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Some of you will be lucky enough to already know about Cafe No.9. It's a real gem of a place, located in Nether Edge, Sheffield - right next door to where we spent our first six years roasting coffee. As well as being one of my favourite coffee shops ever, it's the one and only place where we have ever said yes to a request to roast our coffee differently in an attempt to cater specifically for the all the people that love the place.
So, how is it different? Well, the coffee is a more fully developed roast. There's no filter coffee at Cafe No.9 so we decided to focus purely on getting intensity and boldness into the espresso shots. For me, it was a lot of fun to work outside of my comfort zone (our coffee is usually lighter roasted) and it was pretty satisfying to get this new, unique roast profile figured out and dialled in.
We've been supplying the cafe for a good few years now and on a recent visit, I was chatting to the guys there as I tried the coffee and wow, it really did taste good - and that's when the thought occurred to me. We should release this coffee as a special edition because there will be people out there that will absolutely love it!
Now, a couple of things worth mentioning - although this roast profile is darker roasted than usual, it's not 'dark' roasted by any usual standards, you won't see any oil on the outside of the beans or anything like that. It's just pushed a little further than usual so the acidity and complexity have been taken down a notch and the caramelisation is more dominant. You can expect 'richness' and intensity that works extremely well in either a bean to cup or an espresso machine.
The coffee we use for the No.9 roast is our very popular El Jardin from Colombia. I can't wait to hear what you think about this roast. The best suggestion I can make is that you head over to leafy Nether Edge and visit Cafe No9 yourself though, grab a seat next to the fire with a coffee and one of Paul's incredible cakes. For those of you that are a little bit too far away, you can buy your own little slice of No.9 right here.