Lavazza Coffee Company is lesson in Italian coffee history. The company was founded in 1895 in Turn Italy, and started as a small grocery store at Via San Tommaso. Today the company is being managed by a 4th generation of the Lavazza family. The company imports coffee from all over the globe including countries like; Brazil, Columbia, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Uganda, Indonesia and Mexico. The company operates several retail coffee shops and produces coffee for personal consumption in whole bean and ground coffee varieties.
Some families have special traditions, and growing up in my family we had one tradition that was strictly practiced every year without hesitation. I’m speaking of Valentine’s Day and the infamous bumpy chocolate cake. Go ahead, fire up Google, Bing or Yahoo and type in those magical keywords, “Chocolate Bumpy Cake” and hit Enter.
The “bumpy’ was awesome, it was a symbol of pure love, encased neatly in a pristine white cardboard box with a window on top. The window was key, because you have to see the bumps, otherwise it was just another chocolate cake. The nice stiff white cardboard box gave you the feeling this cake was some serious confectionary art, worthy of such an important container. And be careful when you open the box, don’t damage any of those bumps!
When you looked at those bumps, those beauties were standing so tall and majestic, like mini butter cream Himalaya Mountains of buttercream bliss, just waiting to take your taste buds to Valhallla and your liver into an LDL cholesterol production spike that would look like the RPM gauge on a Formula One car going completely into the red before the engine blows .
We had one every year. No seriously, Dad never skipped a year, ever. I think he was dreaming of ‘bumpy’ the night before, maybe weeks or even months. Maybe he had a secret calendar somewhere that we didn’t know about that had the date circled in red magic maker each year and he counted down the days. It’s his secret, I’ll let him keep it, I’m just saying; Easter Bunny, Santa Claus, “bumpy”…..every year!
If you are so lucky as to be able to procure one of these beautiful cakes, I’d suggest indulging yourself completely and drinking a coffee that’s worthy of such an occasion.
The coffee roast is a medium roast coffee. They make coffee bean and ground coffee products for this roast so if you don’t have grinder if you want to try this amazing coffee. However the whole freshly ground option does give the taste a little more kick, and is certainly a necessity for Espresso, Cappaccino and Latte’s.
The coffee aroma is beautiful, and has a nice nutty scent with deep smoke.
The body is medium, a standard medium roast and medium body. It’s an espresso roast but not too bold.
I can sense a little nut and caramel in the coffee but almost no sweetness.
The acidity is perfect for a medium roast to me. It’s got great balance and doesn’t have that sour, bitter flavor you can get with other espresso roast coffee blends.
The feel is smooth, and velvety. I’m drinking this as black coffee but if this was used for Cappaccino or Cafe Latte it would be even more amazing.
The finish is excellent. I love this coffee because it’s so smooth and easy. It’s got great finesse and a lovely taste at the end.
THE COFFEE GOOD STUFF
True medium roast coffee
Smooth, velvety and not too intense
Excellent on it’s own as black coffee, but even better in cream or milk
THE COFFEE BAD STUFF
Nothing, I love everything about this coffee.
Lavazza always delivers, just like Dad did with the ‘bumpy’. It’s a great coffee and it’s even better if you’ve got a little something sweet to go with it. Give it a shot with your next dessert or sweet breakfast pastry. Who knows maybe you will start your very own tradition? Enjoy!
LAVAZZA SUPER CREMA MEDIUM ESPRESSO ROAST COFFEESTRONG SCORE: 91
Black Rifle Coffee Company is a unique story. The company was founded in 2014 by Evan Hafer, a former Green Beret. Hafer produced just one coffee blend when he first started, it was the Freedom Roast coffee, and it sold so well, that the rest is history. Black Rifle coffee is now known not only for it’s high quality coffee products, but for it’s pervasive marketing and advertising campaigns. They have a reputation as a patriot coffee company because they donate a portion of their sales to military, local police and first responders.
Let’s see if the coffee can hold it’s own with this review, or if it’s just another over-hyped caffeine crazed social media experiment.
Let me just start this by saying, I lost another coffee friend yesterday. We had been friends for only about 5 years, but it was a really special relationship, because he was always there when I needed him. He will be missed, just like the other 4 coffee cups that have shattered into thousands of pieces by someone, who shall remain nameless, but knows who she is and how serious this is starting to become in our house.
