As the head roaster, being asked to write about one coffee in particular can be a difficult thing for me to do. Especially, when you consider the wide variety of coffees that we offer at O’Henry’s. Granted, I have the perk of being able to drink any coffee I desire at a moment’s notice while working at the office, it is rare that I indulge in more than 3 cups a day at most. If given a choice of my personal favorites to pick I have 5 coffees that top the list without question. Of those 5 coffees, I would like to talk about my personal favorite Java Private Estate.
I have long appreciated the history behind the cup of coffee called Java. It is not only synonymous with a regular cup of Joe, but also represents one of the many volcanic islands in the Indonesian Archipelago. Coffee was first cultivated in the lowlands of the island of Java in the late 1600’s and was widely traded by the early 1700’s. It is a key component in the famous blend of Mocha Java. We are one of the few roasters in the country who still do it the traditional way by blending 50% each of Yemen Mocca Mattari and Java Private Estate. In the late 1800’s coffee farming was moved into the higher elevations of Java to escape the rust prone lowland areas. When this move took place it brought the coffee farming closer to the highly prized volcanic soil conditions of Eastern Java. Not only that, it took the coffee to higher elevation which allows the coffee cherry to mature at a more optimal rate ensuring the coffee produced is of a higher quality and better concentration than the lower grown coffees. All of the Java coffees we purchase are grown in the far Eastern edge of the island of Java in what is called the Ijen Plateau not too far from the majestic Raung Gunung Volcano. This particular area is well known for its unusual class of volcanoes called stratovolcanoes.
Enough talk of volcanoes right, let’s get to the coffee ? All Java coffees are wet-processed which gives them a cleaner tasting coffee and often brighter acidity unlike their other Indonesian cousins Sumatra and Celebes. In the cup you will find a distinctive taste of chocolate, spice, lavender and dried cherry. I find the sweetness, depth and perfume- like aroma of this coffee beckons me to come back day after day. I would be surprised if you didn’t agree, take a journey to the other side of the globe and find out for yourself. You won’t regret it!