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We recently reviewed another offering from Minnesota’s Driven Coffee (Driven Coffee Impact Espresso Blend) and loved it, so we came to Driven’s Breakfast Blend with high expectations. We were not disappointed. The bold, bright taste and full body make this coffee a great eye-opener first thing in the morning, and the nuanced layering of light and dark roast coffees make it enjoyable at any time of the day.
Driven Coffee combines light-roasted San Pedro Costa Rica Tarrazu and dark-roasted Mexican Chiapas coffee iin proportions that bring out the finest qualities of each coffee. The Chiapas is a remarkably balanced cup that does well as a single origin, but really shines as a blender coffee, where its underlying notes of cocoa and honey and high citrus/berry fruitiness add both sweetness and brightness to the cup. Chiapas SHG coffees are denser beans that hold up well to dark roasting, which brings out notes of caramel and just a hint of nut and cedar in the finish. Costa Rica Tarrazu is another coffee with a reputation as a “good blender.” In coffee parlance, that’s often a euphemism for “undistinguished.” The best Tarrazu beans, though, offer a smooth, well-rounded profile spiked with tropical fruitiness, honey and caramel notes. A lighter roast preserves the fruit-forward brightness, mild cinnamon and slow cocoa and caramel finish.
The first hint of the flavors in store hit you as you inhale the steam rising from a freshly brewed cup. It’s not often that a coffee presents sweet notes before you even taste it, but caramel is the predominant note in the aroma. The first sip practically bursts with brightness, hinting at tropical fruits, berries, citrus and even a little stone fruit, with each flavor coming to the fore as the coffee cools. Underlying the fruit, a combination of cocoa and spice add a satisfying bass note to the flavor melange, and the finish is sweet and mildly nutty with just a hint of lingering cinnamon.
While the coffee is full-bodied, it’s not a heavy blend. Rather, it has a silky smoothness that melts away in the finish rather than leaving your tongue feeling as if it’s been coated in fur like too many full-bodied coffees do. If for no other reason, Driven Breakfast Blend is an ideal coffee to pair with just about any kind of food, from pancakes to grilled meats. It’s also a remarkably versatile coffee — delicious black, even if you don’t generally drink your coffee that way, but bold enough to stand up to cream and sweet enough to need no sugar at all even for those who have a sweet tooth.
If you, like us, look for more than good flavor in your coffee, Driven delivers. The self-proclaimed social enterprise is committed to doing good along with doing well by donating 10% of all sales to its partner charities. You can buy Driven Coffee online in amounts ranging from 12 oz. to 50 lbs. Your order will be roasted within 24 hours of shipping, and is shipped flat rate so that your entire order ships for one low price.
Whether you’re looking for a bright morning eye-opener or a smooth, balanced coffee to enjoy at any time of the day, Driven’s Breakfast Blend is an excellent choice.
Disclosure: Driven Coffee provided a sample of Breakfast Blend for our review. There was no other expectation or remuneration for this review.