A Journey Through the Coffeehouses of Portland, OR
Sunday, November 1, 2009
I ♥ PDX Coffee
Heart Coffee and Roasting 2211 E. Burnside 7AM-7PM Everyday
Heart Coffee and Roasting has just opened up shop on E. Burnside and they are ready to show you that the fun has only just begun here in Coffee City, USA.
First off, Heart Coffee seems to have no fear of letting the world in on their passion. Most of the time the roasting is a private affair where the victories and defeats of man vs. machine are hidden from view of the consumer.
Taking center stage is the largest and most expensive-looking roasters I've ever seen. More like a Damian Hurst work-of-art-in-progress than coffee-producing machine, having the roaster out in the middle of the cafe is a bold move. The dangers of micro-roasting are many. I've heard that the difference of even a few seconds in the roaster can make a huge difference to a batch of beans. Sometimes that difference is only perceptible to the most refined palates. But even still, we'll see if roasting to a crowd will make a difference in the cup over time.
Heart Coffee is one of the more fascinatingly decorated coffeehouses looking like a biology classroom with sleek updates. There are diagrams of animal innards along with the detailed drawing of a human heart. Everything is cut open and ready for examination at Heart Coffee.
Equipped with a custom espresso machine and a vac-pot station, Heart Coffee currently has five roasts up for your tasting. Kenya Muthewathi, Ethiopia Yirgacheffe grade 2, and El Borbollo’n for single origin espresso; Ethiopia Mordecofe for drip; and Ethiopia Mordecofe and Guatemala Finca Villaure for siphon brewing (aka, vac-pot).
But, that is what they have today. Tomorrow it could change. A fantastic continuation of what Portland is quickly becoming known for, Heart is roasting, brewing and selling coffee with quick turnover. This gives them great control over their product and visitors to their shop will get the freshest brew available.
The Guatemalan is a big stand-out for me. It dances around your mouth giving off tones of cocoa and citrus in the front and cooling to black and blueberry flavors. For a coffee lover these coffees are amazing to taste.
Paired up with this sparkling new coffee is one of the best, and hardly seen baked goods in town. Random Order Coffeehouse and Bakery is supplying Heart Coffee with their top-notch muffins and pies, filled with mostly local fruits. Hopefully this signals a movement toward seeing more Random Order goods in coffeehouses all across town.
So, needless to say Heart Coffee is a must-see for any Portland coffee drinker. Taste the local goodness today, and, well, probably read about it in the New York Times later.