I know I’ve said before that nothing excites me more than watching the mailman walk up my sidewalk, open the door to my mailbox, and stuff a big package of coffee for me to review inside of it. That’s still very true.But I’ve discovered an experience that comes in a very close second: when a roaster or cafe owner emails me and invites me down to the shop or roasting space to try out some new beans they just got in. A couple of days ago, Travis, the owner of The Wormhole, informed that he had just gotten back from California and brought a few different coffees back with him—he was very eager to let me taste them.
And I was very eager to oblige.
I braved the crowds at Wicker Park Fest, snaked and bobbed and weaved my way up Milwaukee Avenue to the cafe, and was greeted by Robert and his glorious beard, and he was all too happy to custom make a cup with his weapon of choice—the Aeropress.
Welcome to my Table, here in the corner of this cafe. Today we are sipping a complimentary cup of Ritual Coffee Roasters Las Delicias Colombia. Feel free to pull up a chair.
In the mountains above the small town of Gigante in Colombia, Duver Rojas grows these Caturra and Typíca trees on his farm, Las Delicias, between 1550-1750 meters above sea level.
The coffee is depulped and then dry fermented for 12-18 hours before being rinsed and sun-dried under a parabolic covers. The cover protects the drying coffee from moisture in the excessively damp environment.
origin: Gigante, Colombia
farm: Las Delicias
elevation: 1550-1750 meters above sea level
cultivars: Caturra, Typica
process: fully washed, patio dried
When I open the package of this coffee and give the beans a good shake or two, a wonderful floral and peanut butter aroma comes floating out. It smells so creamy, so sweet. There’s even a little bit of citrus hiding in those flowers.
The flavor is every bit as pleasant.
While it’s still hot, the heavenly aroma is sort of compromising the flavor, because my nose is hording all of the attention that my five senses can allow. From what I can tell, though, it still has that peanut butter creaminess and a faint lilac floral note. While it cools off, fruity juiciness comes bubbling up and up and up, seeping through every crack in the crust of the cup; cherry, apple, raspberry, strawberry, and peach, while a zesty lemon acidity tingles the taste buds. This is a very sweet cup, very delicious.
What saves it from being too sweet is a bed of salted caramel and toffee. The creamy toffee is heavy enough that it weighs the lighter fruit and floral notes down to earth, and the caramel is salty enough that the fruity juiciness isn’t overbearing. Every sip, a delight.
Light body; creamy mouthfeel; lemon acidity; crisp, clean finish.
the bottom line:
I really wish I could have a gotten better taste of this. I really wish I could have spent days, a couple weeks even, with a whole package of it. Not just because amount that I had at the Wormhole was so small, but mostly because the samples of it that I had that day were so delicious. I felt a dejection at the bottom of every cup because it was so emptied of coffee, but a joy in my belly, that it was so full of coffee goodness. I could drink this coffee all day and feel that constant internal tug of war between elation and dejection.
Ritual Coffee Roasters Las Delicias, indeed, lives up to its name.
Really, a very pleasant cup of coffee. One that will make you sorry if you miss it.
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Andrew is a husband, father, dog lover, craft beverage enthusiast, content creator, and niche market Internet celebrity. Formerly of A Table in the Corner of the Cafe and The Pulitzer Project and contributor to Barista Magazine and Mental Floss, he’s been writing on the Internet for years.