Our last visit with Temple Coffee & Tea was their ECX Auction Lot Ethiopian a few month’s back in the February Craft Coffee box. Recently, Temple was running a photo contest on their Instagram account with the hashtag #templecoffee. Obviously I’m a sucker for submitting photos, so I pulled out some beans and set up a shot. Fortunately for me I was one of the select winners and soon arrived two bags of Temple coffee at my door, their Guatemala Hunapu Bourbon and their Brazil Select Araponga. Upon hearing from CEO Sean Kohmescher about the business end of Temple (as I like to inquire about the companies whose coffees I get in,) I was enlightened on their transparent and impactful practices - some really good information for just about anyone wanting to dive into the coffee industry to take a few moments and read through. So make a brew, sit back, and today we’ll learn a bit more about this Sacramento based Temple Coffee & Tea and also about their Guatemala Hunapu.
Through all avenues of its business practices, Temple Coffee and Tea employs its three pillars of sustainability. Temple is highly dedicated to ecological, social, and fiscally sustainable practices because they truly believe they best serve their business, their community, and our world.
Temple Coffee and Tea has purchased energy from 100% sustainable reusable resources since its opening in 2005, and received the Green Award in 2012 from the City of Sacramento. Temple does not have trash cans for customers in retail locations; all products for on-site use and to-go are recyclable or biodegradable. Coffee grounds are donated to local farms and individual gardeners who use them for their compost needs.
Temple strives to purchase highly ecologically sustainable coffees with an emphasis on quality that is directly related to sustainability. They believe that there are many ways to grow and process high quality sustainable coffee beyond what is in certain certification guidelines. The producers, estates, and co-ops from which they purchase represent this philosophy by allowing for high levels of botanical and wildlife diversity. It is their privilege to offer these types of coffee as well as educate their staff and customers about the diverse ecological sustainable options often outside of certification bodies.
Sustainable fiscal growth is an important business practice. Temple does not have loans or outstanding payments as a business. On the 1st and 15th of every month, Temple is a 100% debt free company. They believe that this helps their fiscal strength grow organically without overreaching desire or unsustainable need.
When purchasing green coffee either directly or through an importer/exporter, Temple values transparency and honesty. Temple logs samples (approval/rejection) and C-Market differentials in order to build an in-house relationship to quality and inform the sustainable aspect level of each coffee in relation to price.
When pricing their coffees, Temple adheres to a fixed pricing model. All coffees are priced flat, not as a percentage of our cost. They do this in order to make pricing sustainable for their market and clientele, and to promote their business practice that customers and clients are paying for their knowledge, professionalism, and customer service rather than to manage their green coffee cash flow.
They believe that a well-educated citizenry better understands the value of a sustainable agenda. In this effort, Temple regularly donates gift cards, coffee, and services to various educational organizations, as well as helps fund various local non-profit organizations.
Temple makes a conscious effort to support other local small businesses to stimulate their local economy. Keeping more funds in their community reinvigorates their local economy, and they are committed to their community’s careful growth.
It is their belief that all three sustainable pillars should be valued in relation to each other. If a coffee is ecologically sustainable, and ethically sustainable, but is not of the highest quality, then paying higher prices for the coffee will in turn make it fiscally unsustainable because high prices on low quality is not marketable, and more importantly should not be marketable.
Their hope is this: as a growing business with a strong commitment to a fiscally sound business model, they set a good example for sustainable-growth business practices for their local business community.
Temple has three different lots of “Hunapu Bourbon” direct from Luis Pedro Zelaya. This first lot is what we have come to expect from Hunapu Bourbon. Clean, balanced, warm, inviting. All three of their Hunapu lots come from the Antigua region of Guatemala. All are 100% Bourbon varietal, grown by about 30 small scale farmers. Each farmer delivers their perfectly ripe cherries to Luis Pedro’s mill, Beneficio Bella Vista where the cherries are processed traditionally-Guatemalan; pulped, and fully washed to a clean perfection.
Roaster: Temple Coffee & Tea
Region: Antigua, Guatemala
Producer: Luis Pedro Zelaya
Process: Fully Washed
Varietal: 100% Bourbon
Elevation: 1,500 – 1,800m
Bonmac | 20g © to 320g (w) | 2:45 total time | 198 degrees | 1.31 TDS | 19.41% Ext.
Cinnamon and caramel notes off the bat with milk chocolate. Balanced, really pleasing medium body. What a good flavor.
Cherry notes come out more as cools but so does the creamy caramel and chocolate notes. Incredibly sexy, really enjoyable whether you are digging in for the flavor seeking or just enjoying a morning cup. Sugary sweetness develops more.
Apologies for the bare bones notes on this make, but it was just too good to pull away from.
Last notes honey and apple - lovely.
V60 no stir | 23g © to 385g (w) | 2:15 total time | 197 degrees | 1.27 TDS | 19.76% Ext.
