1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on July 10, 2012
There is nothing quite like a cup of Intelligentsia coffee.
It doesn't compare to any other coffee I have tried. Whatever brand I have tried, Intelligentsia surpasses it.
Once you taste Intelligentsia coffee of any kind, it is hard to go back to other brands.
The best reason to try Intelligentsia is their commitment to direct trade. They travel all over the world to interact and do business with small coffee farms. Intelligentsia pays growers 25 percent above the Fair Trade price. They have written contracts directly with these small farmers in these nations, and you can see photos of these farmers on their website on the pages of the coffee you are purchasing.
Intelligentsia Coffee defines Direct Trade in 34 words: "Roaster and farmer collaborating in a meaningful and mutually beneficial way to create great tasting coffees which are fully traceable, highly differentiated, and definitively sustainable as measured by current social, economic and environmental indicators."
There are videos by the folks that started Intelligentsia that explain Intelligentsia Coffee's company philosophy better; you can google for them. What Intelligentsia has done for the coffee trade is simply amazing and awe-inspiring.
And it doesn't hurt that their coffee tastes absolutely delicious. Once you see all the steps that go into it, it is easy to understand why. Farmers revisit the coffee fields many times during the growing season, which lasts several months, to pick only the ripe berries. This is more labor-intensive: more picking requires that the laborers be paid more. It also results in better beans.
I tip my hat to them: they have changed coffee as we know it. I find that now, when I shop for coffee, I ask more questions and do more label reading when I shop for coffee rather than just purchasing a bag. Intelligentsia is the first coffee company that taught me some personal accountability for what is in my coffee cup.
on September 1, 2012
I was surprised, given Intelligentsia's reputation, that this coffee didn't have much flavor. I would not buy Intelligentsia pre-ground coffee again. It's more expensive than Starbucks. I'll just go to Starbucks and have them grind it for me. Really, this was not even as good as Papa Nicholas brand pre-ground from the grocery store.