Any roasters on par with Howell and Wendelboe? - Page 3

Discuss flavors, brew temperatures, blending, and cupping notes.
RyanJE (original poster)
Posts: 1521
Joined: 9 years ago

#21: Post by RyanJE (original poster) »

coffeeyoutoo wrote:Unfortunately your question makes no sense.
I live in South Korea and am a cafe owner.
South Korea has four distinct seasons, and there is a significant difference in precipitation between the rainy season and the dry season. The GH in the rainy season (summer) is 25ppm and in the dry season (winter, spring) it is 70ppm. And depending on the region, there are places where GH is less than 10ppm.
When selecting green coffee beans or roasting them, seasonal changes in water mineral content must be taken into consideration.
Even when selling roasted coffee, guidelines regarding water must be provided to consumers.
However, since the cafe's espresso machine is directly connected to the water supply, the roasting of the coffee is best suited to the water in the area where the roaster (cafe) is located.

To put it simply,
This means that each roaster (cafe) purchases green beans and uses a roasting profile that is specialized for the mineral content of the water in the region where they are located.
When those coffees are compatible with the water you use, you can brew delicious coffee.
Did you mean to post that here?
I drink two shots before I drink two shots, then I drink two more....

Posts: 697
Joined: 4 years ago

#22: Post by Acavia »

I like both Howell and Wendelboe. I mostly drink Sey having a subscription, and there has never been a Sey coffee I did not like to some degree. Its subscriptions are well priced.

Posts: 697
Joined: 4 years ago

#23: Post by Acavia »

Amaya in Houston is very good, and very good value. I would put it on par with Howell and Wendelboe. It reminds me of Passenger just not as many offerings. For US shipments it has a fairly low threshold for free shipping. That had some really good Mexican coffees that were very memorable recently. Based on what your wrote, I think you will like it.

Posts: 9
Joined: 7 months ago

#24: Post by GU2GD »

@luca thank you for your thoughtful interjection.

User avatar
Team HB
Posts: 1135
Joined: 19 years ago

#25: Post by luca »

RyanJE wrote:While I totally understand with what you are saying, I think there is more to play here. TOO many roasters are charging more money and people are spending it because of their marketing! Look at Onyx for example, their prices have gone crazy and sizes shrinking. All the mean while their packaging and marketing has gotten super complex and stuffy. Green prices have no where near approached that. Also, since our governments were passing out money, companies were happy to snap that up.

If you use Wendelboe as an example, price / quality is in check. Its outstanding what he has accomplished and he certainly is not ripping off his farmers and partners. And therefore not ripping off customers either. Unfortunately, the shipping cost doubled over night from 15 to 30 for 5x250g bags. Thats not his fault of course, but makes the coffee delivered much more expensive...
Yes, you're quite right to point out that things are quite opaque to consumers and that we can't assume that higher retail prices mean higher prices to producers. But like I do think that if you are price sensitive, you are probably pretty likely to experience a quality drop. I just cupped about 35 coffees from three different importers. I found one 88.75, which was delicious and I'll try to snap up, but I didn't actually find a single coffee between 86.5 and 87.5. Not one. This part of the market where you had good quality coffees that were kind of priced in line with everything else has really dropped off. If you look at the SCTG, 88+ prices went up, 86s stayed flat, and 84s and below followed commodity down. But I feel like the supply of 86.5 - 87.5 has diminished, thus if you aren't paying more, you've got to expect that a lot of the single origins you are paying for have probably gone down a notch or two in quality.

FWIW, I don't really know about Onyx's retail prices, but if you look at Onyx and TW's FOB prices, they seem like they're double or more what the Australian roasters that I've seen that report such prices pay ... and that's just the Australian roasters that are confident enough that they are paying amounts high enough to be worth showing off!

Of course, it's all difficult because every roaster's marketing material is more or less the same.
LMWDP #034 | 2011: Q Exam, WBrC #3, Aus Cup Tasting #1 | Insta: @lucacoffeenotes

Posts: 1384
Joined: 12 years ago

#26: Post by cmin »

Jeff wrote:Both George Howell and Tim Wendelboe are known for consistent selection of greens and quality roasting in their respective tastes in coffees and choice of roast levels.
Man just had 3 or 4 different beans from Howell and all were mehhh, have to go back through but I think only one was ok and it was one of the estates but can't remember which. Nothing like in the past, someone else mentioned same elsewhere and that was months before my order so I don't know if their having issues as well or forgetting how to roast like so many roasters now lol (had so many bad/off bags in the last 12+ months and people have said same here and elsewhere). Was even worse on flats, but even those big ol 83 conical burrs in the Prime couldn't tame Alchemy.

Even alchemy I had temps down to like 190 and still so bitter and astringent and tasted way darker than they looked, even in ephq baskets. So weird, Alchemy was always super easy to dial no natter dose or what.

Posts: 1873
Joined: 6 years ago

#27: Post by BaristaBob »

Passenger has been one of the better roasters for me. In comparison to Howell, maybe slightly better these days. Just my opinion.
Bob "hello darkness my old friend..I've come to drink you once again"

RyanJE (original poster)
Posts: 1521
Joined: 9 years ago

#28: Post by RyanJE (original poster) »

I do wonder with turn over of the staff doing the roasting, how much quality is slipping there. It seems like a lot of roasters just plug and play other employees into the roasting eventually..
I drink two shots before I drink two shots, then I drink two more....

Posts: 227
Joined: 13 years ago

#29: Post by skittles_s »

I agree that GH has been a bit more hit or miss lately. They're my neighborhood shop so that's been a bit disappointing to me.

I've been pretty happy with Passenger. I find their prices fair though their free shipping went away sometime late last year and that does change the calculus a bit.

I ordered some Heart around the new year and they were very nice coffees.

I've had other good coffees lately but not from a place that is consistently at the level mentioned.

Overall, I've found "great" coffees harder to find in general the past couple of years. I feel like ten years ago we experienced an embarrassment of riches in that regard.

Posts: 1384
Joined: 12 years ago

#30: Post by cmin »

skittles_s wrote:I agree that GH has been a bit more hit or miss lately. They're my neighborhood shop so that's been a bit disappointing to me.
Now I'm glad it wasn't just me even though seen others say the same. The Boa Vista was just "ok" at best, Alchemy was fairly dreck worthy, bitter and astringent as hell and that was even on the HG1 Prime (was worse on flats) and dropping temps down towards 190 to try to tame it lol. It tasted like a roasty super dark roast except it wasn't dark obviously lol, so perplexing. Even on V60 some of their stuff was.... :?

Alchemy was excellent years ago time and time again.

There is something off with almost every single roaster today. Never had so many off bags even from roasters ordered from countless times.