The Fire Roasted Coffee Company, 900 King Street, London, Ontario. (corner of Dundas and Ontario Street)
I was visiting family in south western Ontario when I came across this cafe-roastery in London. They are located in the Western Fairgrounds building on the top floor. They offer an enormous selection of green and roasted beans for sale and, luckily for me, it turns out that they have some of the finest green beans I have ever sampled. We bought Sumatran and Ethiopian Harrar green beans, and both turned out excellent as expected from the visual quality. As well we bought two whole bean roasted coffees; the Galapagos San Cristobal Organic and the Mexican Chiapas FTO. These were evenly roasted, smelt fresh and were packaged nicely. Once I was at my friend's home, I set myself to the task of grinding the Chiapas... Oh my god! Even with a Hario hand grinder and a stove top Brikka Espresso I had one of the best espressos ever, and my friend said it was the best coffee of her life — and this was with equipment that I spent only $100 on! The Mexican Chiapas is chocolatey — like a fine dark chocolate, with floral sweetness lingering in the mouth. The aftertaste was smooth and deeply satisfying. The Galapagos was slightly acidic, fruity, sweet with hints of chocolate. It was suggested that we try blending the two beans at 70% Galapagos and 30% Chiapas. Normally, I would have said "no way", because the base should be the full body and chocolately Chiapas with the hints coming from the Galapagos acidity and fruity qualities... but I was completely wrong! The blend of 70% Galapagos and 30% Chiapas was magical, the result a balanced, deeply satisfying, tropical drink...It was delicious and the process very counter intuitive to me, for which I am thankful!