COFFEE ROASTED FRESH DAILY
Green Beanery has a mission, one that extends beyond the commercial (not that we aren’t proud to have become Canada's largest online retailer of coffee and coffee equipment, offering more varieties of coffee beans than any other retailer in the world and selling more coffee paraphernalia than any other Canadian retailer).
Green Beanery aims to reinvent the coffee shop of old. Until the 1920s, when big business began to take over the coffee industry, all coffee shops roasted their own. Green Beanery is helping to spur a renaissance in local roasting by supplying hundreds of micro-roasters and restaurants, and leading by example by roasting all of our own coffee, too, at our café-roastery at 565 Bloor St West in Toronto’s Annex district.
The renaissance includes returning coffee shops to the service of the community, providing a place to sip small luxuries in an atmosphere large with comforts for both mind and palate. You won’t find Wi-Fi in our café ̶ our patrons place a premium on conversations and conviviality.
The renaissance also includes reviving the coffee shop as change agent. Coffee shops of old were known for great innovations and passionate discourse ̶ this is where Lloyd’s of London launched the insurance industry, and where social revolutions were born. In that spirit, Green Beanery hosts Grounds for Thought, a discussion series held the last Tuesday of every month, for those who relish having their intellect provoked and entertained. Details of our next presentation can be found below. Fittingly, Green Beanery is owned by Probe International, a Canadian charity known for out-of-the-box thinking, whose directors have included many of Canada’s most celebrated minds, among them Jane Jacobs, David Suzuki, Margaret Laurence and Thomas Berger.
About the bean
We're welcoming a new coffee to our selection. The Brazil Natural comes to us from a very large farm in the Cerrado region of the world's most famous coffee-producing country, and, as its name makes clear: this bean was dried naturally. The natural method of drying coffee is an ancient practice that involves leaving harvested beans to dry under the sun. Simple!
This process has been likened to red wine by some connoisseurs with a renewed interest in the natural method. Like red wine, more of the skin and the fruit is absorbed. Because the seed of the coffee cherry is imbued with more of the coffee fruit's sugars and nutrients, the final result can be flavour magic. You will sometimes hear the term "wild in the cup" associated with naturally processed coffees. This method provides more in the way of flavour brilliance as well as flavour quirks. Its inconsistencies is one of the reasons why the wet method of washing the coffee seed off the fruit became the preferred process of the two. But never discount the merits of risk, coffee lovers. And this pick pays off.
A sweet softie with a thick body. Our favourite Brazilian bean in stock right now alongside the Brazil Planalto.
Grown at a low altitude of only 800m on a large farm and harvested mechanically. These indicators do not suggest the favourable outcome a bean cultivated at a higher elevation on a smaller farm with hand pickers does but this natural Brazilian is a total pleaser. In a country without the growing altitudes of more elevated coffee-producing regions, the natural process can accomplish more fruitiness, more flavour, more complexity.
Our taste test: Brewed in a French press at a City roast profile, we enjoyed a soft, velvety body reminiscent of white chocolate, a medium brightness (acidity), with a caramel underlay and some fruity flair. A pour over brew enhances these fruit notes. A most enjoyable, sweet aftertaste which is typical of the natural drying process.
For those of us who prefer a darker roast, the Brazil Natural brewed in a French press at a Vienna roast profile made a memorable impression. The deeper richness did not overwhelm or undermine the cup's balance. Great espresso potential here.
Roast Recommendation: To preference. For an explanation of our different roasts, see here: http://greenbeanery.ca/pages/roasting-chart.
About the bean
Do you like a medium to dark roast? Do you like espresso? Do you like a brew rich in flavour and bold in body? Yes? Then our new batch of Colombian Supremo SC 17/18 is for you! These beans are sourced from the central northwest of Colombia in the Antioquia region, the country's largest coffee producing region. Coffee here is mountain-grown by small farmers and large estates. The high altitude slows the pace of ripening and the result is a classic Colombian - rich, full bodied, and a toasted chocolate taste that cools to a cold brew perfection.
