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Decaf, Decaf Everywhere: PT’s Coffee Roasting Co. Huerta Del Rio Decaf

Do you blank out when asked about your favorite coffee origin? It’s all right. I did, too.

It’s a common enough reaction when your cheap coffee bag advertises its convenience or its smoothness more than where it comes from. Whether or not origin is worth knowing about is another source of contention depending on the kind of drinker you are. More casual drinkers might dip into a cafe once in a while. Others may brew daily for a morning caffeine boost. Yet more might use coffee as a warm and cozy pick-me-up, not unlike a mug of tea.

No matter where you land on the coffee aficionado scale, this is a topic you’ll want to brush up on. Learning about coffee origins and what, precisely, they offer each harvest has been one of the most enjoyable and illuminating parts of my journey. What makes Mexican coffee special? We’re going to get another showcase on what this origin, and region, have to offer with PT’s Coffee Roasting Co. If you haven’t read my previous reviews, check out my directory for all things specialty decaf coffee.

I’m excited to talk about this bag, so let’s go:

Origin

This is a Mexican specialty decaf coffee from the Huerto Del Rio region. This little slice of nature is romantically described on PT’s Coffee Roasting Co.‘s site, known for its winding mountain rivers and misty mornings.

Origin and region plays a major part in how the coffee tastes, feels and smells. You may notice some specialty coffee bags advertising not just flavor notes, but altitude and harvest dates. It’s incredible the detail that goes into the craft.

Roaster

This is a name you might’ve seen around. PT’s Coffee Roasting Co. is a wholesale coffee roaster that’s been around since the 1990’s, with a massive origin portfolio spanning Mexico, Indonesia, Guatemala, El Salvador, Colombia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Costa Rica, and Burundi. Phew! They were among the first coffee brands to partner with the Direct Trade Program, designed to ensure farmers receive proper infrastructure and education to support their craft.

They have a fantastic blog, too, that shows off the behind-the-scenes process of washing coffee, taking origin trips, and new cafe openings.

Packaging

Well, this was a pleasant surprise! Not only did I get a lovely specialty coffee bag to display in my future art project, I got a little postcard.

The ‘stamp and logo’ design here hearkens to old-fashioned packaging design trends from the 40’s and 50’s. Bold gold lines pop soundly against a deep blue backdrop, with a smattering of characteristic coffee bag design details to round us out. On the side you get a nicely illustrated little brewing guide, listing measurements in an easy-to-follow format. On the back you get another graphic entirely showcasing their longstanding love for the coffee industry. I found myself curious about the cow in the logo, though I can reasonably assume it’s a shout-out to old farming techniques.

This specialty decaf coffee bag is already a favorite for its strong grasp on design fundamentals and regal color scheme. Way to get on my good side early, PT’s Coffee Roasting Co.!

Aroma

I could catch a hint of the tobacco smoke right off the bat, the main detail separating it from other raisin-and-chocolate specialty coffee I’ve tried. I’m not a smoker, but it’s a rustic, appealing scent all the same.

Brewing Methods/Mouthfeel

This is such a dynamic bag. The coffee’s texture goes from thick and smooth to thick and creamy. I already didn’t want it to end.

Flavor Notes

The bag’s flavor notes are supplemented with a rather impressive line-up on the website: not only does it boast graham cracker, raisin and cocoa, it’s also said to have a tobacco, barley and hazelnut finish. Does it live up to the promise?

Let me say, right now, this bag is as complex as a Colombian coffee. Coming from me, that’s as high a praise I can give.

While I didn’t catch much in the way of graham cracker, the rest more than made up for it. The pourover bears a touch of the smokiness stated on the site, followed by its signature raisin and cocoa notes in a blend of tart and rich. I was more than a little surprised to get a hint of that barley aftertaste, while my mother detected hazelnut, instead. The French Press was very tart, though not quite sour, while the Moka pot was an earthy, creamy affair.

The pourover was easily my favorite out of several strong cups, the other flavor notes drowned out for a complex, smoky, chocolately brew I instantly wanted more of.

Final Verdict

I sure now how to pick them. This is a bag you have to try while it’s still available. Specialty coffee, by design, is lightning in a bottle: it combines origins, regions, temperatures, climates, cultivation methods and roasting techniques in one delectably designed package.

Huerta Del Rio Decaf delighted on every single level. Its scent was evocative and distinctive, wafting a classic coffee with just a pinch of smoky tobacco. It leads into a divine black cup that steers clear of bitter in favor of raisin and chocolate with a little bit of a grainy, barley finish. The mouthfeel is anything but grainy, however, and leans on the thicker, creamier side. The pourover is my favorite way to brew it, though I have to give a firm nod to the Moka pot for subverting my expectations.

While Bicycle Coffee Co. was a decent enough start, this is the Mexican coffee I’ve been waiting for. What a bag! If Mexico is an origin you’ve been interested in, and you prefer more complex cups, save up and give this a try. You won’t regret it.

You can find PT’s Coffee Roasting Co. at their site here.

If you enjoyed reading this and want to know more about decaf coffee, check out:

Today’s cafes are struggling between new delivery norms, pandemic adjustments and a shift to instant and capsule coffee. Check out this survey from The Daily Coffee News to find out more about the behind-the-scenes of your favorite coffee shops.

Americans are still drinking coffee. Just…differently. This report shows omebrewing has increased, instant coffee has seen a huge comeback, and cafe visits have been snipped down.

Specialty coffee isn’t as well-regulated as it seems on the surface. USDA, responsible for organic certification for numerous food and beverage products, is deciding to update its oversight policy in the coffee industry.

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