I tend to try and support all of the great specialty roasters and the wonderful things so many of them are doing, and doing that can kind of mean shunning the now corporate giants like Intelligentsia or Stumptown. But you cannot deny that specialty roasters turned business conglomerate assets elevate coffee quality and the availability to high quality coffee. And at the end of the day, Intelligentsia has deep roots in this game, and I really haven't had a disappointing coffee from them. They know what they're doing and earned their reputation for a reason.
Soapbox and consumerism morals aside, when a coupon for 30% came through my inbox, I couldn't pass up a good deal on quality coffee. This washed heirloom varietal from the Chelbasa, Gedeo Zone is described as having flavors of, "white grape and tangerine sweetness complimenting tantalizing chrysanthemum aromatics." It has admittedly been a minute since I've smelled any chrysanthemums, but the sweet floral aromatics are very rich and pleasing during brewing. I would say the other flavor descriptors are accurate, with a light and sweet white grape sweetness with a sparkling tangerine acidity added. This makes the coffee sound like it will be very delicate and light on the palette, however it has a very nice body and is richer than expected.
I found the sweet spot on the Hario V60 to be a 1: 16.5 ratio or 22.7 grams in to 375 grams out in 3:15 with a 30 second stirred bloom. I kept everything else pretty much the same as always (50 gram pour increments, stir after first pour), but used slightly hotter water at 203*F, which seemed to help bring out more transparency and the floral note.
Kurimi was equally good as a single origin espresso, dosing 18 grams in an 18 gram VST basket. Shots were pretty easy to pull overall, typically aiming for 36-39 grams out in 30 seconds at 202*F. Espresso shots were less transparent, but more syrupy sweet, with good acidity. The coffee made for a good cappuccino as well, really able to punch through milk, again despite the description that would make you think it would be very light.
This coffee isn't necessarily the least expensive at $22 for a 12 ounce bag, but it was very good, and a good grab with the 30% off and free shipping on orders over $40. And circling back round to the "big" roaster discussion, I will say that this coffee seemed to be very well roasted. It was developed enough to show balance and versatility, but light enough to really let the coffee's flavors come out. And that kind of roasting expertise is exactly how these bigger players got to where they are in the first place.