No surprises and that's OK because this coffee is super good. And the crema! Go espresso, go cold brew and get happy.
City roast, medium-fine grind, brewed in a Hario V60 pour over (30g of coffee to 500ml of water)
This combination produced a silky body and a sweet taste with a light acidity. Pleasant indeed with a smoky finish.
Vienna roast, medium grind, brewed in a French press (40g of coffee to 500ml of water)
Oh, yeah! We upped the ratio of coffee to enhance the body, which at this level was syrupy strong with a potent chocolate, almost brownie flavour. When the cup cooled, the flavour balance evened out, making this one a great pick for cold brew.
Our only regret? We didn't pull an espresso shot. And that's where this bean shines.
Roast recommendation: Medium to dark. Oh, Vienna! You were nice. For an explanation of our different roasts, see here: http://greenbeanery.ca/pages/roasting-chart.
About the bean
We've become awfully fond of honey-processed coffee. A process championed by Costa Rica after an earthquake in the seismically active region caused a severe water shortage. The honey method of processing coffee beans uses less water than that of washed coffees - some of the sticky (honey-like) mucilage beneath the peel of the coffee cherry remains during the drying process instead of being washed off. This effects the level of sweetness in the cup. Exposure to light during the drying period also impacts the end result, with some honeyed coffees exposed to more and some less, which led Costa Rican farmers to create a spectrum of colour to indicate the level of exposure: yellow honey beans enjoy their time in the sun the most, red honey somewhat less and black honey beans the least (the latter requires more labour to tend to during its drying period of typically 1-2 weeks).
Of these types of honeys, we have yet to try the black honey variety (considered the most rich and complex). What we have tried (yellow and red), we have loved. The cup is sweet but typically well-balanced and clean with lovely flavour notes. It's a different coffee experience and one we look forward to with every new batch of honey coffee we receive.
The best of Costa Rica with a golden twist.
These honey-processed beans are the yellow honey variety (the most exposed to light).
American roast profile / Cupping
We cupped our Costa Rican FTO honey-processed beans to explore the depth of the coffee. We noted a sweet, slightly floral fragrance. The cup was lightly bright, infused with notes of honey cane sugar and a pronounced nut taste (hazelnut and creamy cashew). Overall, a soft-bodied, smooth cup, very well-balanced with a lingering aftertaste of nut and dark chocolate.
American roast profile / Hario V60 pour over brew
The fragrance was a yellow fruit (apricot, peach) and honeysuckle/jasmine delight. Other notes in the underlay rounded out the cup (milk chocolate, nut and even black tea). At this profile, we savoured a most wonderful cup that was nicely bright with a pleasant tea-like body and a hazelnut aftertaste. Could it get any better?
City roast profile / French press brew
It got better! We sat a long time here enjoying a more subdued acidity and a pronounced sweetness (succulent pear). Again, the nutty notes emerged further amplified. No bitterness, a light-medium body, well balanced. As the coffee cooled, the nut flavour claimed the cup entirely.
This is one gorgeous coffee. It should be enjoyed at a light-medium roast (City is perfect) and skip the additives which almost always bury a coffee's personality. This is a pick to sit with, discover, and sip on all day; completely in sync with the mood of summer.
For an explanation of our different roasts, see here: http://greenbeanery.ca/pages/roasting-chart.View full product details
About the bean
Ah! We miss the summer, already. But at least we've got this vitamin of a coffee to make us feel summery fine.
When we're asked for recommendations for a good, classic coffee or a morning brew or a coffee that will suit most tastes, Costa Rica is the first suggestion out of our mouths. Why? Just like the consistent temperature of the country's climate (which only varies about ten degrees throughout the year), coffee from Costa Rica is reliably good: grown in ideal conditions at high altitude, hand-picked and processed with care - a law passed in 1989 actually prohibits the planting of low-quality beans in Costa Rica, making it illegal to produce any other type of coffee than Arabica. Although, some growing regions around the globe have been making great strides in Robusta coffee quality (but that's another bean story).
