With brewers becoming more serious about sourcing quality beans, the ability to recognize particular coffee flavors can be beneficial to beer lovers, and anyone who wants to better appreciate their coffee beers as well as their steamy cups of morning Joe would do well to seek out Terrapin’s Single Origin Coffee Stouts.
Sold as a mixed four-pack, the brews in this series are each made with coffee beans from a distinct growing region, with information about the farm, bean varietal, processing and even the elevation at which the beans were grown to nerd out about printed on each label. The underlying stout, duplicated in all four bottles, is decidedly average, but that’s actually a benefit—there’s nothing to get in the way of the aroma and flavor of the coffee, which is the true value of this series.
Ethiopia – Hambela
Our favorite of the four, the beans in this version came across as earthy, like literal dirt—but in a good way. The rustic, soil-like qualities combined with notes of hazelnuts, vanilla, really dark chocolate, jam and pizza crust.
Hawaii – Kona
A lighter bean aroma. In this one, we picked up notes of milk chocolate, mocha, honey and an almost floral, green tea-like quality. The swallow was a little harsher and ashier than in the other brews.
Guatemala – Huehuetenanago
A combo of cracked black pepper and figs personified these beans, while the prickly body carried notes of coffee creamer and flashes of citrus.
Sumatra – Wahana Natural
These beans gave off an incredibly roasty aroma, like oily espresso beans and fruity dark rum. The flavor was also the most burnt—almost like old coffee burning in the pot—but also has the most sweetness up front.