Since we are down another coffee cup and I’m going to have to start doing spare jobs on the side to afford to buy new one’s, I decided we would go simple today and review one of the most popular Black Rifle Coffee products, the Freedom Blend K Cup. It’s easy to make with the Keuring Coffee Maker and if the coffee is as good as it’s been touted online, then I should be happy. I’m not a big fan of K Cups, but I’m always willing to test, and retest and keep an open mind. The same way I’m keeping an open mind that some magically fairy princess will swoop down and one day wave a magic wand and instantly make all my broken coffee cups come back to life.
The Freedom Blend K Cups are surprisingly good. I’m ashamed to admit, this coffee is much better than I thought it would be. The Keurig machine has done a great job this morning.
The coffee roast is a medium roast coffee. They make coffee bean and ground coffee products for this roast called the Freedom Roast. Don’t confuse this blend with the Black Rifle Freedom Fuel blend, which is a dark roast coffee.
The coffee aroma is deep and hearty, and isn’t weak, it’s got some legs to it and is a little more intense than I thought it would be for a K Cup.
The body is medium it’s not too heavy, it’s got a pleasant lightness about it but not too light, the roast is balanced and fine.
Hints of cocoa, a little touch of caramel, maybe a smidge of toffee, it’s all there in this coffee.
I love the low acidity in this coffee, it’s got a really nice balance and it’s incredibly smooth for a K Cup coffee. Much better than most I’ve tried in the past.
The feel is slightly rich with a hint of crispness but balanced and smooth
The finish is nice and smooth. I get a little chocolate on the back of it, but it’s not a heavy chocolate flavor. The roast is balanced and has the refined flavor of the better quality medium roast coffees.
THE COFFEE GOOD STUFF
True medium roast coffee
Balanced roast, and excellent acidity and flavor
Rich finish but not heavy
THE COFFEE BAD STUFF
There isn’t much to say in terms of negativity about this coffee. It’s a solid coffee and one of the better one’s I’ve had from the K Cup products. The Black Rifle website says the brew methods for this coffee are Espresso, Pour Over, Cold Brew, Drip, and Press. I’d like to review the French Press version to see the difference in taste and I may do that in a future coffee review, so stay tuned.
I will be the first to admit I was pleasantly surprised with the ability of this coffee to deliver in a K Cup. The coffee itself is very good and the taste and flavor are among the higher class medium roast coffee products on the market today. This coffee is definitely worth a try if you are a regular K Cup user and want to expand your horizons and try something different.
Black Rifle Freedom Blend K Cup COFFEESTRONG SCORE: 91
When you see a sign that says HALF OFF, what is the first thing that clicks in your mind? I’m usually a little skeptical at first, because I’m just that way, so I always ask myself, “Why would this be half off?” A really funny guy I used to know 30 years ago who sold men’s Giorgio Armani suits once told me, “Look there’s 3 basic rules you need to follow in life:
First, where ever you are in the world, when you are in a bar, you never drink beer unless it’s directly out of the bottle.
Second, never go to a doctor who gives discounts on surgery.
Third, if the garbage dumpster behind the supermarket you shop at smells like rotten food all the time, don’t buy anything on sale from that place, ever, because you can get it out back for free.” He was a value guy. I like a value, so when I see it, I try to validate it really a value, then execute a plan to take advantage.
Gevalia Coffee was a pioneer 35 years ago when they started their coffee subscription model and sold premium coffee direct. Their coffee has always been pretty consistent in quality but in the last decade they’ve been competing with the Starbucks coffee monster and all the local super premium roasters. They have a Special Reserve coffee brand that I’ve never tried, and today I found it on sale for 50% off in my local supermarket so I thought I’d give it a try
Gevalia Reserve Costa Rica Coffee is a medium- dark roast coffee sourced from 100% Arabica single origin coffee beans from Costa Rica, Latin America. The coffee roast is perfectly suited for those who like a medium roast coffee. Gevalia recommends the best results are using a French Press for this coffee, but it’s perfectly okay to brew a pot using a drip coffee maker.
The coffee aroma is slightly heavy with hints of dark chocolate. The Gevalia website says this has more of a toffee aroma, but I’m not getting any toffee on the nose. There is also a faint hint of some sweetness as well.
The coffee is medium bodied with a nice richness and solid overall finish. I love the richness of the body but it’s medium body so it’s nothing over the top. I can detect a slight hint of a floral flavor for a minute when I first taste it, then it gets a tiny bit smoky. Gevalia says this is on the market side of a medium roast but personally I think it’s a perfect medium roast
The coffee sweetness is nonexistent. There’s no chocolate taste in this coffee.
