Sumatra, an island of Indonesia, is the largest producer of Indonesian coffee. The coffees from Sumatra are bold in character, and hold up particularly well in the roasting process. That’s why so many of the dark roast options at Armeno Coffee Roasters are coffees from Sumatra. Other coffees that have excellent flavor at a Full City roast, quickly break down as the roast progresses to leave you with that burnt taste that, unfortunately, is often mistaken for sophisticated coffee flavor.

Photo by Sue Teplansky

At Armeno, we prefer to taste the bean and not the burn, and we take care to apply the darker roast to coffees that hold their flavor through the process. Sumatra Takengon, a fair trade organic coffee from the Gayo region of Indonesia is one of these coffees, and Armeno offers the coffee in three distinctive roasts: Full City, Viennese, and French Roast. Each of these three roasting stages represents a mere 30 seconds of additional roasting time, but the effect on coffee flavor is significant.

This is where coffee roasting blends art with chemistry. The process of roasting coffee beans first drives the moisture from the bean. As the structure of the bean begins to break down and the oils begin to migrate outward, an audible “crack” may be heard. In the large Armeno coffee roaster, this almost sounds like popping corn. The bean has begun to turn a light brown at this point, and the aroma of roasted coffee floats on the air. As the bean darkens, and the sugars caramelize, you reach the stage known as full city roast. At this stage, the Armeno Sumatra Takengon coffee produces a cup with a rich and sweet flavor.

As the coffee bean continues to roast, the breakdown of the bean continues and you hear a second “crack” indicative of the Viennese roast. For many coffees, the characteristics of the roast begin to eclipse the flavor of the bean, but Armeno Sumatra Takengon holds up particularly well. The caramelized sugars maintain the sweetness of the cup, but the acidity has begun to break down, along with the fruity characteristics of the coffee. If you enjoy a darker flavor, but aren’t a fan of French Roast, the Sumatra Tankengon Viennese may be for you.

As the coffee darkens, the sugars burn away and the oils are pushed further out of the bean, creating an oily sheen. The coffee takes on a smokey characteristic. This is the French Roast. The trick for the coffee roaster is to halt the process while the flavor of the bean remains. This requires both a coffee roasting artist (Armeno coffee roaster, John Parks), and a coffee bean with strong character (in this case, Sumatra Takengon Fair Trade Organic). Otherwise, all you are left with is the burn. Armeno Sumatra Takengon French Roast delivers a dark, bold flavor that maintains the integrity of the coffee bean while delivering the darker coffee flavor preferred by many coffee drinkers.

Armeno offers one pound and half-pound bags of each of these roasts. Why not plan your own side by side comparison? Post your impressions on our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/armenocoffeeroasters.

Armeno Diner Mug

Enjoy!

Aerobie Aeropress

Aerobie AeroPress from Armeno Coffee Roasters

July brings the hottest weather for New England, and this July has been the hottest in a very long time. To help you beat the heat, we thought we’d share Armeno Coffee roaster, John Parks’, recipe for iced coffee.

John starts with the Aerobie AeroPress.  It makes a concentrated coffee that is sweet and strong.  Choose your favorite Armeno coffee.  The Mocha Java or Sumatra Fair Trade Viennese makes a great iced coffee.  The grind should be finer than paper but not as fine as espresso.  Fill a pint glass with ice and put two to three scoops in the AeroPress.  Add 175 degree water, stir about ten seconds and then push down the plunger.  Add milk or cold water to fill the glass and enjoy.

Armeno coffee fans have been posting their own cool drink ideas on our Facebook page. Click here to read these cool ideas.

If you have been waiting patiently for Mocha Java Decaf from Armeno Coffee Roasters, your patience is rewarded and freshly roasted coffee beans await. With the long 4th of July holiday weekend ahead, why not stop by today and pick up a bag?

Armeno Decaf Mocha Java Blend is a perfectly balanced combination of Ethiopian Mocha Decaf and Sumatra Decaf. As with all of our decaffeinated coffees, the beans are gently decaffeinated without chemicals to maintain their unique flavor and body.

