Due to a mixed batch of conflicting emotions, my brewing and reviewing has been on a hiatus. An internal pendulum keeps me from sticking with something (or someone) for too long. Alas we have swayed back to the point in time in which I am drinking black coffee again. Last month I was buying this organic cold coffee that was mixed with almond milk, and occasionally I would decide I wanted dessert instead of coffee by going with the one that threw chocolate on top of that.
Now that everyone is caught up on my involvement in the world of coffee, lets get to this batch of beans.
This peculiar batch is named after the podcast of professional comedian Marc Maron. He’s a bit of a tortured soul, but the honesty and vulnerability he shows is what makes his show (and him as an individual) so popular. After seeing him perform at The Comedy Store on Wednesday night, I figure I would finally pull the trigger and buy a bag of beans and see what this was about.
I can remember browsing the bean profile on the coffee company’s website and first thinking this isn’t the type of roast I am accustomed to. But what the hell, you only die once, right?
To prepare myself, I had already decided I was going to brew the first batch in a Chemex; for a few reasons:
- I haven’t used this in a while
- Its one of the last ‘fancy’ brewing methods I still own
- What better way to counteract the intense, dark, oil-rich flavors than stripping it away with the thick filter
The brewing in written word looked something like this:
- Coffee: 50g
- Grind: Course
- 1st Pour: 100g
- Bloom: Clearly visible (a good sign the beans were fresh)
- Brew time: 4 minutes
- Total water: around 450g
Once I weighed out the beans, the first thing I noticed was, “Damn, these beans are dark. Dark and oily.” These beans could be in a soul glo commercial they’re so dark and oil-rich. While part of me wanted to put them away, and curl in a ball due to their emasculating profile, I ventured on.
I haven’t performed the pour-over method for some time and am happy to announce that I still got it. No fancy kettles or hot-water-makers here. Just a pot for water heating, and a measuring cup with a delicate hand is all it takes. Once the brewing process was over came time to taste.
I now know why the first words out of Maron’s mouth are, “Pow!” when taking a sip of this coffee. There is nothing subtle about this batch. From the start to the middle of the tongue, there are strong tastes of rum and dark cherries (but mostly rum.) One could pick out notes of dark chocolate at the end if you weren’t already incapacitated from the initial swig. When it comes to booze, I’m more of a whiskey guy myself, but still enjoy when someone can take two fields like coffee and alcohol and bring them together. The other day I had a gingerbread stout that gave me a whole new appreciation of stouts (you mean I get to have Christmas and beer in the same sitting? Sign me up.)
I would not recommend this type of coffee for the faint of heart. If you’re the type of person who sleep with a gun under your bed, this is the coffee for you. Next up will be the unfiltered, full-blown oily experience of a french press (god help me.)
In all seriousness, I can help but feel like I picked an inappropriate time to bring these beans into my life. I know he is going through some nicotine and caffeine withdrawal right now and the last thing someone needs to see or hear when battling addiction is how much they’re missing out on the thing they recently decided to kick. If you are reading this Marc, I hope all is well with you and you can overcome every fiber of your being telling you to get back on the sauce. One day at a time buddy, one day at a time. Now to stumble my way into the grocery store in the middle of this rain were having in southern California