Favorite espresso blends: Temple Dharma & Chromatic Gamut

Discuss flavors, brew temperatures, blending, and cupping notes.
BobStern

Postby BobStern » Jun 10, 2018, 9:01 pm

I've been meaning for a long time to recommend my two favorite well-developed espresso blends.

Temple Coffee's "Dharma" has the most complex flavor of any espresso blend I've tried. It's at the dark end of the range of espressos I prefer. The closest comparison I can think of is Lusso Lionshare. I find Dharma richer and without Lionshare's delicate tradeoff between a burnt roasted flavor if overextracted or weak if underextracted. I say this not to criticize Lionshare but to help position Dharma on a flavor spectrum.

Temple Coffee is offering free shipping with no minimum purchase until tomorrow (June 11) at midnight Pacific time. Use promo code DADSDAY. Otherwise, shipping is free with a $25 order.

A step in the direction of sweeter but still rich is my other favorite espresso blend, Chromatic's Gamut. (I also enjoy two SOE's that hopefully will reappear this September and November, respectively: Honduras Rosalio Ventura honey process; and Unicorn Pony, a blend of two Ethiopians.) In the San Francisco area, Chromatic is cheaper at Whole Foods than online.

http://store.templecoffee.com/

http://www.chromaticcoffee.com/coffee/

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Peppersass

Postby Peppersass » Jun 11, 2018, 3:38 am

I'm a huge fan of Temple, and regularly order their Dharma Blend. Most of the coffees I buy for my wife's filter machine come from Temple, too.

Normally the Dharma Blend isn't at the dark end of my range. Most often it's a medium roast, though I've had batches that are lighter or darker. In fact, the current batch I have registers somewhere in the 110+ range on the Tonino, which is decidedly on the light end of the spectrum. I have to grind it finer and pull longer to get a balanced cup. 90% of the batches I've received don't require that.

One of the things I like about Temple is that they usually don't roast their SOEs too light. I think their best offerings are medium roasts. However, sometimes their featured SOE goes past that. Not super dark, but definitely not medium or light. I've got some of their Guatemala Los Santos Espresso and it's quite dark for my taste. I can't let that one run more than 25 seconds and it probably needs to be pulled Ristretto. That's darker than I prefer.

AgileMJOLNIR

Postby AgileMJOLNIR » Jun 11, 2018, 11:08 am

I've only had my Linea Mini for about 6 weeks but in order this is what I've tried and liked with my favorite being at the top of the list.

1) Sight Glass Owl's Howl
2) Chromatic Gamut
3) Ritual Sweet Tooth
4) Equator Ethiopia

I also tried the Ikon Ethiopian Yabitu Koba which was good but a pretty standard bean with a basif flavor profile. I also tried Four Barrels Espreso Blend but think I got a bad batch. I could never get it dialled in and it always had a bitter burnt taste. I'm pretty sure I got and overroasted bag so I may give them a shot again just to make sure.

BobStern

Postby BobStern » Jun 11, 2018, 2:19 pm

@AgileMJOLNIR:

Is Owl's Howl markedly brighter than Gamut, or just a little brighter?

I'm intrigued that Owl's Howl is your favorite because I've found the espresso intolerably bright at the Sightglass cafe at SFMOMA. Have you tried it there? At SFMOMA they only serve "SFMOMA blend", but their website descriptions of Owl's Howl and SFMOMA blend are very similar. Perhaps their baristas are intentionally under-extracting it.

al3xx

Postby al3xx » Jun 12, 2018, 3:56 pm

BobStern wrote:A step in the direction of sweeter but still rich is my other favorite espresso blend, Chromatic's Gamut. (I also enjoy two SOE's that hopefully will reappear this September and November, respectively: Honduras Rosalio Ventura honey process; and Unicorn Pony, a blend of two Ethiopians.) In the San Francisco area, Chromatic is cheaper at Whole Foods than online.


I'm also a frequent drinker of Chromatic's Gamut. If you enjoy the Unicorn Pony but don't want to wait for another six months, maybe try Huckleberry's Phantom Limb. It's also a blend of washed/natural Ethiopians, and I've really enjoyed it.

AgileMJOLNIR

Postby AgileMJOLNIR » Jun 12, 2018, 4:03 pm

BobStern wrote:@AgileMJOLNIR:

Is Owl's Howl markedly brighter than Gamut, or just a little brighter?

I'm intrigued that Owl's Howl is your favorite because I've found the espresso intolerably bright at the Sightglass cafe at SFMOMA. Have you tried it there? At SFMOMA they only serve "SFMOMA blend", but their website descriptions of Owl's Howl and SFMOMA blend are very similar. Perhaps their baristas are intentionally under-extracting it.


That is interesting. No I haven't been there yet but I definitely did not find my extraction at home to be too bright by any means. This is how I pulled. This was based off of the recommended parameters but I dialed in to taste. I definitely got the Chocolate, Cherry and Candied Lemon notes but never got the Honey. I wouldn't be surprised if it was subdued by the other stronger flavors. No bitter or sour flavors. While it did have a brightness to it I didn't find it too be much greater than the Gamut.

