Sampling Coffee From Darkwoods Coffee in Huddersfield
It probably seems as though I focus solely on food and alcohol for the blog, and I must confess to enjoying these two elements immensely, but we are rather partial to a good bean here at Beak H.Q as well! As I was pottering around the Fine Food Show North taking in all the incredible sights and smells I stumbled across some lovely peeps at the Dark Woods Coffee stand; we got chatting (as you do!) and they kindly gave me a couple of their blends to bring home to try.
DarkWoods Coffee are a relatively new company, having begun trading in 2014; they not only roast their own coffees by hand, they have a barista school and pop-up café in West Yorkshire too. Talking to them, you really feel the passion and drive the team have for delivering a great bean experience to as broad an audience as possible. I came away full of beans (no pun intended, although I thought that was a good one didn’t you?) and couldn’t wait to try their product.
Back at the nest, The Man Bird opened the pack of “Under Milk Wood” which is the recipient of a great taste award in 2016, ranking in the top 50 foods no less! I had a cheeky sniff before His Nibs popped the coffee machine on, and was rewarded with a gorgeously rounded aroma. This coffee is a smidge-more-than-medium blend and apparently melts to rich caramel in milk; we opted to try it initially black, and it had a fantastically well balanced taste in the mouth. No bitterness came through at all, so you can drink this without any additional sugar without any worries. Sometimes I find that I need a few grains of sugar to enjoy black coffees, but this wasn’t the case here.
For our second cup we heeded the tasting notes of Dark Woods and added milk to it. Honestly, you’d think you were drinking a totally different blend! It was wonderfully creamy and silky, just like caramel, but hadn’t lost any of its impact flavour-wise. I had a warmed croissant to go with the flat white version and the two partnered each other brilliantly - that’s my breakfasts sorted for the next few days!
It’s been a bit chilly outside, no thanks to the “beast from the east” and what better way to warm up than with a cup of proper coffee? Bourbon is another well-known way to warm up, so when you combine the two elements I figured that you’re onto a sure-fire winter warmer! Dark Woods Coffee produces a barrel aged “Bourbon Barrel Edition” coffee; made by Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Arabica beans aging and curing in Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey Oak barrels, before being gently hand roasted.
His Nibs opened the pack and we both inhaled deeply. I’m not an expert by any stretch of the imagination, but you really do get a good whiff of the Bourbon from the coffee; even better you can taste it too. I don’t mean you get the taste as if you’d put a glug of Bourbon into your coffee, more that you get a gentle hint of it which goes really well with the coffee I must say.
Like the Under Milk Wood blend, the Bourbon Barrel Edition is a medium roast coffee. As before, I didn’t need to add sugar and I only had this black I’m afraid; the idea of having milk with a bourbon component just didn’t float my boat. If you try it this way, let me know how it was please.