Thursday, August 23, 2018
Some of their non-barrel aged varieties on display
Located in the sprawling industrial district of Commerce City, Colorado Tal Fishman is combining his passion for coffee and bourbon to create Whiskey Barrel Coffee.
Tal is also an accomplished artist. He created this piece for his coffee shop and cafe.
They believe that a truly excellent cup of coffee is born from attention to detail throughout the entire operation. There are zero compromises when it comes to their process, from handcrafted blends using the age-old art of green coffee melding, before manually slow roasting them in their vintage roaster.
Tal explains, “We didn’t create Whiskey Barrel Coffee because we wanted another product to sell. Whiskey Barrel Coffee exists because we were searching for a distinct and unique experience that we were unable to find anywhere else. We wanted to combine our passions for coffee and bourbon whiskey in a way that would enhance the combined experience while staying to true to what makes each enjoyable on its own.”
Coffee Bagging and Sealing Machines
Tal and company discussed purchasing options for a unique green coffee they found after months of searching, “We were told it was only the top 2% of the crop and was too expensive to screen or process.” They didn’t give up, worked out a deal, and convinced the farmer. The process to screen this coffee was created exclusively for Whiskey Barrel Coffee. Vittoria Estate coffee was born, creating the base of the blend that was soon to become Whiskey Barrel Coffee.
Coffee selection is only part of what makes their product so unique. Obtaining the highest quality bourbon barrels is the next step. Bourbon is required to age in freshly charred, single-use American white oak barrels. “We work hard to secure the highest quality, freshest bourbon barrels for our Whiskey Barrel Coffee. We only place our Whiskey Barrel Coffee blend into bourbon barrels that have been used specifically for bourbon.”, says Tal. When bourbon ages in a freshly charred oak barrel, the clear distilled spirit, and the wood interact creating much of its flavor from the caramelized sugars and vanillins from the charred wood. After emptying the barrels remain saturated with up to 10 gallons of spirit. This was deemed as the “the devil’s cut.” by master distillers. As the green coffee beans age inside freshly emptied bourbon barrels, they slowly absorb the devil’s cut and take on the flavor characteristics of the bourbon while leaving the finished coffee free of alcohol. The Vittoria Estate beans age and meld in the bourbon barrels to create a truly distinguished flavor.
Tal got his start by repairing a wide variety of espresso machines
Whiskey Barrel Coffee is then small batch roasted in their vintage European Roaster. Carefully picked beans are manually roasted with care. No computers or programmed roasting profiles required. Their master roasters have fine-tuned the process with hundreds of test batches until the perfect roast was achieved.
“Every small batch is carefully monitored during roasting, and skillful adjustments are made to ensure that each batch and bottle delivers the same flavor and experience. During roasting, the coffee is smelled, watched, and even listened to by our master roaster as he manually guides the process.”, said Tal
“The packaging of our Whiskey Barrel Coffee is yet another important part of the experience. We didn’t have the heart to bag our creation like it was any other coffee. Whiskey Barrel Coffee’s packaging is a reflection of our commitment to getting it right, and therefore, it’s packaged in a way that is as unique as the product itself!”, exclaimed Tal.
Each and every bottle of Whiskey Barrel Coffee is hand-filled, hand-labeled including batch and bottle number. After that, it’s hand-dipped in wax to seal in the delicate flavors and aroma. “This process extends and enhances our commitment to quality—each bottle reminds us why we make Whiskey Barrel Coffee. This unique product is truly a labor of love, and we are so excited to share it with you!”, said Tal
By utilizing a 750 ml Clear Glass Dome Shoulder Round Liquor Bottle from Packaging Options Direct, Whiskey Barrel Coffee is able to create a luxury look and feel for his product.
During our visit were able to try this amazing coffee and can attest it's a new and completely unique coffee drinking experience.
It’s true, the Vittoria Estate coffee is able to absorb the whiskey flavor without its coffee flavors being overwhelmed, allowing both flavors to meld and complement each other in every cup.
His newest product is taking the barrel aged coffee and turning it into a nitro cold brew. It’s ground and slow steeped to create a full-bodied flavor yet light at the same time. The sample he provided had a velvety frothy crema from the injection of small nitrogen bubbles. It’s available in his cafe and is expanding throughout the Denver-metro area.
You can order Whiskey Barrel Coffee along with his non-barrel aged varieties online or at their retail location.