As per the name, this Costa Rican Tarrazu is from the country's oh-so-famous Tarrazu region, considered the best of the best from this sandy, sun-soaked coffee paradise. Expect a very well-balanced cup with a smooth body and just the right amount of sweetness.
Paradise in a cup.
Category: Single Origin
Process: Washed and sun dried
Altitude: 1,400-1,700 masl.
Brand: La Pastora
Botanical variety: Caturra and Catuai
Mill: Coope Tarrazú R.L.
We went from light to dark because we're relentlessly curious. An American roast brewed in a Hario V60 pour over gave us a coffee to wake up with: great balance, nice body and notes of apricot and peanut for an aromatic, tasty cup. A Full City roast brewed using the same method produced a flavorful mix of cocoa and nut for a classic Costa Rican (aromatically intense and sweet) - another morning hit. A City roast profile brewed in a French press gave us chocolate notes, good body and sweetness. To finish, we tried the Full City roast as a latte and the result was most enjoyable - a nutty cocoa with a caramel finish. Something about the approach of fall has turned us into latte lovers lately.
Consider this bean for cold brews (while there's still time to chill). The aftertaste should rock. Experiment by adding the cold brew to Perrier (or similar) over ice with a splash of milk (a refreshing and yum combination). This bean should also delight for baking and recipes that call for a teaspoon or two of coffee. Use for caffeinated syrups drizzled over desserts.
Roast recommendation: American to Full City+. Light for a complex fruit-nut flavour. Darker for a more intense coffee hit. For an explanation of our different roasts, see here: http://greenbeanery.ca/pages/roasting-chart.
About the beans
It's the most wonderful time of the year. For us, that's any time of the year we're able to share a new coffee experience with you. And it's a particular pleasure when a new coffee coincides with an occasion to celebrate.
This holiday season, we're introducing our new in-house blend Dolce. As the name suggests, this coffee is a sweet affair - complex and flavorful and perfect paired with food, especially dessert!
Dolce is our end-of-year gift to you. Enjoy.
Life is sweet when the coffee is a treat!
Like all of our in-house recipes, the makings of Dolce must remain a secret. We can tell you that this blend is made up of three different coffees and three of our very best offerings, at that. Inspired by a love of coffee that is intrinsically sweet, Dolce was created - by one of our in-house roasters Adam Hu - to combine his love of sweet with a more complex and full flavored profile. The result is the sort of coffee that transforms a good moment to great. Get the day going with Dolce in the morning or linger over Dolce in the evening after dessert, or both!
At an American roast profile brewed as a pour over, Dolce produced an elegant cup with flavour notes ranging from golden raisin to meringue - it made us think of the sweet crunchy centre of the latter in the most delicious way. A tea-like body packed with flavour.
At a Full city roast profile brewed in a French press, Dolce gave us a medium body and smooth finish, nicely aromatic.
Our sweet spot for this sweet brew was the City roast profile brewed in a pour over. Hmm. A hint of floral, that complexity we're always after and strength of flavour. Your palate will sing.
Roast recommendation: We loved the City but this blend is flexible. For an explanation of our different roasts, see here: http://greenbeanery.ca/pages/roasting-chart.
About the bean
We debuted this fabulous coffee at the beginning of spring and we're thrilled to celebrate the move into fall with another crop of this instant classic.
The Kochere is a perfect coffee pairing for fall with its jammy fruit flavours and pleasant, well-balanced brightness. This new batch lives up to the glory of its spring introduction: go get, coffee lovers!
A new favourite.
Category: Single Origin
Region: Kochere micro-region, Southern Ethiopia
Process: Selectively hand-picked and washed
Altitude: 1,700-2,200 masl.
