It Is Always Coffee Season
I used to have a love/hate relationship with my coffee. I LOVE coffee, but I hated the way my coffee maker made coffee. So, I would go out and spend tons of money on coffee at chain coffee shops. Then the coffee spirits spoke to me. They told me to take the chance on a coffee machine that was outside of my price range, but also presented me with a steal of a deal so I could finally purchase it. In honor of my new machine, I decided to purchase whole bean coffee and grind it at home. This put me on the path to trying new coffee roasters and also dropping my once a day chain coffee habit. And in doing that I learned something. Coffee is like a fine wine and should be treated as such. Where/how the coffee is grown matters, how the coffee is roasted matters, how the coffee is packaged/stored/brewed matters.
Throughout the year I have been trying out new coffees, and ways to brew coffee so I could share them with you. Below you will find my top 4 coffee Roasters of the year, 2 of my favorite ways to brew coffee, and other great gift ideas for the coffee lover
My Top 4 Coffee Roasters of the Year
I have tried so many different coffee roasters this year. Some stood out right away, and some not so much. The following roasters all offer a wide variety of choices from single-origin and blends, and some roasters even offer different options based on how you would like to brew. The ranking is based on taste, availability, and ease of access.
#1 – Birch Coffee
So let’s start with my number 1 roaster of the year, Birch Coffee. Birch Coffee is located in New York with the majority of its storefronts in Manhattan. I am in love with their Birch Blend and view it as my special coffee. (I do not share it. Haha!) It is the smoothest coffee I have tasted to date, and when I take a sip it feels like I am enveloped in a warm hug. Taste alone puts Birch coffee at number one for me. (That’s how good it is.) If you do not live in Manhattan you can purchase their coffee online via their website.
#2 – La Colombe Coffee Roasters
Next up is a coffee roaster you might be familiar with, La Colombe Coffee Roasters. They have locations all across the U.S., but you can also find their beans served in many small coffee shops as well as on the grocery store shelves. Their Nizza and Afrique are my favorite and taste delicious made in my coffee brewer or in my pour-over, and you will find one of these 2 on my coffee bar often. They also have a selection of canned coffee that comes in a variety of flavors. (Such as Mocha, Pumpkin, Peppermint, etc.)
#3 – Ceremony Coffee Roasters
Coming in 3rd is Ceremony Coffee Roasters. Ceremony coffee has 1 storefront in D.C., and the rest throughout Maryland. My favorite is their Thesis blend, and you will find me at my local Ceremony Coffee shop on my birthday and other special occasions. If you do not live in Maryland you can purchase from their website.
#4 – Counter Culture Coffee
Rounding out my list at number 4 is Counter Culture Coffee. They have Training Centers throughout the U.S. where you can stop in for tastings, and you can find them on the grocery store shelf. My favorite is their Hologram, and if you are a decaf coffee drinker I will say they have the most delicious Decalf called Slow Motion.
How you brew your coffee matters. You could purchase any of the above delicious coffee, but if you’re adding too much or too little coffee, or your coffee brewer is burning your coffee it wouldn’t matter. So, here are two ways I love to brew my coffee. If you love cappuccinos and lattes but do not have the money for a really nice espresso machine I highly recommend the Ninja Coffee Bar. The way it brews the coffee tastes amazing for specialty drinks. (I personally do not like how it makes drip coffee, but that is because I feel it makes it too strong.)
If you love drip coffee and are in the mood to slow down and enjoy the whole coffee brewing process I highly recommend purchasing a pour-over. The first type of pour-over that comes to most people’s minds is the Chemex. (You do have to purchase certain filters for it.) Other popular pour-over coffee makes are the Kalita Wave and the Hario. (These also require filters.) I personally do not like to use filters so my next purchase will be the Bodum pour-over. All of the above coffee roasters sell pour-over coffee makers and you can purchase them on their sites. (P.S. If you want to brew with a pour-over the correct way I also suggest looking into purchasing a scale to weigh your coffee and water so you get the perfect brewing amounts.)
Other Great Gift Ideas for the Coffee Lover
If you are purchasing for a coffee lover that already has the beans and the coffee brewer than here are some other gift ideas. If you have someone who loves pour-over coffee but doesn’t have a kettle to get their water to the correct temperature or storage containers for their beans than I highly suggest looking into Fellow products. Their kettles are sleek and heavy-duty, and their storage containers remove air from the containers to help your beans to last longer. You can find them HERE. (They are a little on the expensive side so if you can catch them on sale even better!) Lastly, if you are in need of great stocking stuffers for your coffee lover here are two great options. The first is The New Rules of Coffee book written by Jordan Michelman and Zachary Carlsen. It is a short but entertaining read. It provides information about coffee, how to brew it properly, roasting profiles, and more. Another great stocking stuffer is Birch Coffee magnets. They are inexpensive and have cute coffee sayings on them every coffee lover will giggle at.