enjoyed some of the Kenya coffees I have received over the past few months, but that doesn’t mean I want 3 Kenyans every month.  Do I alter my ratings so that I get diversity?  Do I just rate them how I taste them and risk getting a potentially non-fitting pallet profile for myself?  

While I internally wage war with my thoughts, let’s divert back to the topic at hand - Blueprint Coffee’s Karimukui Kenya.

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Details:

Roaster: Blueprint Coffee

Producer: Karimukui Washing Station

Origin: Kirinyaga Kenya

Variety: SL28

Elevation: 1,300 – 1,900mas

Process: Washed

Brew Method:

Clever | 34g © to 493g (w) | 3:35 then drop | 203 degrees

Dry aroma is akin to rock candy. 

Wet aroma I find floral notes, citrus, a very palpable honey aroma, and spice.

 The cup itself smells like warm honey.

I begin with a cup that is juicy with a vanilla extract sweetness, buttery aftertaste, and grapefruit acidity directly on the front of the tongue.  There is a creamy coating on the sides of the mouth, but not a very wide cup as far as total mouthfeel is concerned.  

 The acidity drops after a few minutes to more of a lemon and then orange acidity.  It gets much more juicy and buttery (thinking Trefoils), but don’t disregard the lingering acidity.  Cherry and cranberry notes are some of the possible fruits bouncing around in a soft sea of citrus juices of lemon, lime, and orange.

 As the cup draws even cooler you get more of a silky mouthfeel that lightly fills the whole mouth.  It isn’t necessarily in a deep way, but more of a soft and full coverage – think about when the wind blows as you are laying out in the sun.  The cup smells a lot more floral now, with a few notes of that present in the cup itself. 

 The initial shock from the beginning acidity still seems to be there, so when the aftertaste is gone from my sips I still recall the acidity as if it where time-stamped on the tip of my tongue. 

While the acidity in the sips isn’t sharp anymore, it is more reminiscent of a “slow burn” of some sauces or rubs you may find in food items. 

Sharp beginning, juicy body, lingering acidity. 

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Brew Method:

Chemex | 30g © to 450g (w) | 4:43 total time | 200 degrees (preferred method)

On the first several sips there was a mid tongue orange acidity with an underlying sweetness not super definable yet.

Dried fruit really present: cranberry, raisin, prune, cherry.  A tad creamy in the finish like marshmallow flush or whipped cream.

Acidity falls to the background of what opens up to a more juicy body.

After a few more minutes and whoa, that got deep fast.  Really lingering deep stone fruit and citrusy sweetness.

Surrounds the mouth in the end of the mug with a light berry sweetness and shortbread in the long finish.  Almost like danish butter cookies with a raspberry fruit filling.

It didn’t really have a penetrating acidity in this brew as compared to the other methods I had brewed on.

Dried fruits, mild acidity, shortbread finish.

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This was an interesting coffee to me.  It had a sweetness to it that was different than a) what I call the traditional Kenyan profile and b) the fruity/floral backend Kenyan profile.  Besides on the Chemex, it had a rather unique acidity too - not displeasing, but without that initial intensity (as noted in the Clever review) could have possibly been more enjoyable.  The mouthfeel was great.  A solid cup for sure.  

Co-host of the I Brew My Own Coffee Podcast and always has all the chocolate. I also love to play board games. Yea, let's go do that right now.