One of the big hitters and keystones in the push of specialty coffee, Klatch Coffee has a long deserved reputation as sourcing and roasting great coffee. Combine that reputation and track record with one of the two most recognizable names in coffee farming, and you're bound to have a good combo. You generally here of coffees from different regions, even specific towns or specific washing stations, but when it comes to household names of specific farmers, one of the two that is immediate announced is Wiford Lamastus.
Wilford is a farmer and producer in Panama producing the Elida family of coffees, typically found as Elida Natural, Honey, or Washed. His coffees are always highly regarded and well rated as being some of the best. In this blend, Klatch uses the Natural and Honey processed versions of this highly regarded coffee from this highly regarded producer to create a top-tier blend. The top of the tier if you will, this coffee just won "America's Best Espresso" at CoffeeFest in this year.
With notes of berry, a caramel-chocolate body and a bright stone-fruit finish, the coffee is not overly complex, but just really good. In the case of the first time using this coffee it was made really good as I was also using a KafaTek Monolith Flat and pulling shots on a single group Slayer. This combo is also a top-tier or top of the tier equipment, and it did not disappoint.
It was hard not to have high expectations of the coffee given it's reputation and just by opening the bag to some amazing aromas. Pulling this coffee as a true Slayer style shot:
- 18 grams in 18g VST basket
- Long slow pre-brew of 20 seconds
- 5-10 second slow ramp up to full pressure
- 20 seconds at full brew pressure (about 9 bar)
- 10 seconds declining brew pressure
- 50 second full brew time at 200*F
- Approximately 34-36 grams out.
The coffee was dense, layered, creamy, sweet, and just about perfect in terms of what you could want from an espresso. Fellow Home-Barista and owner of the pictured Monolith Flat, Pete, said it might have been one of the best shots he'd had all year, I would not disagree.
Back on the home court, I'm finding the coffee to bias the caramel and chocolate notes a bit more, perhaps of product of using a conical burr grinder, rather than a flat. Pulling the coffee a little cooler than 200*, around 27 seconds, as a ristretto seemed to bring out a bit more berry notes in the aroma in particular. The molasses/cocoa powder kind of dry like sweetness is still the predominant flavor, and in a pleasant sense.
The coffee is pairing well in milk as well with a creamy cocoa flavor with a hint of berry sweetness. Not necessarily an out of the ordinary cappuccino, but a good one indeed.
I'm a little more than halfway through this bag and it's proven to be pretty tolerant of most recipes and easy to work with, though it absolutely sung on the Slayer paired with the big flat burr Monolith. $21.95 for a 12 ounce bag or I bought it as part of a duo with their Golden Bean Espresso for $39.95, and then I added on their World's Best Espresso for $13.95 as well, so keep your eyes peeled in the coming weeks as I'm diving deep into three different and very promising espresso blends.