- On September 29, 2016
- award winning coffee, Coffee, coffee roasting, espresso, espresso blend, golden bean, roastery
Our award winning espresso has a unique name. The Urban Dictionary meaning of DANK: Dank(adj): An expression frequently used by stoners and hippies for something of high quality.
We have created a new seasonal espresso blend and it’s called DANK. We’re proud of this one, it took home a Silver and Bronze medal at the Golden Bean North America competition held in Portland in September 2016.
Coffees used in blend: 60% Ecuador / 40% Ethiopia
Tasting Notes: Sweet, bright, chocolate, green apple, lemon grass, and honey sweetness
The Process of Creating an Espresso Blend
Crafting an espresso blend is hard. Since we roast all of our coffees to their maximum potential and then blend (aka post roast blending) finding the perfect balance between 2-3 coffees to create a harmonious orchestra of flavor is a test of one’s coffee merit, so to speak.
Our first blend, Tin Lizzie, was an Italian-style (slightly darker roast, but definitely not burnt) espresso. It was thick, rich, chocolatey, and toasty. Our focus for this new blend was to create a sweeter espresso with tons of clarity in the taste. To achieve this, we only used washed process coffees, which tend to offer the most clarity among the three main processing methods (i.e., washed, semi-washed, natural). If a farm’s washed processing is precise, well organized, and consistent, then the farm will produce great coffees with incredible flavor clarity.
We began by experimenting with about 8-9 new coffees we’d sourced for the season. These were the best coffees of the harvest, some of them with +90 scores from Coffee Review.
We cupped again and again, taking lots of notes (LOTS of notes). In one week we had narrowed the list from 9 coffees to 4 coffees, then to three. By this time, we passed our blends (with different ratios) to our espresso professionals.
After two weeks of pulling espresso shots and adjusting blend ratios, we ended up deciding on two washed process coffees: one African (Ethiopian) and a South American (Ecuador).
Next step came the fighting over ratios, pulling more and more shots, and getting way, way, way too caffeinated.
Then, finally! We came to an agreement on one final ratio and are stoked to share the results (a very complex and sweet espresso blend) with you!
So what does this new espresso blend taste like?
Well, it’s very sweet and bright, almost sparkling with fruity flavors and counter-balanced with smooth chocolate notes. As the layers of complexity unfold, we experience notes of green grapes and green apple acidity, a creamy mouth-feel, brown sugar and honey sweetness on the tongue’s sides, pleasant lemon grass notes, a lingering tanginess and clean finish.
So Why the Name DANK?
Two reasons, really.
- The entire city of Washington D.C. reeks of Marijuana these days. This is no surprise givin the recent changes to the city’s laws on homegrown marijuana for recreational use, as well as the relatively easy-to-obtain medical card that allows you to purchase marijuana directly from medicinal marijuana dispensaries.
- We really liked the urban dictionary meaning of DANK. It sounds just like what we were aiming to achieve with this new espresso blend…. DANK (adj.): An expression frequently used by stoners and hippies for something of high quality. Example: “That burritos was dank, man.” or… “That burritos was the dankness” – Urban Dictionary
Win Awards, reward farmers, share with customer….do it again
Excited about our new blend, we decided to send a sample of Dank to the Golden Bean North America competition held in Portland, Oregon in September. In all honesty, the blend was barely ready, we had maybe sampled it twice on espresso and we’re still making final decisions of the blend ratio. In the end we hustled to make a quick decision, shipped it off overnight – one day late for submission. Thankfully, the guys at Golden Bean still allowed our coffee to be submitted! Thanks, Brendo!
We were totally stoked when we got the results: our Dank seasonal espresso blend received a Silver & Bronze medal in the two categories we entered (with milk and without)! We competed with over 300 great roasters from across the US and we are ecstatic to have this blend gain national recognition.