This time round, our Secret Coffee Club recommendation is dedicated to Batch Coffee, a company dedicated to bringing you the best tried and tested coffee to your door every month via subscription box.
With a very simple setup process and the chance to discover a new favourite blend each time you get a delivery, the team behind the name spend hours tasting and reviewing coffee from around the world to bring you the best two blends every month.
Trying to hunt for a new speciality coffee roaster by yourself is quite the headache.
With the ever-increasing demand for coffee has been an ever-increasing list of fabulous roasters right here in the UK, and growers around the world.
So, Batch decided to help us all out a little bit.
The larger roasteries with a big social media presence who supply our favourite coffee shops can easily be found, but those which have to spend a little less on marketing can struggle to have their voices heard. So, these are the guys who Batch include in their subscription boxes.
They receive coffees from around the UK and Ireland and then they will sample and rate them. The top two picks go into their boxes, so the subscribers get to sample something new too. Both seasoned coffee connoisseurs and newbies will appreciate the picks.
Founder Tom Saxon spent time in Australia, as a barista at one of Sydney’s top speciality coffee shops. He later became a roaster, further developing his relationship with speciality coffee. After three years, the destination was Latin America, where most of the coffee came from.
They learnt all about the farmers’ relationship with coffee, and all that goes on behind the scenes which people don’t really know about. Upon returning to the UK, Tom saw that coffee culture had well and truly evolved – and was here for the long-run.
The first step is for you to pick your box – it can be a one-off, or a continuous delivery every two or four weeks.
The former is great if you want to buy somebody a gift in order to persuade them to try and get more involved with coffee, and the latter is obviously best for coffee fans who a) need a constant supply of coffee and b) love to not stick to the same thing month after month.
You get 2 x 200g bags, which is enough for an average of 25 cups at £0.57p per serving depending on the blend and subscription level. Choose the duration of your delivery, and then select your grind level.
With Whole Bean, Cafetière/French Press, Pour Over, Aeropress, Stovetop and Espresso Machine varieties to choose from, you get extensive options.
Finally, choose whether to receive the box as a recurring delivery or just for 3 or 6 months. Coffee is sent out every two weeks to preserve freshness, so you will have one of the two delivery dates each month.
Want to find out more about the coffee you are drinking? Scan the little barcode on the packaging, and up will come everything you need to know. You can also view all of their previous boxes in their Box Archive, and there is a handy link to the exact blend which was included in the box in case you want to buy again.
All of their current and previous coffee reviews are on the site as well, with in-depth information regarding the Origin, Roaster and how exactly it tastes.
It is all rated as well, so there are scores for how much body, sweetness, aftertaste and aroma there is from it in case you want to look back and try the previous coffees they have recommended. Great if you like particularly sweet notes, for example, so don’t want to be stuck with something which won’t give your tastebuds quite enough attention.
What We Tried
We tried Box 4 (as mentioned, all their previous boxes can be viewed on their archive page).
This contained a coffee from Carnival Roasters, and one from Darkwoods Coffee.
Carnival is a company with eco credentials at the forefront. This originates from Colombia where they support sustainable coffee projects, and they then offer local delivery on a bicycle in South East London. The coffee is produced on a family farm, and then hand-roasted in small batches in their garden workshop in Penge.
They are the perfect example of what Batch is about – supporting the ‘small guys’ who have quality, ethics and community at the heart of what they do, and where all of their personal ethics trickle down throughout the supply chain.
Darkwoods are based in Marsden, Yorkshire, and the inspiration behind their brew is based on the windswept environment surrounding them. The three founders have a wealth of experience in the industry, so setting up a roasting company together was a pretty natural progression.
The Rwandan Musasa Dunkunde Kawa that we tried packed in a wealth of flavours. There was an overall nutty, deep taste, but one member of the team got a slightly herbal tea twang and another had a juicy aftertaste, slightly fruity like raisins.
We adored the packaging, which shows that every single customer is thought of and cared about. The entire branding really stands out too, from the bright colours to the extra touches which shows that they really know their stuff.
Got a fancy brewing contraption for Christmas and not a clue how to use it? Batch has a host of handy informational guides on their website, from how to use an Aeropress to making V60 like a pro.
They also sell the equipment which they love themselves, from scales to filter machines. When reviewing coffee, a few techniques will often be used, to see which methods get the best taste out of the beans.
They also have some great blog posts, such as the story behind being a barista and the art of remembering names, to their top picks of where to grab a coffee in Manchester.
In Summary – Why Choose Batch Coffee?
- Great price – around 50p per cup
- A real element of surprise with each month
- All coffees have been tried and tested by the team
- Lovely packaging
- A real community feel – every subscriber is like a family member