Crown Jewel Decaf Ethiopia Organic Oromia Natural SW Process

Discuss roast levels and profiles for espresso, equipment for roasting coffee.

#1: Post by mpdeem »

I just received my order of the Crown Jewel Decaf Ethiopia Organic Oromia Natural Swiss Water Process. This coffee was offered by positivelypositiv on the Green Coffee Exchange thread.

This is an incredible coffee which does not even taste remotely like a decaf. The coffee is a seamless blend of flourless chocolate torte, semi sweet chocolate, blackberries and raspberries...almost like a dense rich Sacher torte. It is a very sweet coffee without appearing so and the berries notes are not over the top or in your face. The flavors are seamlessly blended together so that it takes a few sips to deduce each nuance and individual note. There is absolutely no decaf malt, rye, carob, or other decaf type flavors. This could easily pass as the regular caffeinated coffee in flavors and complexity. I have never tasted a decaf like this...probably the closest was a Peru Decaf that Sweet Maria's offered a few years ago - one which Tom described as being able to pass as non decaf.

I drank this alongside one of my favorite coffees, a Colombia Honey Process Maragogipe from Captain's Coffee. The Maragogipe is somewhat atypical in that it has more depth and complexity than the typical Maragogipe with berries notes with even a few slightly wine like notes along with savory note, I fully expected the Decaf Oromia to pale in both sweetness and complexity...boy was I wrong. As I went back and forth between the two coffees, I was surprised to find that the Oromia seemed sweeter at times, probably due to the Maragogipe's savory notes. The Oromia held its own in terms of complexity and strength and I found myself eagerly returning to it despite being served alongside one of my favorite coffees. Now normally I detest decafs, especially their flavor profile, finding most decafs weak and you can imagine how surprised I was to find that not only did the Oamia hold its own...but it was giving one of my favorite coffees stiff competition for my interest.

The raw beans are slightly darker but surprisingly green and unmottled in appearance. The dry aroma is surprisingly good with only the occasionaly faint trace of aroma to betray its identity (as a decaf). The roasted aroma is lovely with no obvious decaf notes, and the same is true for the brewed coffee.

I roasted this in a modified Poppery I popcorn air roaster with a kitchen dial side mounted as a temperature gage. I reached first Crack around 7 minutes, with a top ambient temperature about 445-450 F at about 8:20 minutes, cooling back down to 425 just before 9 minutes, ending the roast at 9:35 minutes at about 418-420 F. The fan on my 'newest' Poppery I is stronger than on previous models, so as a result I am roasting at slightly higher than normal temps (by 5-10 degrees) to compensate.

This is a stunning unlike any decafs ever tasted that it blows my mind. Up until now I have avoided decafs after several years of mediocre examples despite different roast and brewing parameters. Only recent endocrine- autonomic related health issues have forced me to reconsider decaf - and very reluctantly so on my part. The idea of having to substitute decaf for my usual coffee even a few times a week was depressing - especially after giving up tea and the occasional few glasses of wine. Only the already spartan nature of my daily diet made me reconsider decafs - and now I am so glad that did. I no longer dread the possibility of having to give up caffeine - that is how good this decaf is. I realize decafs of this caliber and profile are probably far and few between..but I never expected a decaf to be so wonderful and un decaf in just about every aspect.

Despite having 5 lbs, I just contacted positivelypositiv to find out if he had anymore of this coffee left. I cannot recommend this coffee highly enough - it will change your notion of decafs as being pale imitations and often poor substitutes. Literally this is a coffee that is stands out - not just among the company of other decafs. If I had the funds and discernment, i would consider getting another decaf Crown Jewel - for the Decaf Oromia is absolutely like no other decaf I have ever tasted.

Thank you positivelypositiv for offering this coffee. Hope you have a few extra pounds stil left in stock!

Hope to hear from anyone else who got this coffee. I am going to play around with different roast levels...but honestly my first roast is so wonderful I am not hard pressed to change it at all.

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#2: Post by walr00s »

Just ordered a box. Will be happy to share some

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#3: Post by prust »

Any chance you can post a link to the site where you purchased this? Thanks

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#4: Post by Chert »

LMWDP #198

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#5: Post by GC7 »


You write poetically and beautifully about this coffee. If Sacher torte is mentioned I am officially jealous. I think of Sacher torte as apricot though. Royal really does a good job of triage to come up with so many great offerings. I also like their data on greens and roasting.


mpdeem (original poster)

#6: Post by mpdeem (original poster) »

Thank you for the kind words, good coffee inspires good words..well maybe not in my case.

You are right in that Sacher torte usually has apricot. I once worked for a baker that made Sacher torte, using apricot filling but with a little rasberry to add a litle zest. The result tasted like the classic version but with slighlty more complex fruit flavors. This coffee reminds me of that slightly unorthodox recipe - I should have clarified that so as not to confuse. I also should state that the flavors are refined and at first even subtle.

This is not the typical super chocolate bomb coffee - rather it is refined and so integrated that it takes a while to separate the individual flavors. The sweetness is even more subltle, emerging overtime along with a slight raspberry tartness. I would strongly suggest that my descriptions be taken with a salt shaker - given the differences in palates and sesnitivity.

Day 2 drinking this decaf. I was having one of those days, fighting a headache and butter fingers - managed to spill my husband's caffeinated coffee all over the counter. Ground the beans a tad too much resulting in a much slower brew with the coffe being almost too strong. Despite the comedy of errors coffee remains lovely as ever. The stronger 'extraction' - if that term can be used with a moka pot - resuts in the occasionl slightest suggestion of rye berry when the coffee is piping hot but dissappearing as as it starts to cool. The fruits seem more prominant today but more in the aftertaste as opposed to upfront. I really struggle to drink this slowly and savor the flavors because it is so good.

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#7: Post by CarefreeBuzzBuzz »

We shall see in a few days if this lives up to its hype.

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#8: Post by mkane »

Time up. What's the verdict?

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#9: Post by CarefreeBuzzBuzz » replying to mkane »

Hmm not sure. The Klatch Sugarcane is still by far my favorite decaf.

I enjoyed it but was not blown away as an espresso - 20 in 38 out. Only one shot and one roast so not much experience. I get the Sacher torte reference but mine didn't seem sweet. Maybe because the Klatch Sugarcane is so so sweet.
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#10: Post by JohnB. »

I've done 3 roasts so far; C+/FC/FC+. So far my favorite shot came from the FC+ roast which ran about 10 seconds into 2C. Both the C+ & FC+ roasts are only 2 days old so we'll have to see what they are like in another 2-3 days.