The coffee acidity is medium similar to what you would expect from a medium roast coffee. I especially enjoy the fact the acidity isn’t big as it doesn’t make me salivate 30 seconds after I swallow.
The coffee mouthfeel is silky and smooth. I can detect a slight hint of some kind of floral component in the the nose tricked me into thinking this was a bolder coffee, but it is more medium roast on the mouth . As the coffee cools a bit the rich coffee flavor faded and the finish was a little less pronounced.
The coffee finish is clean and balanced, no sour flavors. It’s got a nice finish for a coffee of this price.
Gevalia Coffee, has been known for it’s consistency and quality for many years. I’m a big fan of Costa Rican coffee and this one from Gevalia for the money is definitely worth a try. Honestly, when I saw the price I was thinking this coffee might not hold up to others I’ve had in the past but that’s not the case here. It’s an incredible value, and if you save enough drinking it, you might just be about to be walking around the town in the latest Armani fashion. Happy Friday!
Gevalia Special Reserve Costa Rica Score: 90 points / 100
Sometimes you just need to mix it up a bit in your coffee life. You can’t fall into a coffee rut, its dangerous, really bad things can happen. I fell into a coffee rut once and it almost killed my coffee spirit. I started wearing one of these shirts around the house and making funny noises. I was in a bad place and I had to break free. How could I break out though?
Thank goodness for the peeps over at Peet’s Coffee. You see these clever dudes and dudettes realized this could happen from time to time and there had to be some kind of tool to help break out of the rut. Ladies and gentlemen, that tool is the absolutely amazing Find Your Taste tool. You simply click, tap, etc. on a couple of your favorite flavors, answer a few questions, and wiz, bang, poof, the coffee genie gives you the best Peet’s Coffee from your favorite flavors profile. The artificial intelligence engine inside the supercomputer at Peet’s Coffee gives you the cure to get out of your coffee rut almost instantly. This is cutting edge coffee technology folks and I used it the other day to break out of my rut.
So, what did Peet’s Coffee Find Your Taste tool compute? What did all those 1’s and 0’s floating inside the cyber abyss of silicon discover? The coffee review for January 22, 2020 is Peet’s Coffee Cafe Domingo Medium Roast
Peet’s Coffee Cafe Domingo is a medium- dark roast coffee sourced from beans from Latin America. The coffee roast is bit heavy for a medium roast but there’s a balance here that compensates for the heavy flavor and makes this coffee very enjoyable.
The coffee aroma is slightly heavy with hints of dark chocolate. Peet’s Coffee page says this has more of a toffee aroma, but I’m not getting any toffee on the nose. There is also a faint hint of some sweetness as well.
The coffee is medium bodied and a very solid overall taste. There is some subtle richness to the body but nothing over the top. It’s a pretty standard medium body effort and solid in terms of taste.
The coffee sweetness is subtle and I almost get a slight taste of bittersweet chocolate but the balance is such that it’s not too much bittersweet coffee flavor.
The coffee acidity is medium to medium high similar to what you would expect from a medium roast coffee.
The coffee mouthfeel is slightly rich but not heavy, the nose tricked me into thinking this was a bolder coffee, but it is more medium roast on the mouth . As the coffee cools a bit the rich coffee flavor faded and the finish was a little more flat, as I would expect from most coffee.
The coffee finish is clean and balanced and a little refined. It’s a good but not incredible (but I wasn’t expecting incredible).
Peet’s Coffee is known for it’s freshness and this coffee certainly didn’t disappoint in that regard. I need a savior to break me free of my rut and with the help of Peet’s Find Your Taste Tool and Peet’s Coffee Cafe Domingo I think this just may have been the answer to all my problems. This coffee is a great everyday go to option, and based on reading several coffee reviews online, I’ve read about many people using this coffee to blend with Peet’s Major Dickason’s Blend to create a unique coffee. Either way, grab your favorite Biscotti and pour a cup and enjoy!
Coffee can help keep your liver functioning optimally, being able to prevent the likelihood of cirrhosis. Drinking four or more cups per day can reduce the risk of cirrhosis by up to 80%.
7. Coffee Is Full Of Anti-Oxidants
Surprising as it may be, coffee is still one of the main sources of antioxidants in our diets, even more than what we receive from eating fruits and vegetables. This one reason alone is an excellent reason to drink coffee daily.
8. Coffee May Add Years To Your Life
Coffee can reduce the risk of several different diseases, and as studies have shown over a 20 year time period, reduced relative mortality rates in men and women by 20% and 26% respectively. These effects are especially pronounced with people that suffer from diabetes.