Freshly Roasted coffee beans from Armeno Coffee Roasters

Ethiopian Mocha is the “Mocha” in the Mocha Java blend. The Mocha Java Blend has always been a favorite of Armeno coffee fans, and that includes our decaf drinkers as well. We blend the fruity Decaf Ethiopian Mocha with the sweeter Decaf Sumatra in a 40:60 ratio for a perfectly balanced Mocha Java Decaf with a naturally chocolaty flavor and a smooth creamy finish.

Armeno Coffee Roasters will be open 9am – 5pm Thursday, July 1 and Friday, July 2. We will be closed Saturday, Sunday and Monday, and will reopen at 9am on Tuesday, July 6. Orders placed Thursday morning can still be roasted and shipped out in time for Friday delivery to most locations in New England. Guaranteed next day shipping is also available. Better yet, stop by and pick up a pound in person.

And don’t forget, the Armeno Wine Cellar in the back of the mill has a wonderful selection of wines for your 4th of July parties and barbecues.

All of us at Armeno Coffee Roasters wish you a happy and safe 4th of July!

Armeno Diner Mug

Enjoy!

Good coffee has a reputation for enhancing our times of quiet reflection and remembrance. How many times have you enjoyed your Sunday morning newspaper with a fresh brewed cup of coffee? When you pull out those special photo albums or videos at family events, are you sharing coffee along with memories? For so many of us, the answer is ‘yes’.

Maybe it’s the aroma. Maybe it’s the flavor of fresh roasted coffee brewed to perfection in your favorite French press, drip coffee maker, or espresso machine – the one that you’ve had since your wedding so many years ago, or received on that special birthday or anniversary. It could be that you connect the tactile sensation of holding your special coffee mug with times and memories you value. Heck, maybe it’s just the caffeine, although I don’t really believe that.

We’re headed into the Memorial Day weekend, and people observe the holiday in many different ways. Whether you observe the holiday in remembrance of friends or family members who gave their lives in service to this country, or you observe the holiday with celebrations of current friends and family, Armeno wishes you a wonderful holiday weekend. If Armeno Coffee is a part of your rituals of remembrance, know that the personal attention and care we roast into every batch is dedicated to you.

In observance of the holiday, Armeno will have special hours. Armeno Coffee Roasters will be open until 5:00pm on Friday, May 28, and will close for the holiday weekend. We will reopen Tuesday, June 1 for our regular hours. If your coffee supply is low, be sure to stock up before the weekend is here. Armeno Coffee is also available at Lowe’s Market, Berberian Farms, and Davidian Brothers in Northborough, MA.

Also, don’t forget the Armeno Wine Cellar. Check the article from May 12, 2010 for a description of the featured wines from the Bordeaux region of France.

Armeno Diner Mug

Enjoy!

We have some really exciting news for fans of Armeno Coffee Roasters: La Minita is back! For those of you who know about La Minita, you also know that Armeno hasn’t been able to get any for over a year. And we almost missed out this year too, because the truck driver got lost trying to find us (or so he says…).

Armeno La Minita

Photo by Sue Teplansky

La Minita comes exclusively from Hacienda La Minita in Costa Rica. Their flagship product is made of coffee beans taken only from the top quality selection of each stage in the coffee process. The process is so selective that of 100 pounds of green equivalent cherries that enter the milling process, only about 23 pounds make it to become La Minita. The coffee is finished with a unique hand cleaning process that transforms this virtually perfect product into the very special coffee that Armeno Coffee Roasters is proud to roast to perfection and offer to you.

The plantation consists of a total of 1,200 acres of land, situated on a east-west axis, and bordered by the Tarrazu river to the south and the Alumbre river to the north.  These two rivers converge at the western base of the mountain spur upon which the farm is situated.  The soil is a pale clay, tan to light red. The central block lies between 3,750ft and 5,000ft.  In spite of the considerable altitude differences, the mean temperature variance is minimized by the cooling effect of the large river flow that borders the farm.  Importantly, the farm faces the west, which allows for gradual warming in the morning and slow cooling in the evening.

