New Arrivals for January

Barista-Trainer

Tom Wilkinson explores the new arrivals at the Dark Woods Mill.

New lots from Papua New Guinea

This month has been a pretty exciting one for single estate coffees at Dark Woods. We kicked off with a cupping of three new PNG’s which arrived just after Christmas. Not only were these delicious but the experience was enhanced by the fact that I was trusted to man the sample roaster for the first time. A few “interesting” profiles notwithstanding, the results were excellent and the coffees showed varying degrees of plump fruits, moreish nutty character and lots of sweetness. All are now available from our Jan 2017 coffee list

New Year, New Arboretum

Among the PNG’, the Maga jumped out as a natural single estate espresso and without much tinkering delivered such a full and juicy shot that we were inspired to break the Dark Woods mould and offer it up as our first ever Single Origin Arboretum. We are increasingly asked for single origins explicitly for espresso brewing and it so we have decided that where appropriate, Arboretum will now be a showcase for those rare coffees that deliver on the kind of body, sweetness and balance characteristic of great espresso

Special Brews

If you are looking for a something really special this month the you’re in for a treat, with my pick being the renowned Ninety Plus Nekisse. It’s an award winning Ethiopian Natural that was chosen by UK Barista Champion Dan Fellows as his competition coffee in the 2016 World Champs. I’d heard lots about it and was very excited to see it on the cupping table. I must confess to a slight wariness around naturals (I’m not entirely comfortable with coffee that tastes like a hot lunch box) but I need not have worried. This is probably the cleanest and most elegant naturally processed coffee that I’ve ever tasted and it’s well worth pushing the boat out for.

Special mention also goes to the returning Kotowa Mandarina Gesha, a floral Panamanian coffee with a crisp clementine character that balances the more perfumed notes perfectly. If Dry January is your thing then what better way to celebrate your temporary sobriety and solvency than with special coffee. Go on, you deserve it!