When I come across a new coffee shop in person or a roasting company online, my eyes often search for the typical things such as company mission, bean origin locations, and variety of roasts. However, when I discovered Brandywine Coffee Roasting, I was immediately taken by their branding before anything else. Brandywine is out of Wilmington, DE and (in their own words) is the “portal to coffee, art, and magic.” I mean, how could anyone deny sampling coffee that goes hand in hand with art and magic?
I am impressed with the wide selection of not only coffee but coffee collections. This includes but is not limited to comfy collection, coffee magic for a cause, and mellow coffee magic. While some companies boast having “something for everyone,” Brandywine shows that they really do!
For the purpose of this review, I tasted an espresso blend called Galactic Standard and a single origin from Ethiopia.
My coffee tasting assistant, James, joined me again! He was the first to open the bag and shared his snap judgment, “It reminds me of grocery shopping with my parents when I was a kid. At the end of the coffee aisle there was a big bean grinder and I remember that it always smelled so good.”
I thought that it was particularly interesting that this specific blend had conjured that memory, and also I found it interesting because I remember hating the smell of coffee as a kid! I actually didn’t enjoy the smell and taste of coffee until I started drinking it ritually in Costa Rica when I was 20 years old.
We brewed the espresso using the Nanopresso and a clear glass so we could witness the quality of the color and texture. The espresso was light chocolate brown and, once again, the Nanopresso delivered a fine crema on the top.
I tasted the espresso first. I noted that it seemed earthy yet bright, and that there was a certain complex sweetness. I prefer espresso that is easy drinking, versus the dark espresso you may take down in a couple of sips or mix heavily with milk, so it was ideal for my preference. James tried the espresso and noted the sweetness but also got a sense of fruit, flower, and toasted almond.
In their words:
“Galactic Standard is a universally awesome espresso blend that will produce shots of stardust space magic in your cup! Tasting like a mixed berry pie with a really syrupy body, this espresso can stand on its own or take all of your milk drinks to another galaxy!”
They also offer that the tasting notes are:
mixed berries, bright Citrus, chocolate velvety syrup
Next up, the single origin coffee!
Ethiopia Damo Shanta Golba Washed
I decided to try something different this time around and instead of using one of our Wacaco products to prepare hot coffee or espresso, I went for cold brew! If you didn’t already know, the Pipamoka is an excellent tool to make not only fresh vacuum brewed hot coffee but also cold brew! Though you can make it in as little as 1 - 2 hours, I wanted to let it sit overnight so it was already available for me first thing in the morning!
I opened the bag of beans and softly inhaled. There was a distinct difference between the smell of the single origin in comparison to the espresso blend. I experienced more of a top note fragrance for this one. Next, I ground the beans and prepped the Pipamoka, leaving it to sit overnight.
Since I live in a house where coffee is freshly brewed every morning, it felt novel to wake up with the coffee already prepared. I removed the Pipamoka’s water chamber from the mug and spit the coffee into two small glasses for James and me to taste.
Straight away, James noticed a citrusy edge to the cold brew. He said how pleasant this was, as brewers will often incorporate roasts that are dark and chocolatey into their cold brew. I agreed with the notes of citrus and guessed that we could be tasting some rose.
We finally took a look at the back of the bag to find out how Brandywine describes this delicious single origin brew and it said: nectarine, jasmine, key lime. This compilation of flavors cold brewed makes for a spectacular summer coffee experience. I recommend trying this coffee with the cold brew process using the Pipamoka. Learn how here!
This Ethiopia washed coffee was such a hit that it sold out by the time I went to publish this article! Sightsee Shop + Coffee in Charleston, SC currently has it in stock for purchase, as well as Simple Merchant Coffee in Newport, RI. Alternatively, I am linking a newer washed Kenya right here. Enjoy!