Some coffee chains (cough, Starbucks) serve their drip so dark and sludgy that it could be used to spackle a wall. The bitter bite of almost-burnt beans and borderline-solid consistency combine to make a jolting and gut-souring brew. Not all coffee is created equal. And Portland, Ore.'s Heart Coffee Roasters has set out to prove that.
The micro-roasting coffee shop opened in October 2009 on East Burnside Road and roasts small batches of delicate, often single-source, aromatic coffee. On its website, Heart describes its coffee-losophy thusly:
"Our roasting style comes from a balance of Scandinavian and Portland coffee cultures. We roast our coffee to the lightest degree possible, while fully developing the flavors each coffee has to offer. We strive to purchase our green coffee according to the harvest cycles of each producing country. Our green coffee is stored on site in a humidity- and temperature-controlled area, in order to best represent the integrity of the bean."
If all that sounds like a lot more trouble than pulling off the vacuum-sealed foil top on a can of Folgers, we have two words for you: worth it. Heart's recent Guatemala Santa Clara Bourboncillo roast—made from bourboncito, or dwarf bourbon plants, from the Finca Santa Clara farm in Guatemala—makes our hearts skip a beat.