Roasted in Orange County, California with locations in Los Angeles, Portland, and Orange County, this week I'm using another natural process single origin coffee from Barter Coffee Roasters. This caturra varietal from the Parrita Aserri region of Costa Rica was roasted surprisingly much darker than indicated. No visible oils or ashy flavors present, but certainly a more developed and thus less acidic coffee than your typical single origin.
Flavors are smooth and mild, with a hint of roastiness. The apple and toasted almond description seems pretty accurate overall, with a mild apple sweetness and a nutty finish. The coffee is less bold than you would expect from a natural at this roast level, and would serve well to someone that is trying single origin coffees coming from more traditional Italian style roast levels with very low acidity and not much fruit and no floral flavors.
Being a light roasted, fruit forward fan, I tend to brew coffees like this on the cooler and faster side. Brewed, I kept this one at 1:15 ratios at 197*F and on the fast side, with 15 gram doses finishing out in 2:15 and 24 gram doses finishing in 2:45.
As espresso, I switched to the IMS Precision Double 16/20 gram basket, and maybe should have even switched to the stock double basket, as precision baskets like the VST and IMS tend to fight or not do as well with darker roasted coffees. The IMS did create a more balanced and sweeter shot than the VST, and the coffee made for nice cappuccinos and lattes, punching through the milk. In the IMS basket my favorite shots were pulled at:
- 19 grams in to 33 grams out
- 26 seconds at 198*F
Available for a very reasonable $15.00 in a great zip top 12 ounce bag, Costa Rica Hellen Caturra would be a great coffee for those wanting to dip their toes into single origins, without getting into something acidic or too fruity or floral.