Writer Amanda David takes a look at the latest products from independent small batch roastery Curious Roo.
Combining serious Aussie coffee credentials with a commitment to quality and an endless curiosity about how to get the best out of beans, Curious Roo artisan coffee roasters Edwin and Magda dumped the 9-5 grind (pun intended) and followed their dream of simply providing great coffee to customers across the UK.
From their converted warehouse in West London, they now supply independent coffee shops with specialist single-origin beans from around the world; they also have a coffee shop in Ealing and, happily for us, an online shop where you can buy coffee, equipment and even a Curious Roo hoodie for the true fan. (For commercial customers, they also run a range of free training classes – check out the website for details.)
Browsing the shop, their passion and expertise show in the accompanying tasting notes; it’s like a Michelin-starred wine flight. The Vietnamese K’no has notes of ‘caramel, butterscotch and pineapple’ whereas the Columbian Sweet Valley leans towards ‘candyfloss, blueberry, cranberry and white chocolate’. And the joy is that, much like good wines (and if you’re anything like me), you don’t need to be an expert to enjoy them - although I do recommend that you try a couple of different origins, you might surprise yourself.
I had their Barn Door blend from Columbia and Brazil, described as having notes of dark chocolate, caramel and cherry. I tried it first as my essential morning caffeine hit: standard hot coffee, freshly-ground, strong and black. I can report that it’s delicious – rich, rounded and with a definite hint of sweetness – and more than capable of powering you into your day.
Waking up in the morning to a weekend heatwave, I made enough coffee to pop in the fridge for iced lattes, which were wonderful. I could still taste a distinctive caramel note to the blend even when it was chilled – which obviously led me to cover a good handful of the whole beans in melted dark chocolate and chill until set. These were divine dusted with good quality cocoa powder and eaten straight out of the bowl but then I too got curious.
Drum roll please for a gutsy, espresso-strength shot of Barn Door, served as an Affogato: hot, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and then topped with the aforementioned chocolate-covered coffee beans. Spoon/pour into your mouth whilst lazing with a book in the sunshine.
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Chatting Food Contributor: Amanda David
Freelance food writer, copywriter and blogger, Amanda David is dedicated to sharing news about London’s restaurants, bars, exhibitions and general wonderfulness. It’s a tough job but somebody’s got to do it.
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