Sagebrush Coffee

Sumatra Coffee – Lake Toba Variety

Grind Level Guide

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It might go against common sense, but I find Sumatras like this more complex in the lighter roasts than in the usual darker roasts they receive. Most people roast coffee until the bean looks attractive. But with a Sumatra like this, you will have roasted it too dark if it looks pretty. Try ugly for a change; buy Lake Toba!


read below for more information about this variety

  • Tasting Notes

    This is an intense coffee, especially at lighter roast levels that we like to use. The cup is very bold, with strong flavors of heavily caramelized sugars, bittersweet chocolate, and a fruited undertone of mixed melons. Thick, that was my first thought when I was analyzing the mouthfeel of this coffee. It also has low-toned acidity one would expect from traditional Sumatra coffees with a darkly-hued character. The finish has some of the sweetness found in chicory root and dark caramels, and persists into the long aftertaste. This makes interesting and intense espresso, but might be too herbal and rustic for some palates.

  • Sumatra Coffee Lake Toba Production

    This coffee is from a distinctly unique origin; the volcanic island in the middle of massive Lake Toba, adjacent to the Lintong highlands of Sumatra. Being located on the island of Sumatra, Samosir is the largest "island within an island" in the world. It rises up above the level of Lake Toba to nearly the same altitude as the Lintong plateau, so the potential for quality coffee production matches that of the area. Yet the coffee was never sold separately from the regional blends, despite having a unique terroir. This is a microlot of coffee only from small producers on the island. This coffee has potent earthy/rustic character that fans of classic old-school Sumatra coffees will find immensely attractive. It might go against common sense, but I find Sumatras like this more complex in the lighter roasts than in the usual darker roasts they receive. The main reason is that many commercial roasters use color and surface texture as indicators of roast level. They roast coffee until the bean looks attractive. But with a Sumatra like this, you will have roasted it too dark if it looks pretty. Try ugly for a change; buy Lake Toba!

  • Packaging Note:

    This coffee is roasted to order within 24-48 hours of order. We recommend 2 days rest after roast, so this will be ready to drink when you receive it.

  • Geography:

    Sumatra (Indonesian: Sumatera), is an island in western Indonesia, to the west of the Sunda Islands. It is the largest island that is entirely in Indonesia (two larger islands, Borneo and New Guinea, are shared between Indonesia and other countries) and the sixth largest island in the world at 473,481 km2 with a population of 50,365,538. Its biggest city is Medan with a population of 2,109,330. Sumatra is an elongated landmass spanning a diagonal northwest-southeast axis. The Indian Ocean borders the west, northwest, and southwest sides of Sumatra with the island chain of Simeulue, Nias and Mentawai bordering the southwestern coast. On the northeast side the narrow Strait of Malacca separates the island from the Malay Peninsula, an extension of Eurasian continent. On the southeast the narrow Sunda Strait separates Sumatra from Java. The northern tip of Sumatra borders the Andaman islands, while on the lower eastern side are the islands of Bangka and Belitung, Karimata Strait and the Java Sea. The Bukit Barisan mountains, which contain several active volcanoes, form the backbone of the island, while the northeast sides are outlying lowlands with swamps, mangrove and complex river systems. The equator crosses the island at its center on West Sumatra and Riau provinces. The climate of the island is tropical, hot and humid with lush tropical rain forest originally dominating the landscape.


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