El Carmen

Place: Back To Black @ Bakery47 / Victoria Road, Glasgow
Coffee: Colonna / Panama / El Carmen
Variety: Geisha / Washed
Drink: Clever Dripper brewed
Roaster notes: Floral, ripe juicy acidity, honey-like.

Back To Black, a.k.a. the Church of James Wallace, is now holding service at Bakery47.*

Coffee here is effortless. Flavours and aromas are made so deliberate and so obvious that there is no way you are not tasting the notes of raspberry or mango or dark chocolate or whatever single origin is on for that particular week. As usual, it was impossible to resist trying all three coffees on the menu – a solid washed El Salvador as espresso, a ludicrously good washed Ethiopian on batch brew**, and the first mind-blower of 2017 so far – a manually brewed Geisha from Colonna.

This particular cup of Panamanian Geisha lived up to every bit of hype that has been written about it. There was a clarity of flavour that was not so much “tea-like” as just straight up “tea”. It was delicate and clean. A lingering note of honey followed every sip, along with a little sadness from realising that you were one sip closer to finishing it.

This kind of coffee is worth travelling for and I urge everyone in Glasgow to try it while it is still on. The cauliflower cheese pie is a bonus.


* Religious metaphor shout-out to home-town favourite, Clements.

** Currently at £1 a cup, surely Back To Black’s batch brew represents the best quality-to-penny ratio in the entire Glasgow coffee scene?

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