9. Coffee May Help Reduce The Risk Of Depression
A study conducted By Harvard University in 2011 (Lucas et al.) found that women who consumed 4 or more cups of coffee every day had a 20% reduced risk of developing depression, and a 53% decrease in suicide rates.
10. Coffee May Help Reduce The Risk Of Stroke
Though coffee may work to increase blood pressure, it does not affect heart health in a negative way. Blood pressure normally returns to baseline after a few days, but along with this is a slightly reduced incidence of stroke.
My Final Thoughts
The millions of people who love and drink coffee every day can celebrate, as not only do they get to consume their favorite cup of java, they also gain a lot of great benefits. Keep in mind that coffee has no calories, as long as you stay away from the sugar and creamer and you stay away from choosing high-calorie coffee drinks like Frappuccinos, which can quickly turn a good thing bad.
Climates and growing conditions must be just right to grow the best beans in the world. Many generations, through trial and error, have given coffee growers a good understanding of what a coffee bean needs to thrive, and taste incredible. Coffee needs warm weather year-round, generous rainfall, and abundant amounts of sunshine.
Where Is Coffee Grown?
The coffee tree is a tropical evergreen shrub and grows best in what’s known as the “Bean Belt” which is the ideal condition for coffee trees to thrive.
The region known as the Bean Belt extends to the north by the Tropic of Cancer and to the south by the Tropic of Capricorn, and from Hawaii to Indonesia, across the Americas, Africa, and Eurasia; or between latitudes 25 degrees North and 30 degrees South
There are more than 75 coffee-producing countries, each with their own characteristics that give them unique identities. Things like soil, rainfall, and sunlight affect the characteristics of the coffee beans; however, it’s the attitude that can make coffee truly unique. Coffee can grow at lower altitudes but it can over-ripen or receive too much moisture. The beans grown at higher elevations are the ones with just a bit more zing. For example, Arabica grows best at high altitudes in rich soil, while the heartier Robusta thrives at a higher temperature and can do well at lower altitudes.
Many of the top coffee-producing nations are well-known; however, some may come as a surprise. Around 70 countries produce coffee, with the overwhelming majority of the supply coming from developing countries like Brazil, Vietnam, Colombia, Indonesia, and Ethiopia.
Top 5 Coffee Producers in the World
Introduced in the early 18th century by French settlers, it became quite popular among Europeans. Brazil quickly became the world’s largest producer in 1840 and continued since. In 2014, Brazil produced 2.7 million metric tons of coffee, which was 30% of the world’s production. Over 300,000 plantations extend over more than 10,000 square miles of the Brazilian countryside. Brazilian production continues to be the driving force for the country’s economy.
Second, only to Brazil, being relatively new to the international coffee trade, Vietnam has quickly become one of the largest producers. In the 1980s, the Communist Party bet the future of the nation on coffee. Coffee production increased 20 to 30% each year in the 1990s, totally transforming the nation’s economy. In 2014, Vietnam produced 1.65 million metric tons of coffee.
The National Federation of Coffee Growers of Colombia created the fictional coffee farmer named Juan Valdez to help brand Colombia as one of the most famous coffee-producing nations. Colombia is renowned for its quality coffee and produced 696,000 metric tons in 2014. However, some think Colombian coffee production may have been negatively impacted by the fluctuations in climate. Temperatures and precipitation amounts have increased from 1980 to 2010. Yet, Colombia is still the highest-producing nation of arabica beans.
Not nearly as well-known, Indonesia’s perfect location and climate helped it become the second-largest exporter of robusta beans in the world. The Indonesian coffee industry is made up of 1.5 million independent small farms and only a few large-scale operations. It produced 411,000 metric tons of coffee in 2014.
Indonesia produces several types of highly sought-after specialty coffees. Kopi Luwak is harvested from the feces of Asian palm civets giving the beans a distinctive and unique flavor. This intensive process of collecting and harvesting the beans results in one of the most expensive coffee beans in the world.
According to legend, a goat herder took notice of the plant when he realized the energizing effect it had on his herd. And the rest was history as the very first arabica coffee plant was found there in the ninth century.
Coffee played an integral role in the development of the Ethiopian economy. Ethiopia’s 1.2 million smallholder farmers contribute over 90% of production, and an estimated 15 million Ethiopians depend on the industry for their living. As the largest coffee producer in Africa, it produced 390,000 metric tons of coffee in 2014.