I learnt a couple of valuable lessons recently:
- If a store has “meat” in the name then you shouldn’t be surprised when their coffee beans taste like ass
- Even grinding your own beans, if the beans are bad enough to begin with then it’s possible the final coffee will remain undrinkable.
Here’s the calculation I used to trick myself into thinking this would be a good idea
Specialised Roasting House Beans: unmatched flavour, 500 yen for 100g.
Organic Beans from Kaldi: delicious, significantly better than Starbucks if you grind your own. 500 yen for 200g.
Beans from Hanamasa: if these are even drinkable then I’ll be happy: 500 yen for 400g.
Ok, saying the resulting cup of coffee tastes like “ass” is not really fair. Not really fair on asses, that is. This Hanamasa blend has a truly vile flavour, something like bitter mildew with an overpowering burnt rubber aroma. I tried it weak, I tried it strong, I tried making it with the Aeropress and as a regular drip coffee, and each time it just came up undrinkable.
And that wasn’t even the worst part. I got the jitters, which some in the primal/paleo community would put down to mycotoxins, and I’ve always thought the whole mold/mycotoxins thing was a bit of a scam until I drank the worst coffee in the world. Couldn’t focus on my work for the rest of the day after that (maybe add “3. don’t experiment on yourself in the office” to my lessons learnt above) and had trouble sleeping.
Then to top it all off I had trouble getting the stench out of my grinder, even thought about throwing it out #fail
For what it’s worth the blend was made from Indonesian, Brazilian and Vietnamese beans which raised no alarm bells for me at the time.
I know some of you will ignore my bean-buying suggestions here and actually go out there and buy these things just to see how bad they actually are. You have been warned…