La Minita has long been considered by many experts to be one of the world’s most exquisite coffees. La Minita has brilliant acidity, a medium body, and sweet flavors of orange citrus, caramelized sugar, and fine chocolate. It is impeccably balanced with a long satisfying finish. We hope you’ll share our excitement and enjoy the Armeno Coffee Roasters La Minita while it lasts.

Armeno Diner Mug

Enjoy!

Armeno Wine CellarWith summer fast upon us and Memorial Day later this month, we all look forward to trips to Cape Cod, lazy summer outings, and yes, lots of yard work.  So before we get into this wonderful time of the year, we’re squeezing in one more Wine Tasting Event from the Armeno Wine Cellar. Join us this Saturday, May 15 1-4pm, at Armeno Coffee Roasters for a fantastic event featuring a stellar list of Bordeaux wines. And all wines are 15% off on the day of the wine tasting event. Don’t forget to print out this list as your guide during the wine tasting. We hope to see you there!

2009 Chateau Puy Boyrein Blanc

The vineyard of Chateau Puy Boyrein was once part of the large estate of Chateau Boyrein, which was broken up in 1877. The Medeville family has been restructuring the property for three generations. The 8 hectares of vineyards (red and white) of Chateau Puy Boyrein are situated in the commune of Roaillan between the Garonne river and the vast forest which runs along the Atlantic Coast.

The wine is a blend of Sauvignon 50%, Semillon 30% and Muscadelle 20%.  The grapes are hand selected and manually harvested. Maceration for 6-12 hours before pressing. Fermentation is temperature controlled with aging on fine lees. Wines are bottled at the chateau 6 months after harvest. The wine is a brilliant and clear, pale straw color. Citrus notes on the nose with hints of lemon and grapefruit, round and supple on the palate. A good persistent bouquet.

2009 Chateau Des Leotins, Entre Deux Mers

The district of this appellation is situated in the east of Bordeaux between two rivers the Garonne and the Dordogne, which gives this appellation its name: Between Two Rivers – Entre Deux Mers.

This 100% sauvignon blanc offers strong varietal characteristics and color. Very limited production for this quality wine. The Entre-Deux-Mers Chateau des Leotins is a very pleasant wine, fresh, in a pale yellow color with green reflections; subtle and elegant thanks to its fruity bouquet, it is pleasant on the palate.

2008 Chateau Gravelier Rouge

Merlot 70%, Cabernet Sauvignon 30%. The harvest is vinified in stainless steel and fiberglass vats. The fermentation lasts 20 days at a temperature of around 28 degrees C. The wine is then separated from any solids. After a series of racking throughout the year, the remaining particles are removed. The wine then undergoes a light fining and just before bottling, is filtered to avoid any impurities when in bottle. The wine is usually bottled 2 years after the harvest and continues to improve in quality for 6-7 years .

The vinification method along with good yields produces a wine with a round, fruity structure with notes of toast and red fruit.

2008 Chateau Des Leotins, Bordeaux Rouge

The Lumeau Family has been the owner of this estate for four generations. It is situated in Sauveterre de Guyenne in Gironde, 35 km from Saint Emilion and 45 km from Bordeaux, on the tourist road of the Entre-Deux-Mers vineyards, spreading between two rivers, the Garonne and Dordogne. The red wines of Chateau des Leotins are the result of combining traditional methods with modern technologies. After a selective harvest, only the best ripe berries are used to make this rich wine. Thermoregulated stainless steel tanks maintain a constant temperature during the fermentation.

Merlot 40%, Cabernet Sauvignon 45%, Cabernet Franc 15%. The wine offers a blend of forest fruits, cherry, blackcurrant, vanilla and sometimes violet that you can find in their bouquet after aging. They tend to open up during the meal. Deep red in color, they age very well.