Enjoyed this one with a friend, so no extensive notes. Listed solely for recording of brew method/extraction.
Still hints of cinnamon, chocolate, but now noticing interesting earthy notes similar to a Sumatra.
Siphon | 30g © to 480g (w) | 1:30 pull heat - 2:45 total time | 200 degrees | 1.30 TDS | 22.00% Ext. (Immersion mode)
A bit spiced, bright on the front, really interesting citrusy notes but quickly covered up by milk chocolate notes. Finding some spiced nut flavor I wasn’t finding in the other makes of it, possibly due to the immersion. Slight earthy notes, also detected in the V60 make, but also as it opens up more some nice sweetness starts to come out.
Cane sugar, glazed, really nice. Dang, that really is like a glazed donut sweetness with orange, cherry, stone fruit sweetness - sliding into a caramel and nutty finish. Really creamy now, still orange acidity and spiced nuts and chocolate in the finish.
Final notes are deliciously caramel and chocolate.
Woodneck | 20g © to 320g (w) | 2:50 total time | 198 degrees | 1.35 TDS | 19.96% Ext.
Balanced cinnamon notes, creamy like peanut butter with a crisp citrus acidity on the front, stone fruit like peach, cherry too, with a nutty and milk chocolate finish. Very nice, rich medium bodied, warm and inviting. There is a nice syrupy quality building in the cup, hints of floral as well, with citrusy notes sweeping every sip. Quite harmonious with all its notes, a solid cup that’s comforting, structured, but also really fun as it opens up.
More creaminess comes in the cup as it cools, with nectary sweetness developing. It gets nice and softly sweet, tea leaf notes arriving in the cup, still balanced with the nuttiness and now lesser notes of chocolate, but still a fun candy orange slice, peach, plum and cherry juiciness there too.
Cooling further is just like having a Werther’s in your mouth. Toffee, caramel, chocolate.
Shaken Iced Chemex | 20g © to 200g (w) | 155g ice | 2:00 total time | 197 degrees | shake & serve
Nice and crisp - citrus notes and even a bit of tea present initially giving way to some sweetness and more caramel notes, with a tiny taste of peanuts in the end. Honest though there are some fun, complex if I can say, fruit and floral notes I’m finding similarly to in a Yirgacheffe. Maybe it’s just those swirls of caramel and honey I keep finding, but I notice lemon peel, cherry, raspberry, and peach with really sugary finishes mixed hints of spiced nuts.
The head from the emulsion, while drinking, gives me the tiniest reminiscent of hops like wheat beer, and also carries really sweet candy-like notes when the cup is finish.
Nice and refreshing iced.
Gino Dripper | 35g © to 552g (w) | 3:40 total time | 198 degrees | 1.33 TDS | 19.37% Ext.
Juicy quality exists in an otherwise spiced, nutty and a bit woodsy cup. Medium bodied, but carries a nice weight to it in the mouth. The beginning has a slight ting of citrus acidity but I’m finding difficulty placing the flavor - grapefruit maybe but it isn’t as bitter. Now that I am experiencing this make, the ‘earthy’ tones I was getting before might be closer to clove, as that stands out more in this method. Still getting milk chocolate in the finish.
Mid cup I’m starting to feel it open into those sweeter notes - dark honey tends to exist with cinnamon spiced fruits too taking form. All of a sudden there is a drop in intensity in the cup and the notes present themselves a bit softer. Honey, cinnamon, and stone fruit sweetness growing, still with a syrupy body. Peach and grape seem to be the first distinct sweet fruit notes I can find, plum coming in too. The most interesting thing about the cup is this neat lingering finish that makes me think of cherry, berries, and now more milky chocolate. Really pleasing now from the moment you sip into the long long finish.
Crisp and luscious fruit sweetness really begins to take form, and the cup is really articulated right towards the bottom of the cup but then without warning, it’s gone.
Citrus, sugary-sweet, stone fruit, chocolate.
This was a pleasing offering in just about every preparation, from start to finish. It helps that the extractions were all within SCAA window, not really pushing in strength or extraction even though I usually like to give it a run at higher strength and see what comes out of it. As I mentioned in the Bonmac brewing notes “Incredibly sexy, really enjoyable whether you are digging in for the flavor seeking or just enjoying a morning cup,” and that’s true. Just about any level of coffee drinking can get lost in this cup for its drinkability, smoothness, and all around delicious flavor. This is another one of those Guatemalan offerings that change my preconceptions about coffees from the region, and whether or not that’s what Temple was going for, knowing more about the company it is definitely something they embrace.
Since this is the first offering of Hunapu Bourbon, look forward to the next two: “Hunapu Bourbon Temple Reserve” and “Hunapu Bourbon Nano-Lot.” While the Hunapu Bourbon is now gone, if you act fast you can get some of thier Candelaria, another Hunapu offering from producer Luis Pedro, here.
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.