Dish of the Day: Festive-flavoured coffee brews
I’m not going to get all bah, humbug about it, but it probably won’t surprise you to know that I’m not a fan of festive flavoured coffee brews. Why? Because it’s probably the quickest route to a very average or dull-quality coffee, over-flavoured with spices and nasty artificial additives. You can also be sure that the novelty of waking up to a heavily pimped-up brew during an already over-indulgent festive season, consisting of long Christmas lunches and a string of seasonal alcohol-fuelled get-togethers, is sure to wear-off after day one.
Furthermore, you don’t need a gimmicky festive coffee brew to set your Christmas taste buds alight. Elements of flavour that arise NATURALLY in good quality coffee absolutely chime in resonance with many of the gastronomic delights we like to enjoy at this time of year. True speciality coffees from Central America such as from Finca Emporium in Panama where roaster and producer have a direct relationship can lead to specialist finishing (honey process), where the beans are gently sundried whilst still enrobed with coffee berry fruit. This produces concentrated, intensely sweet fruity flavours, ideal to drink with cakes and puddings rich with candied fruits, such as mince pies and Christmas puddings.
With the Roastery closing for a full week over the festive season, you’ll find me in the kitchen kneading and baking bread. On my list will be sweet breakfast breads, which can be washed down deliciously with a gentle nutty and sweet Brazilian coffee from Fazenda Ambiental Fortaleza, known for hints of vanilla, maple syrup, and clarified butter.
So with these suggestions, give your chemistry set a break and, instead, experiment with some really good single origin brews all the way from Emporium Panama, Belo Horizonte El Salvador; they’ll go down a treat alongside your festive nibbles. As for my top tip, whilst the family are settling down to watch Her Majesty, I’ll be tucked away with a cafetiere of Sumatra Aceh – a full bodied and smooth coffee with dark chocolate and dark fruit/plummy notes and a hint of peaty smokiness – which I’ll be complementing perfectly with an Islay single malt whiskey, try it for yourself! Really, what more could a chap want, a great cup of coffee AND my favourite tipple – each perfect in their own right.
Jeremy Torz is Co-Founder of Union Hand-Roasted Coffee and a self confessed Coffee Addict
Follow Jeremy at @unionroastedTagged in: christmas coffee, coffee
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