In our quest to discover hidden coffee gems, we recently came across Vaquero Coffee based out of Fort Worth, Texas. Vaquero Coffee was founded in 2016 and offer their personalized take on the world's most popular drink. Similar to the ethos behind many other brands in this space, the founders of Vaquero Coffee set out to offer a “superior alternative to corporate coffee chains.” In looking to test the accuracy of that statement, I purchased a bag of their Palomo Light Roast blend which is a combination of Mexican, Papua New Guinea, and Nicaraguan beans. Check out the remainder of this Vaquero Coffee review to see how their coffee fares.
Vaquero Coffee Review: Smell
Any true coffee lovers knows that aroma is an indispensable part of the coffee experience. Opening up a fresh bag of fragrant coffee is one of life's simplest and most enjoyable pleasures. Fortunately, the folks at Vaquero Coffee are aware of this. The Palomo Blend offered one of the most attractive aromas I've smelled in a while. It's pungent and bold fragrance is the type of scent I'd like to have permeating my home every morning. I typically use smell as a preview of taste. If the smell of this coffee would be any indication of flavor, I knew I'd be in for a real treat.
Vaquero Coffee Review: Flavor
I ground the beans to a medium grind and brewed my coffee using a standard pour-over method. As soon as the rich warm brew hit my tongue, I knew this was a very unique cup of Joe. Allow me to explain why.
As a general rule, light roasts allow more of the coffees natural characteristics to express themselves sometimes at the expense of the coffee's strength. By contrast, dark roasts are bolder but have less of the coffee's original flavor due to their longer roast time (check out our article on the differences between coffee roasts for more details). Vaquero's Palomo blend seemingly merges the best of both ends of the spectrum. It's strong but transparent in the expression of flavor. I typically favor medium and dark roasts for their strength and boldness. However, this light roast had an unusually strong punch that genuinely surprised my taste buds. For a moment, I almost forgot I was even drinking a light roast. Notes of orange were more than subtle. They were distinct and in my opinion, served as a perfect complement to the brews bold flavor. True to its tasting notes, I could also detect hints of coca and clove.
I was impressed by how this blend offered such a diversity AND strength of flavor. It's not every day you come across a coffee that successfully merges these prized attributes. I'd recommend this blend to coffee lovers who love a strong and robust light roast.
If you read about the company's history, you'll find that Vaquero Coffee is all about embarking on “daring new ventures into the uncharted territories of coffee”. I personally think their Palomo Blend is an excellent example of this. It actually helped redefined my take on light roasts. And for those that know me and my coffee drinking habits, that's really saying something.