Limited Time, Unlimited Flavor
Third wave coffee, marked by an emphasis on sustainability and fair trade, has been fully embraced by the biggest players in coffee retail. Starbucks and Peet’s have increasingly emphasized single-origin coffee, introducing their own branded single-origin offerings. Two of Starbucks most popular single-origin coffees are their Guatamalan Casi Cielo and Mexican Chiapas, while Peet’s has recently promoted their single-origin Kenya Nyeri beans. All three of these offerings are limited edition: you’ll need to either get them now or wait until they are reintroduced later.
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Starbucks Casi Cielo – 4.2/5 Stars
Starbucks Casi Cielo is sourced from Guatemala. Casi Cielo (spanish), translating to “almost heaven,” suggests a sublime flavor. Starbucks’ articulation of the profile as elegant and floral with a satisfying cocoa finish would seem to fit such a description.
At one time, Starbucks kept Casi Cielo’s sale confined to only a handful of stores in higher-end locations. Over time, demand for the bean increased and Starbucks began to offer Casi Cielo to a mass market at accessible prices. As of writing this piece these beans are available both online as well as for retail at Starbucks locations.
Starbucks Casi Cielo is a medium roast noted to be bright and smooth with lemon acidity and dark cocoa hints. Reviews online are generally positive- commenting that this blend of citrus and cocoa is harmonious. Reviewers also generally find the profile nicely balanced, with an enjoyable body/texture.
Alternatives: Fresh Roasted Coffee also produces a single-origin medium roast from Guatemala- Huehuetenango. Huehuetenango recieves a rating of 4.2/5 stars. The flavor profile of Huehuetenango is similar to Casi Cielo, with light citrus acidity and hints of milk chocolate.
Starbucks Mexico Chiapas – 4.9/5 Stars
Starbucks Mexico Chiapas is a dark roast that originates in a region near the slopes of the Sierra Madre de Chiapas. The high altitude, precipitation, and volcanic soil of Sierra Madre de Chipas make for ideal growing conditions for coffee.
The flavor profile of Starbucks Mexico Chipas is noted as being sweet with notes of milk chocolate and cinnamon. Online reviews indicate it having a complex character- a well-balanced body, moderate acidity, chocolaty and nutty notes with faint herbal hints. However, Starbucks Mexico Chiapas appears to be a bit of a wild card, with reviewers describing a variety of different notes.
As of writing, Starbucks Mexico Chiapas is available both online as well as at Starbucks cafes.
Alternatives: For those who have missed out on this unique roast, Koffee Kult also offers a Mexican Chiapas bean. Koffee Kult’s Mexican Chiapas is a medium roast with lemony notes, but additionally has hints of peanut butter and milk chocolate. Fresh Roasted Coffee also offers a single-origin Mexican Chiapas that receives 4.3/5 stars. The flavor profile for theirs is unique- trading the chocolaty notes for hints of brown sugar, cherry, cashew, and pear instead. The unifying factor between all three is the nutty flavor that is present.
Peet’s Kenyan Nyeri
While the other two single origin selections are available (at the time of writing) for purchase both online and at participating Starbucks locations, it would appear that time has expired for Peet’s Kenya Nyeri. Peet’s Kenya Nyeri was available for purchase in August but, due to its limited nature, has been cleared from the shelves for now. But when these beans do come back to the market, what can one expect from this single origin bean?
The texture of Peet’s Kenyan Nyeri is noted as velvety and soft with jam-like fruit flavors, floral notes, and a bright aroma. The reviews of this bean online seem to corroborate this flavor profile, too.
As getting Peet’s Kenyan Nyeri beans in your cup may be problematic currently, here are a few alternatives. Peet’s currently stocks a different Kenyan bean, the Kenya Auction Lot.
It is a medium-dark roast of a single-origin bean, with notes of brown sugar and berry, a juice-like texture and citrus acidity.
Alternatives: For those seeking the Nyeri variety specifically, Portland Roasting Coffee offers a particularly interesting roast. The roasting of this bean is a light roast in contrast to the two varieties offer by Peet’s, with a brown sugar flavor profile complemented by floral and fruit (plum) undertones. Unfortunately, at the time of writing, this item too is out of stock- Nyeri is incredibly elusive!
But there is hope! Fresh Roasted Coffee offers a Kenya-AA Nyeri Ichamara (receiving 4.1/5 stars). Another medium dark roast, this bean has an interesting profile described as akin to orange, peach blossom and black tea. This one is in stock as of time of writing and may be a good alternative choice until Peet’s comes back on the market!
We hope you enjoyed this look at a few single origin offerings from major chains! For more information about single origin coffees around the world and what makes single origin coffee special, check out our comprehensive guide to single origin coffee here!