Happy National Coffee Day! We here at Water Street love that there is an entire day dedicated to this wonderful bean. From sourcing to roasting to brewing, we love everything about coffee and we especially love sharing it with you! And that’s why we thought today was the perfect day to release our newest Water Street creation in celebration of a day that’s all about coffee.
Now introducing Water Street Fusion Coffee!
The first in this line is a Michigan Peach Infused Guatemala Antigua. With tasting notes of stone fruit, caramel, and yams, this coffee is a truly unique flavor experience that you won’t find anywhere else. It’s also made using a process that is all our own.
Due to the porous nature of green coffee beans, there is often a concern that the taste or smell of whatever materials or environment the beans are stored in will transfer to the bean itself over time. For example, a green coffee bean that has been stored in burlap bags for too long can become ‘baggy’ and end up tasting like burlap when it is brewed. Obviously, in that case, this is not a desirable feature for a coffee, but what if we infused the beans with something delicious?
It turns out, since 2012, coffee roasters all over the world have begun to experiment in this way by aging coffee in a whiskey barrel, storing green beans with spices like cinnamon, or trying other infusing techniques to change the taste of a coffee bean during processing. The resulting popularity of these experiments created some very special coffees and heralded the addition of an entirely new category in the 2016 Best of Panama Competition dubbed “Innovation Coffees”. It also sparked some creative genius at Water Street Coffee Roaster.
Our Roastmaster, Seth Chapman, began working with our owner, Mark Smutek, a couple months ago to start their own coffee processing trials.
“Since peaches are in season in Michigan, we decided to make a Michigan peach puree and let it soak into our Guatemala Antigua coffee,” Seth said. “We used 26 pounds of Guatemala to 26 pounds of ripe Michigan peaches and chose the Guatemala because of its relatively forgiving profile. It created a nice canvas for us to see what exactly the puree does to the beans.”
After soaking the beans in the peach puree, the Guatemalan beans are left to dry for about 48 hours resulting in a green bean that is now so brown it looks as though it’s already been roasted.
“A lot of attention and care is needed to evenly dry the beans while avoiding fermentation and other improper drying issues,” Seth noted. “But while it is drying, the puree sticks to the outside of the beans and allows the peach flavor to leach into every single bean. The resulting cup tastes strong of peaches. It ended up being an all-natural, local, and fun way to add an interesting dynamic to our roasted coffee.”
In the future, Seth plans to continue Water Street Fusion Coffee by experimenting with other infusions like the whiskey barrel aging mentioned before, spices, and other seasonal fruits. In the meantime, the Michigan Peach Infused Guatemala Antigua is a limited time offering with only 28 bags total being sold between the shops and our online store.
With just a hint of fall leaves in its aroma and a buttery finish on the tongue, we think that this coffee is perfect for these first cool days of autumn. Don’t miss out!