April 20, 2023
It’s time to cut through the confusion, so you can find exactly what you’re looking for.
We see a lot of people use the term “bourbon coffee” when they’re looking for one of our popular bourbon-infused coffee roasts. The results can be misleading because, in the coffee world, “Bourbon” (pronounced "Ber-Bone") refers to a specific type of coffee bean — completely unrelated to the bourbon whiskey that we use in our Spirit Infused Coffee.
So to set the record straight, here’s a quick breakdown of bourbon coffee and bourbon-infused coffee.
The good news is … both are outstanding coffees.
Bourbon coffee beans are a type of Arabica coffee that originated on the island of Bourbon (now Réunion Island) in the Indian Ocean. The term "Bourbon" refers to a group of cultivars (varieties) that share genetic traits, rather than a single varietal.
Bourbon coffee is known for its high-quality beans with a complex flavor profile. The beans are often described as having a sweet, fruity aroma with notes of chocolate, caramel, and nuttiness. They are also known for their bright acidity and balanced body.
Bourbon coffee plants typically produce smaller yields than other coffee varietals, but the quality of the beans is often considered to be worth the extra effort. Bourbon coffee plants are also known for their resistance to disease and pests, which makes them a popular choice among coffee farmers.
Bourbon coffee is grown primarily in Central and South America, as well as in Africa and the Indian Ocean region. The flavor profile of Bourbon coffee can vary depending on the growing conditions, altitude, and processing method, but it is generally considered to be one of the highest-quality coffee varietals in the world.
If you’re a member of our Coffee of the Month Club, you’ve definitely enjoyed coffee made with Bourbon beans. Last March’s special roast featured 100% Bourbon coffee beans sourced from El Salvador. Other monthly selections have included Bourbon as part of a combination of varietals in the roast.
Fire Department Coffee has earned a reputation as a pioneer in the Spirit Infused Coffee niche because of the signature spirit infusion process we developed in 2016, that adds the very best qualities of premium spirits to the high-quality coffee beans that we choose for our unique roasts.
So when you hear us talk about “bourbon-infused coffee,” it doesn’t have anything to do with the bourbon coffee beans referenced above. In fact, the beans could come from any of a wide range of extraordinary coffee varietals.
We’re simply saying that we’ve infused those beans with premium bourbon whiskey, creating a rich, satisfying and non-alcoholic coffee that is complemented by the aroma and tasting notes of the bourbon.
Along the way, we’ve gotten quite creative with our choice of bourbons. We began with our original Bourbon Infused Coffee, but we’ve since expanded to include Black Cherry Bourbon Infused, Vanilla Bean Bourbon Infused and Salted Caramel Bourbon Infused. You can even get Nitro Vanilla Bean Bourbon cold brew in ready-to-drink cans.
So while we love a good “Bourbon coffee bean,” we really love infusing any great coffee bean with the best qualities of premium bourbon whiskey.
It’s become one of the things that Fire Dept. Coffee is most known for. If you haven’t tried our Spirit Infused Coffee yet, now is your chance.
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