Brian Beyke

Bowtruss Coffee Roasters - La Cuesta Costa Rica - Mistobox - February 2014

Brian Beyke

Bowtruss is another coffee roaster from the Chicago area that I have been anxious to try.  I was slightly conflicted when I saw this offering as the tasting notes listed were nothing I would imagine a Costa Rican coffee to highlight.  Needless to say, it had me very intrigued.  



Roaster: Bowtruss Coffee Roasters

Origin: Costa Rica, Leon Cortez, San Jose / Tarrazu

Grower/Farm: Ronny Hernandez Padilla, La Cuesta Farm

Process: Fully washed

Varieties: Caturra, Catuai 

Elevation: 1,700m

Brew Method:

Woodneck | 24g © to 336g (w) | 3:10 total time | 201 degrees

Dry aroma is layered with spice and grape.

The brewed aroma is that of warm berries, lemon pound cake, and cinnamon.

The cup itself smells of fresh ripe cherries.

Honestly - the cupping notes are right on.  

I’m getting a sparkling grape sweetness over an orange peel acidity.  A medium to light body with spicy nuts in the finish.

Slightly creamy but growing more juicy as the sweetness pops, but it is balanced with that spiciness.  The spiciness to me isn’t indicative of the roast, but more so of Costa Rica.  

Grape jelly and cinnamon toast come to mind.

Cherry and blackberry seem to be new detectable flavors as the juiciness rises and the spiciness becomes subdued, with a hint of cream in the long finish as well.  Orange peel acidity never leaves, still noticeable in the finish.    

As the cup gets even cooler nearly all the spice is gone and surprisingly the acidity lowers too.  The cup sings with grape sweetness, apple crispness, and it begins to get deeper.  It almost seems the cup had two profile ranges of beginning to end points.  

Grape, juicy, spice.


Brew Method:

Siphon | 30g © to 420g (w) | 1:10 pull heat - 2:15 total time  | 200 degrees

Starts off a little more muted than the Woodneck.

Cinnamon and clove spices swirl in the cup, but there isn’t as much of a spiced nuts taste.  There is a little sweetness but it isn’t as up front grape as before.  It still seemed a bit sparkly.

Very clean, very balanced.

There is defined prune and less defined grape fruits in there with a date-like sweetness.

As it cools the spice starts to change and it becomes a little more juicy.  Rear mouth orange peel acidity shows up.

Apple and grape fruits dance around with melon being welcomed in the finish.

As it cools further you get big plump grape notes filling the mouth with the spice sitting comfortably in the back.  A very pleasing balance of flavors happening here.

Again, it starts growing deeper and wider and more luscious. 

Spicy, clean, plump grape, luscious.  


Brew Method:

Clever | 34g © to 493g (w) | 3:35 then drop | 200 degrees

Spicy and woody at first, with a citrus splash to it.  Clean and light.  

I can start to sense tremors of what is about to be an eruption of juiciness.

The spice and wood notes start to edge off and it begins to form a round sweetness.  Apple seems to be the first to show up.  Grape following soon after as well as honeydew.

As it cools further, most spice dissolves to the background of a light juicy sweetness, but surprisingly not as deep as the other preparations.  

It finishes with a caramel sweetness.

Spicy start, clean, juicy, sweet finish.  


I’d be lying if I said that I typically enjoy Costa Rican coffees.  Most of the ones I have tried in the past have been ashy, roasty, and a little unenjoyable.  Bowtruss completely changed that perspective and exceeded all expectations I had for this coffee.  It was a great balance of sweetness and spice, and more of a delicate offering than some of the more full-bodied Costa Ricans of Yesteryear.  

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.