My Recipe
Dose: 18.5g
Bewing Temp: 201F
Bewing Duration: 30-31sec
Extraction Yield: 31-32g
Pressure: 9bar

SightGlass Recommended
Dose: 18-20g
Bewing Temp: 200-202F
Bewing Duration: 28-31sec
Extraction Yield: 29-32g
Pressure: 9bar

daveR1

Postby daveR1 » Jun 12, 2018, 4:58 pm

I recently had a chance to try Temple Coffee at their 9th Street Downtown shop in Sacramento.
I travel to Cali every May to work as a race photographer for the Amgen Tour of California cycling race. I'm one of those crazy guys who sits on the back of a motorcycle zipping around the racers and team cars taking photos.

We pass through a number of cities each day during the week long race covering most of the state, so being the espresso junky that I am, I grab every opportunity to try out a shot at every promising coffee shop I see. Plus It pays to keep my moto driver well caffeinated.

I contacted my friends at Klatch in Rancho Cucamonga (can't say enough good things about these folks) and they gave me a list of shops to try. Since they didn't have a shop in Sac, they recommended Temple.

I tried straight shots of both the SO Guatemalan Los Santos and the Dharma blend. the Los Santos had to be about the best tasting shot of "lighter" roasted espresso I've had. Lightly acid, yet flavorful, fruity & floral, yet no sour "lemon"juice" like I've experienced elsewhere. The Dharma, as the barista warned me, had a bit more bite and while I liked it, I thought it might be better as a short milk drink like a macchiato.

When I got home, I ordered some of each. After resting the beans a few days, since at my altitude in Utah they tend to be gassy for a while, I started pulling shots. I haven't quite matched how good the shot I tried was, but I'm getting closer.

Image

BaristaBob

Postby BaristaBob » Jun 12, 2018, 5:32 pm

BobStern wrote:I've been meaning for a long time to recommend my two favorite well-developed espresso blends.

Temple Coffee's "Dharma" has the most complex flavor of any espresso blend I've tried. It's at the dark end of the range of espressos I prefer. The closest comparison I can think of is Lusso Lionshare. I find Dharma richer and without Lionshare's delicate tradeoff between a burnt roasted flavor if overextracted or weak if underextracted. I say this not to criticize Lionshare but to help position Dharma on a flavor spectrum.

Temple Coffee is offering free shipping with no minimum purchase until tomorrow (June 11) at midnight Pacific time. Use promo code DADSDAY. Otherwise, shipping is free with a $25 order.

A step in the direction of sweeter but still rich is my other favorite espresso blend, Chromatic's Gamut. (I also enjoy two SOE's that hopefully will reappear this September and November, respectively: Honduras Rosalio Ventura honey process; and Unicorn Pony, a blend of two Ethiopians.) In the San Francisco area, Chromatic is cheaper at Whole Foods than online.

http://store.templecoffee.com/

http://www.chromaticcoffee.com/coffee/


Just ordered the Temple Dharma with the free shipping. Sounds tasty...thanks for the shout out on this coffee.
Bob "hello darkness my old friend..."

emradguy

Postby emradguy » Jun 12, 2018, 6:10 pm

Maybe about...oh...8 years ago...I was into Chromatic Gamut for a while. Then the blend seemed to jump around a bit from batch to batch and I stopped ordering from them. Earlier this year, I read about their new roasting facility and decided to give them another try, because, despite the variations I described from my first experience with them, their beans were really good...rich with chocolate, almost fudge really, caramel and a mellow floral overtone like jasmine or hibiscus. I've had maybe 3 or 4 5# bags over the past 6 mos and the roast has been very consistent and reminiscent of the"old days". I've been super pleased with it, and will definitely keep it in my lineup of regulars...which also includes things like Nossa Familia's Full Cycle and Greenway's Scrimshaw.

If anyone is in the Santa Barbara area, you are probably familiar with Handlebar Coffee and their Gibraltar blend. Having driven through several times now on my trek between LAX and Santa Maria, i recently sent them an email asking if they'd consider making their beans more accessible to us HBers by offering larger volumes at a more competitive price with many of the other artisan roasters we frequent. Keeping my fingers crossed on that one.

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Peppersass

Postby Peppersass » Jun 13, 2018, 12:06 am

daveR1 wrote:I tried straight shots of both the SO Guatemalan Los Santos and the Dharma blend. the Los Santos had to be about the best tasting shot of "lighter" roasted espresso I've had. Lightly acid, yet flavorful, fruity & floral, yet no sour "lemon"juice" like I've experienced elsewhere. The Dharma, as the barista warned me, had a bit more bite and while I liked it, I thought it might be better as a short milk drink like a macchiato.

Interesting. I'm pulling the Los Santos this week and my feeling is that it's rather dark by Temple standards. My recollection is that it registered 86 on my Tonino, which is definitely not a light roast. Medium at best, maybe a tad darker than that. Had to pull it pretty fast (25 seconds, which is fast for most of the coffees I drink) and lower the temp. Might work a little better Ristretto.

As I mentioned, the Dharma blend I got in the same order was fairly light, 110 on the Tonino, and somewhat hard to pull (max 18.85% EY) until I upgraded my Monolith Flat to SSP burrs. Got 21.63% after that, but it was a Lungo shot.