Based in the heart of South London, Carnival Coffee Roasters are an exciting specialty roastery, producing some fine roasts from across the globe. I recently had the pleasure of trying their Luz Dary’s Espresso, brewed wonderfully both via V60 Filter and through the Aeropress, and this week am enjoying their Arcangel from Bolivia. Outstanding coffees all round I encourage you to buy!
Need convincing? I’ve caught up with Jayne from Carnival to see what the fuss is all about.
Let’s start simple, what are the origins of Carnival, what’s the story of how the journey began?
Juan and I met in Bogota in 2010 and Juan moved to the UK shortly afterwards. We took our kids backpacking in Mexico in 2018 and had ‘that’ life changing cup of coffee that set us thinking about how we could change our lives to source and share incredible coffee and set up a coffee roastery here in our little pocket of South East london. 6 months in the planning Carnival Coffee Roasters launched in April 2019. Juan grew up on a coffee farm on the outskirts of Medellin Colombia, the little piece of the Mountain side was won in a very lucky game of cards by Juan’s grandfather many years ago. Luckily the conditions were ideal for growing coffee. Juan’s parents, aunties and uncles still live and work on the mountainside today. So it was very much going back to Juan’s roots.
How is it being a part of the bustling London coffee scene?
It is an exciting time to be part of the London coffee scene, there is a real thirst for new and interesting coffees and experimentation on brewing and roasting. More and more people are getting exciting new kit and brewing great coffee at home. Our customers are increasingly keen to buy ethical coffee, with a great story from a company that is environmentally friendly – all of these things we continue to strive to achieve.
With coffee still certainly in a “boom” phase, more people are appreciating good coffee, how do you stay on top of flavours and styles to be on top of your game?
We often source coffee that we just absolutely love and can’t wait to share with our customers, we always carry a range from different origins, processes and flavours and always ensure the coffees we offer have a great story too. It is really important to us that our customers can try lots of new and interesting coffees with us.
You have a great range of roasts from all over the world, but what are your personal favourite styles to drink?
As part of the testing phase for each new coffee as well as cupping the coffee and trying lots of different roast profiles until we land on the perfect profile to highlight the characteristics of the coffee and variety; we always test the coffee on all the different brewing methods. However our go to coffee brewing method at home is the V60 pour over or a Gabi.
For our readers who know little about coffee, can you explain your process of getting the best beans to becoming your finished product?
We source coffee from our own farm in Medellin and work with small scale, ethical importers to source exciting new coffees from around the world. We try and ensure we always have great seasonal offers, a range of flavour profiles and always coffees with a great story and that is ethical. Once we receive the green beans we go into about a two week testing phase to get all our roast profiles and brewing recipes just so. It is mindblowing how many people and steps that are involved in getting great coffee in your cup from the farmers, the processing mills to the exporters, importers, roasters and awesome baristas – it is a huge team effort.
Our coffees of the week are the below 2 – what can you tell us about these:
1) Luz Dary Espresso
Luz Dary is a female coffee producer from Antioquia, Colombia. Luz Dary’s beans are perfect for espresso with notes of Caramel, Mandarin oranges, Hazelnut.Luz has a very strict cherry selection criteria for her coffee, once the cherries are picked Luz uses the washed process method
After screening, only the ripest cherries are allowed into the de-pulping machine. The fermentation process period takes roughly 25 hours. After fermentation, the coffee is washed and sun dried on patios and drying beds.Luz Dary is also an incredible singer and mother to 3 kids.
2) Midnight Moon
This is one of my favourite coffees of the year. This awesome coffee suits all brewing methods and is a total crowd pleaser with notes of fresh apple, kiwi and a hint of caramel. This coffee comes from the tribal lands in Rwenzori, Western Uganda from the region of Bugoy
We’re in lockdown and many of us are stuck brewing at home. What are your top tips for getting the best coffee at home right now?
Here are some top tips for brewing better coffee at home:
1) Buy your coffee in beans and If you can get a grinder and grind your coffee fresh for every cup (as coffee begins to lose it’s flavour after it has been ground)
2) Use boiled filtered water to make your coffee – leave your water to stand for a couple of minutes after boiling before making your coffe
3) Get a scale and measure your ratio of coffee to water – you can play with variables here until you get your perfect recipe and repeat! (brew ratios suggestions & recipes are on our website)
4) Store your coffee in a one way gas valve bag / tin or air tight container for maximum freshness – oxygen degrades coffee
5) Don’t store your coffee in the fridge! because coffee works as a deodorizer, it will absorb all the aromas in your fridge
All of our brewing recipes and tips can be found here on our website if easier to include a link:https://www.carnivalcoffee.co.uk/guides
What’s the plan for the rest of 2020 for you guys?
It’s to keep doing what we are doing, sourcing great coffee and sharing it with even more people. We are about to move into a new roastery space, which is exciting and will allow us to have a training facility on site too! We are also always beavering away on new ideas to reduce environmental impact with our packaging and delivery. During lock down we have been cycling over 300 miles a week in South East London hand delivering our coffee to people’s homes.
Thanks so much for your time…to finish, can you give us one fun fact about Carnival not many people will know?
I guess it would be the lucky card game that started our coffee journey many years ago!