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Colombian Supremo

August 22, 2006
Bob Yellin

This coffee was roasted, cupped blind, and rested for about 8 hours prior to formal cupping. Then it was rested a minimum of 2 more days prior to brewing and pulling espresso shots. For more information on my sample roaster and method, see our reference page.

These beans, from Coffee Bean Direct, are one of 12 varieties of green coffee that this central New Jersey roaster is currently selling in response to the growing home roaster market. They say that they are a "dedicated gourmet coffee roaster" and are set apart by the fact that they price their coffee (and tea) products at wholesale levels regardless of quantity and destination.

No other information is available about these particular beans other than the fact that they are Colombian Supremo. The system for grading Colombian coffee is at best, confusing. Some consider the Supremo grade to be the highest quality, with Excelso next. Sometimes Excelso is a blend of Supremo and Extra and sometimes the only difference between the two is the screen size with Supremo screened out at 17/18. Therefore evaluating the quality in the cup is all the more important because there are Excelsos that are higher quality than some Supremos.

This coffee is a very passable example of a quality Supremo, not a competition winning coffee but ideal perhaps, as an all-around "house coffee" work horse. It has medium body, snappy acidity and rich, clean flavors of malt/caramel and stone fruit. At a relatively light roast level (city or city+) it is quite fruity and has slight winy tones reminiscent of Kenyan coffee.

I roasted some a bit darker and tried a SO straight espresso shot but the acidity, even at that roast level, was out of balance, and a cappuccino, though dumbing down the acidity somewhat, was still a bit too sour for my taste. But as a brewed coffee, roasted at a lighter level it made a very enjoyable classic Colombian cup.

Dry fragrance: 4.1
Wet Aroma: 4.2
Flavor: 7.2
Finish: 7.2
Acidity: 7.9
Body: 7.2
TOTAL (subtotal + 50): 87.8

  • Lighter Roasts: Recommended. At this level the cup is classic Colombian.
  • Darker Roasts: At Full City, fruit disappears but tart acidity doesn't - not recommended.
  • As Espresso: This is not an espresso bean.


UPDATED: August 23, 2006