Roast Points: A Coffee Journey

Sometimes, I joke about my first true love being something non-human. My so-called first true loves range from the piano to writing to black eyeliner. Honestly, though, I admit that one of my long-standing objects of affection is a good cup of coffee. If you have it in your head to interact with me in morning hours, you can butter me up by brewing coffee. I grew up drinking tea and continue to have a special affinity for it, but coffee has been my caffeinated beverage of choice since my teen years. I spent a brief period of my working life employed by the biggest coffee company in the world with a green siren as its logo, but had to jump ship due to the company’s starvation wages. From the French press to shots of espresso to the old standby of a drip brewer, I love it all. (Except Keurig. Keurig coffee tastes like someone scraped an ash tray into a mug of hot water and has a horrible environmental impact. I will not mince words here: Keurig can fuck off.)

So, it makes sense that when I saw the opportunity to support independent coffee companies in the midst of pandemic-induced economic peril, I seized it. A pal shared a referral link to Trade Coffee, a company that offers a customized subscription service for coffee hounds. Take a quiz, get bags mailed to you on a schedule, support indie roasters. Oh, and the first bag was my favorite four-letter word: FREE! In a moment of glee, I signed up and waited eagerly for my first shipment.

My initial bag was a dark roast from Gimme Coffee. I opted to get coarse-ground beans since I lack a proper burr grinder but prefer to use my French press. The press and this coffee were a match made in heaven, assuming my teeny kitchen is heaven on earth. I love a robust and nutty coffee, and my preferences steer toward beans that are grown in the Americas south of Mexico. Ergo, it made sense that this little bag was exactly what I wanted. I was sad to see her go.

Gimme Coffee! Absolutely delicious!
I’ve had this Bodum French press for at least eight years. It makes the richest and most delicious cup of coffee in my opinion.
Not only do I adore coffee, but I have a growing collection of silly mugs from dear friends and family. This is a great cup for pushing through tough times.

Shipment numero dos fell short of my expectations. I don’t know if I received a bad batch or if it was just too light for my taste, but I found it to be bland and hard to discern much flavor. My stepdaughter and I powered through it, but we were not sorry to move on to bigger and better brews. Doma, if you guys are reading this, I have faith that you can do better. Maybe your medium roast just doesn’t gel with my taste.

A mediocre photo of a mediocre coffee
The newest addition to my coffee mug family! If you have never lived with cats, this mug will seem crass. I definitely howled with laughter when I first saw it and continue to giggle when I use it.

My third and most recent shipment was one that I picked out myself. Trade gives you the option to peruse your coffee matches and alter the coffees in your queue, and when I saw a bag with a purple label, I had to have it. Misfit Coffee sells this house blend year-round, and they describe it as having notes of dark cocoa and praline. I second that, and would bathe in this stuff if I could. It is delicious.

I told you the bag was pretty! Also, this mug was a birthday gift from a fellow writer. I will treasure it forever.

I am eagerly awaiting my fourth bag which is scheduled to ship this week. My hope is that it will arrive in time for the start of NaNoWriMo since I will need ALL the caffeinated beverages.

Speaking of! NaNoWriMo begins on November 1 which is also the next time I am updating the blog. I have a plan to stay up past midnight on Hallow’s Eve to get started, so I may be able to share some of the early words here on the blog that same day.

Also, if you are interested in trying out Trade Coffee for yourself, I will drop my referral link here. As I mentioned above, your first bag is free. In a time when I can’t hug people safely outside of my household, I can at least share the love in other ways. Hope you enjoy!

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