Harvest: October onwards
Score: 85.5 (out of 100 points; over 85 considered excellent)
This is a light to medium-light dream. As an American roast profile brewed in a Hario V60 (pour over), we enjoyed a wonderfully bright cup buoyed with an orange marmalade tartness, offset with a honey softness. Notes of orange zest and strawberry gave this deliciously flavorful brew a lovely aftertaste. Smooth to taste with a light-medium body. A perfect coffee to start the day on - happy in, happy out.
Brewed in a French press as a City roast, the Kochere's vibrant sweetness at this profile popped. Notes of apricot and white chocolate produced a more mellow cup with a velvet finish. Going darker to Full City, the Kochere took on a smokey, molasses flavour - we preferred lighter. As a Full City roast profile made into a latte, the result was delightful: candied notes of fruit and chocolate, sweet and winning.
Roast recommendation: Stay below a Full City profile and reap the rewards. Go darker for specialty drinks like lattes. For an explanation of our different roasts, see here: http://greenbeanery.ca/pages/roasting-chart.
About the bean
A number of the major coffee-growing countries we source from may not know how great their product is. When the "good stuff" is exported elsewhere, local coffee can be a sub-par experience, roasted dark to hide defects and mixed with filler to increase volume. Happily, that isn't the case with Ethiopia, which consumes half of its annual coffee production and boasts a thriving domestic coffee culture (Google for examples of an Ethiopian coffee ceremony). The birthplace of coffee according to legend, Ethiopia is where Coffea arabica originated, which is said to be the first species of coffee ever cultivated; it remains the dominant species and accounts for more than 60 percent of the world's commercial coffee production. Given its genetic wealth and history, Ethiopia is a coffee region like none other and an unparalleled paradise of coffee flavour.
Sun, sun, sun, sun ... For coffee lovers, Yirgacheffe is the luminous summit of coffee gaga. Light, bright, clean and balanced, this Yirgacheffe pick is also decently priced.
American roast profile brewed in a Hario V60 pour over: Yirgacheffe is known for a sweet, tea-like taste songed with notes of fruit and berry. Our sampling produced a sweet cup with a uniquely pleasant flavour of honey and lemon rind. The aroma was potent yet even and the aftertaste lifted by a caramel softness. At an American roast profile, the acidity is high but the brightness adds a complexity and juiciness that many enjoy. A star of a bean.
Vienna roast profile brewed in a French Press: The unique characteristics dimmed at a darker roast profile (and Vienna is quite dark). The body is great here, though, and the sweet notes continued, albeit without the fruitiness of the American cup. The Vienna sample made us wish we had tested this as an espresso - the balance and flavour would translate to an excellent shot.
Roast recommendation: Typically, light to medium. For an explanation of our different roasts, see here: http://greenbeanery.ca/pages/roasting-chart.
About the bean
Robusta coffee from India is notable for several reasons. The production of Robusta in India is almost double that of Arabica, and while Robusta is generally considered the poor relation of the former, in India the same care applied to the cultivation, harvest and processing of Arabica coffee is applied to Robusta. Both natural/dry-processed Robusta and Arabica coffees in India are known as Cherry (not to be confused with the cherry fruit on the coffee tree!). Cherry AA indicates the highest grade of these particular beans.
These beans are perfect for creating your own espresso blend or for coffee enthusiasts looking for a strong joe but one that is easy to digest (low in acidity). Did we say the price point is terrific? It is. Need some extra jam to get through the day (and night)? The caffeine in Robusta is double that of Arabica and that means double the antioxidant, health benefits of caffeine goodness as well. Robusta is the Hercules of coffee, and at full strength, it might even grow your hair!
Our taste test: We went for a Full City roast profile brewed in a French press and the result was kapow! This is an intense bean with a heavy body, almost zero acidity, a woodsy smoke flavour with a lingering burnt chocolate (caramel) aftertaste. It was everything we expected from a Robusta. We did try a light roast but that was a waste. Dark is where this bean shines.
Roast Recommendation: Definitely dark - medium-dark to dark to darker still. For an explanation of our different roasts, see here: http://greenbeanery.ca/pages/roasting-chart.
