While in LA we visited Intelligentsia’s roastery. This isn’t their primary roastery (Chicago). But they’ve been at it for a few years and use this facility to service the West Coast.
This visit was a ton of fun for us. The classic quote from the trip: “Adding any dairy product is a corrective action.” In other words, from their point of view milk and cream only belong in bad coffee.
At Clover we’re loving our quality coffees black, but don’t worry, our milk and cream aren’t disappearing anytime soon.
Intelligentsia has these incredible relationships with growers, something we’re quickly learning is critical to good coffee. They’re also pushing this idea of “seasonal” coffee. Not sure I totally buy that, but they’re not the only ones talking that way. You can hear the same thing at Ecco and George Howell. Thing is, “seasonal” in this context really means: “we don’t sell old beans.” That’s because, unlike really perishable food products, coffee beans keep for a while. It’s sort of like the other bean, legumes. You don’t want them to be years old (most in your local grocery store probably are), but it’s OK if they are 8 months old.