Klatch Coffee Roasters at Coffeefest

What Makes a Winner? – FTO Ethiopia Gedeb by Klatch Coffee Roasters

[dropcap]K[/dropcap]latch Coffee Roasters has been well known in specialty circles for many years. Established in 1993, they are coming up on their 25 year anniversary – now regularly winning awards for their coffee and their service. I’ve had the pleasure to see Klatch compete (and win) in the (no longer being held) America’s Best Coffeehouse competitions of Coffeefest (an industry-focused coffee convention). I’m a bit sad to see these competitions go, as they were incredibly fun and enlightening to watch and experience – basically each ‘cafe’ would perform a cafe service in a mock cafe space (everyone had the same space), showing off their service and drinks.  Perhaps that sort of thing would be a good fit for a consumer-focused show in the future…

Klatch Coffee Roasters at Coffeefest


This episode of Coffee Lovers TV is all about Klatch Coffee Roasters FTO Ethiopia Gedeb coffee, a 2017 Good Food Awards winner.

I was both curious to investigate what makes a ‘Good Food Awards Winner’ and to see what Klatch is roasting up these days.

I realized after recording that I didn’t make any remarks on the idea of what makes a Good Food Awards winner in coffee – or what makes an award-winning coffee at all.  In this episode I found myself a little stumped for words – this coffee, while absolutely delicious, I found my words in describing it to be a little elusive.

Sometimes it is challenging for me to put adequate words to delicate coffees. I always try to paint a picture of my experience which is relatable regardless of your level of experience with coffee. I am acutely aware of how off-putting it can be to have someone talk to you about the tastes in coffee when it all sounds ridiculous.

My short summary of this coffee is that it is a delicious and solid representation of Gedeb Ethiopia coffee.

But…it’s not remarkable.

I feel like that response comes off very negative too. We kind of live in a world right now where coffee roasters everywhere are foisting superlatives upon their coffees to no end. How many times can you have a rare and amazing coffee before that starts to loose its meaning – and also starts to diminish the value/quality of coffee which is simply ‘quite good.’

I even feel like I need to put qualifiers in front of it now – ‘just’ good.

I’ll probably have to do a Cup of Joe where I rant and ramble a bit about this phenomenon. Maybe it’s mostly just me, as I live in this world 24/7.

But to add on to that a little bit, I think this coffee is the perfect example of an award winner. Judges for coffee are looking at a wide range of qualities good and bad to make their assessment, and this coffee has – so far as I can tell – no bad to it, and plenty of good. It’s well-sourced and well roasted, and it’s fairly easy to brew a great cup at home. These, of course, aren’t the technical guidelines judges in competitions use, but it is I think my fair outside assessment that anyone can agree with.

You might make the argument that great / very interesting coffees should have some kind of flaw – after all, natural beauty is often imperfect. Perhaps this is again a personal view of mine as lately I’ve found great enjoyment in exploring coffees that have remarkable specific character traits alongside notable flaws. This might also be somewhat related to my dissatisfaction with the typical symmetrical latte art pours of rosettas, hearts and the like. Give me asymmetry! Give me some shadow to define the light.

Ok, I’m getting way off track.  If you are looking for a good Ethiopian coffee, check out my thoughts and grab a bag if it sounds tasty. You won’t be disappointed.