About the bean
Our new batch of Nicaragua FTO makes us think of balmy nights and basking in the pause of the season. This is a smooth, creamy cup, pleasant and sweet (even a bit nutty), with a chocolate finish (that ranges from caramel to baker's chocolate depending on the roast). A fine summer companion, easy to sit with, and that's what these slow-down days are calling us to do.
Nicaragua coffee is known for quality and, increasingly, variety of flavour. Most of the country's offerings are shade grown and cultivated at high altitudes. The world's largest coffee beans (elephant beans) are produced here. Typically, beans from this region are similar in character to other Central Americans but Nicaraguans are the mild ones of the bunch.
Summer fine. Deep dive into this coffee pause.
Region: San Juan del Rio Coco, Madriz
Supplier: Procafe RL Cooperative (approx. 90 small-holder farmers)
Process: Sun dried, washed Arabica
Certification: Fair Trade, Organic, Smithsonian Bird Friendly (Bird friendly, organic, shade-grown coffee supports bird conservation, a healthy environment and the livelihood of small-scale farm owners).
Process: Sun and mechanically dried
Altitude: 900 - 1,900 masl.
SHG: Strictly high-grown
EP: European Process (Indicates the coffee has undergone rigorous sorting - usually by hand to ensure defective beans and foreign material have been removed).
Full City roast profile brewed in a French Press: This is the sweet spot. The bean's brightness is balanced by a pronounced sweetness and a smooth, round body; a most enjoyable brew. Opt for a pour over brew for more expression or a plunge-press for amped-up body. A lighter roast (City) gave us a muted sweetness (stone fruit, roasted chestnut) and a medium to high acidity; the nutty flavour really developed on the cool-down.
Embrace the darkness - this is a bean suited to a Vienna roast, espresso and for chillin' (cold-brew style). And that's what we did!
Cold Brew (Full City roast, coarse ground) brewed in a Bodum Bean Cold Brew Ice Coffee Maker: Using a 1 to 4 coffee-water ratio, we let this one sit overnight and supped our chill Nicaraguan for breakfast. What a delight! At this temperature, we have a more fruity cup (watermelon, a touch of cucumber) with a splash of nut. This is just the ticket for a hot summer night; maybe even add a dash of cream or milk. So nice.
Roast recommendation: The dark side. For an explanation of our different roasts, see here: http://greenbeanery.ca/pages/roasting-chart.
About the bean
Our new batch of PNG comes from Papua New Guinea's renowned Sigri Estate in the country's mountainous western highlands. At Sigri, Arabica coffee is hand-picked and rigorously sorted and resorted to ensure uniformity. Fermented over a period of three days and washed every 24 hours, the Sigri care regime produces one of the cleanest Indonesian coffees around. The result in the cup is a unique complexity that is most delicious. Papua New Guinea, unlike its neighbours, doesn't use the semi-wet method (aka Indonesia's famed giling basah technique which skips lengthy drying to arrive at market with a whopping 50% moisture content). As a result, PNG coffees are brighter, cleaner and not as earthy as other coffees from this region and tend to be creamy, juicy and buttery in character.
Of note: Arabica seeds from Jamaica Blue Mountain were introduced to Papua New Guinea's western highlands in the late 1930s, where the bulk of coffee is produced. Most of the trees on the island were originally grown from Blue Mountain Coffee beans and PNG coffees can be reminiscent of JBM offerings. The Sigri Estate is recognized internationally as a gourmet coffee producer.
PNG coffee is one of our most popular Daily Roast options.
Region: Sigri and nearby farms in the Waghi Valley and Mount Hagen
Process: Washed; sun dried on raised beds as well as rolls (aka "sails") spread over the ground
Varieties: Arusha, Bourbon, Carribean Blue, Catimor, Mundo Novo, Typica
Altitude: 1,600 masl.
Harvest: Late spring to mid-summer
Cupping Score: 85.70 (a score of 80 points or above on a 100-point scale is graded "specialty" coffee)