My decaffeinated coffee binge continues this week with my review of Crema Coffee Roasters' (Nashville, TN) Decaf La Laguna.
The Decaf La Laguna is yet another coffee I received through my MistoBox coffee subscription, and I must say, this coffee had some complexity I definitely wasn't expecting. Fudge notes were prevalent in the aroma, while the actual flavors of the coffee varied across brew methods hitting many ends on the SCAA flavor wheel.
About Crema Coffee Roasters
Cream Coffee Roasters is a Tennessee-based Specialty Coffee roaster that got its start in 2007. Founders Rachel and Ben built their first (and currently, only) café from the ground up, and their passion for coffee is palpable when you read their story.
I've yet to make it out to Tennessee myself, but when I do, I'll be sure to make Crema one of my first stops.
General Notes & Observations
Country of Origin: Colombia
Variety: Caturra, Colombia, Castillo
Processing method: Ethyl-acetate decaffeination
Growing altitude: 1400-1800 masl
Aroma: Dark chocolate
Roaster tasting notes: honey, tangerine, dark chocolate
Coffee Concierge tasting notes: floral, fruity, earthy, complex
If you’re new here, you can check out how I rate whole bean coffee here.
The Decaf La Laguna had strong acidity despite its darker roast. If anything, the coffee had a tangerine acidity that worked pretty nicely with the overall flavor profile.
Very quiet aftertaste, not much to note here.
Loved this coffee's aroma, especially in its whole bean form. Fudgey dark chocolate before it's brewed, and more of a honey aroma once brewed.
I found that the balance was frequently thrown off by the strong acidity. Still, it had a wide spectrum of flavors that complemented each other nicely, so the balance was more contingent on the brew specs than the coffee itself.
The body was thin, the coffee clean. I don't imagine this would do as well for immersion or espresso brew methods, though I didn't try either.
The Decaf La Laguna is actually a very complex coffee despite my inability to pinpoint specific flavor notes. Generally speaking however, the coffee had floral, fruit, chocolate, and earth notes. That's a pretty wide spectrum, and this was the highlight of this coffee in my opinion.
From a flavor perspective, the Decaf La Laguna didn't strike me as a very memorable coffee, despite its complexity. The thing is, nothing really stood out as an obvious or delicious flavor. Fortunately, there is flavor, you're just going to have to dig really deep to describe it if you're someone like me.
Despite the stubborn acidity, I never really struggled to get something good out of the Decaf La Laguna. Every cup was enjoyable, even if the coffee didn't fully meet my taste preferences.
The potential was there when brewed as drip, but I think the strong acidity detracted from the overall sweetness.
About half of the brew methods I used gave me solid results, the other half were pretty average. And, as I mentioned earlier, I don't expect that this would make for really good coffee when brewed as French Press or espresso. Of course, this is just speculation.
If you're not drinking decaf Specialty Coffee yet, what are you waiting for?
EA decaffeination has proven to be a solid processing method for coffee lovers who need to tone down their caffeine intake. The Decaf La Laguna from Crema is yet another example of a decaf coffee that is putting the stigma to rest.
In this case, La Laguna packs a whole bunch of complexity despite its strong acidic notes. It's also a clean coffee for those who prefer drip methods. In my experience, it brewed best as a Chemex and Kalita Wave.
If you're looking for full-bodied chocolate flavor that is reminiscent of the aroma however, you'll probably be disappointed. Ceremony Coffee's Decaf Espresso Blend is currently what I'd recommend for those who are looking for coffee that has more body and rich chocolate flavor.
Still, a solid decaf option from Crema Coffee Roasters. I look forward to trying more of their coffee.