2005 Chateau Galau, Cotes de Bourg

The history of this estate is ancient because Count Nodoz sold it in 1791 to the MJJ Bornes’ family, well-known ship owners in Bordeaux, who reconstituted it and built its reputation. This property already existed long before the French revolution and was called “Cru de Nodoz.” during the wine crisis of 1930, it was purchased by the Madgelaine Family from the merchants Posso and Rosenfeld. With its fantastic location on gravel slopes, the property spreads out on 40 hectares in a single piece.

Merlot 65%, Cabernet Sauvignon 35%, Cabernet Franc 5%.  Grapes are harvested mechanically and the wines have a long maceration and temperature controlled fermentation in stainless steel tanks. Clarified with egg whites and aged for 18 months in 100% oak barrels. Chateau Galau is a robust, tannic wine with a slightly smokey fruit nose. Good for drinking now but will also age well.

2006 Chateau Larrivaux, Haut Medoc

Chateau Larrivaux Vicomtesse de Carheil is one of the few estates in Medoc to have belonged to the same family for three centuries. Uniquely it has been passed down through the female line of the family. Chateau Larrivaux is in total a 100 hectare estate that includes woodlands, meadows and disused quarries. The vineyard is planted on gravelly hillsides, well oriented and composed of very favorable soils since they are of the same consistency and quality as those of the great growths in neighboring Pauillac and Saint-Estephe.

Merlot 42%, Cabernet Sauvignon 40%, Cabernet Franc 6%, Petiti Verdot 12%. Grapes are harvested by machine and destemmed. Wines are fermented for 21 days on the skins in cement and stainless steel tanks. Aging 16 – 18 months in oak casks and stainless steel tanks. The wine of Larrivaux has a brilliant color, powerful bouquet, and a soft lively flavor. These great wines can be enjoyed young. They are charming and fruity. This is an ideal wine for the modern consumer who likes fresh tannins yet it can also age extremely well.

2006 Chateau Vieux Chaigneau, Lalande de Pomerol

The Berlureau family has been making wine since 1885 in the area of Pomerol and Saint Emilion and launched Chateau Vieux Chaigneau in 1977.

Merlot 75%, Cabernet Franc 10%, Cabernet Sauvignon 15%. Fermentation on the skins for 20 to 25 days in thermoregulated stainless tanks. Aging for 2 years with 12 months barrels. Nice garnet color. Quite aromatic with small red fruits on the nose and a hint of wood. Supple and fruity on the palate.

Armeno Diner MugEnjoy!

If you are looking for something truly unique this Mother’s Day (yes, it’s this Sunday!), Armeno Coffee Roasters has some fresh ideas that will make mom’s special day memorable.

What could be better than fresh roasted Armeno coffee served with breakfast in bed? Our ever popular Papua New Guinea is a great choice. For a more complex cup, our Armeno House Blend combines beans from around the world for a perfectly balanced coffee. If she’s a fan of the dark roast, our Sumatra Mandheling French Roast is one of our favorites. Or, if you are looking for something a bit more exotic, try the Maui Red Cataui, which was greeted with rave reviews earlier this year from the popular coffee blog, Daily Shot of Coffee. And if mom is already a fan of Armeno, pick up one of our snazzy Armeno Diner Mugs.

If mom is not really a morning person, maybe she would prefer a distinctive wine from the Armeno Wine Cellar. Armeno’s carries a wonderful selection of reds, whites, champagne, prosecco, port and a few other surprises, personally selected by John Parks and Chuck Coffman from select vineyards around the world. Armeno Wine Cellars currently features a couple of wines from Women of the Vine (www.womenofthevine.com). This first-of-its-kind winery features hand-crafted, limited production wines. Women of the Vine Cellars unites award winning women winemakers from around the world under one brand. We also sell a wonderful book that tells the story of these talented women and their wines, another perfect Mothers Day gift.

For something really special, Armenos offers a selection of gift baskets, featuring Armeno coffees, wines, or tea from the Republic of Tea and Upton Tea. Take a moment to stop by our historic grist mill. We’re open Monday through Saturday, and there is still plenty of time to get your Mother that perfect gift.

Armeno Diner MugEnjoy!

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