We’re always on the lookout for the newest and best coffee brands out there. Lately there’s been some buzz around Peoples Organic, a small-batch coffee that hails from Minnesota.
So what’s the big deal? Well, People's Organic uses single-origin, fair-traded gourmet beans to create unique blends of coffee. They use wet processing and the air-cooled method to maintain optimal freshness and flavor. Everyone who has tried People's Organic has given it rave reviews.
Naturally, we had to check it out and we have to say, the coffee really is amazing. Here’s the scoop:
The Road to Peoples Organic
People's Organic founder Lynn Gordon is a pioneer in the natural food industry. She got her start in the sustainable/organic food movement in the early 80's as a macrobiotic cooking teacher, where she worked as a consultant for those suffering from terminal illnesses.
Gordon opened her first cafe and bakery, French Meadow Bakery, in Minneapolis in 1985. French Meadow remains the oldest continuously certified bakery in the country and has seen its products distributed in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and parts of eastern Canada. Pretty impressive, right?
Over the next few years, Gordon started a number of successful bakeries and coffee shops, including Isle Bun & Coffee Company, Ezekiel 4:9 bakery and others.
She decided to go with a new concept in 2005 when she partnered with HMS Host to a open an all natural/organic restaurant in a North American airport. It was met with huge enthusiasm from jet-setters who wanted clean, healthy options while traveling. The idea spread, and now there are airport versions of French Meadows in Atlanta, Milwaukee and Salt Lake City.
People's Organic Coffee & Wine Cafe was a natural progression from there. When Gordon started Peoples Organic, she had one goal — to create a cafe that focused on simple, nutritious, organic food and beverages and that’s exactly what she did.
The cafe is all about sustainability and supporting the local/organic farming community. The menu features healthy meals that make you feel good inside and out, with options for vegetarians, vegans and those with a gluten intolerance. People's Organic has received praise from locals as well as area magazines and news organizations, all of whom have fallen in love with the cafe’s flavorful dishes and, of course, the coffee.
A Recipe for Amazing Coffee
Now it’s time to talk coffee.
What is it that makes People's Organic coffee so good? Like all great coffees, it starts with what you put in it. People's Organic sources its coffee from some of the top coffee farmers in the world, and all of the beans are USDA Organic Certified and fairly traded. They take it a step further by choosing only “gourmet” coffee beans, which means they score 80+ out of 100 on the Specialty Coffee Association of America scale.
And then there’s the processing. People's Organic beans are wet processed, a slightly more expensive and involved method but one that helps remove dangerous mycotoxins and produces a high-quality roast. Then they use air-cooling to ensure that the beans keep their natural sugars and flavor. It’s little differences like this that create such an amazing cup of coffee.
People's Organic coffee is also super fresh thanks to their small-batch approach. Now, we know what you’re thinking... How could it be small-batch coffee when you can find it at your local grocery store and Amazon? The trick is that they only distribute a limited inventory each time, which means you’re getting the freshest beans sent to you every time.
Roasts We Love
Sixteen — that’s the number of varieties Peoples Organic offers. It’s pretty impressive for a small roaster in Minneapolis, and each one is crafted to perfection. They’re all worth trying, but there are a few that really caught our eye. Here are our favorites from the People's Organic lineup:
This is one of Peoples Organic’s best sellers, and it’s not hard to see why. The beans come all the way from Ethiopia, the birthplace of coffee. What makes this blend stand out is its sharp, tangy flavor and and thick bodied liquor.
Who doesn’t love a good Sumatra? This one is rich and smoky, giving it a bold aroma but with a smooth aftertaste. Peoples Organic goes with an Italian style for this roast, giving the coffee a little extra kick.
Equal parts sweet and spicy, this golden-colored coffee is incredibly smooth. Peoples Organic takes special care blending this one so that all of the coffee’s unique characteristics come through.
Don’t let this medium blend fool you — it packs a heavy body with a slightly smoky flavor. You’ll notice floral and nippy aroma notes and a mild cherry undertone, all of which combine for a perfect cup of coffee.
This one is really interesting. It blends Guatemala, Sumatra and French coffees, giving it a sweet, buttery taste. The flavor is intense (in a good way!) and has a hint of cardamom that we found especially delightful.
There’s no two ways about it — Peoples Organic is an artisan coffee brand that is well-deserving of the praise it has received. We were extremely impressed by them. From their commitment to fairly traded and organic beans, to the extra effort they put into processing, you can tell the People's Organic team really care about delivering a high-quality coffee. Give it a try and let us know what you think.
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