Rook Coffee Roasters has 3 locations and are opening up a fourth. Their roasting is out of ocean, NJ and their shops are in Long Branch and Oakhurst. The owners do all of their own roasting and offer a very simple menu: their own special kind of pour over or cold-brewed iced coffee. Their sizes are regular or bigger than regular. The shop is set up so that you just walk in, get your coffee, and walk out. There is no seating or much of a place to stand. The video online gives a little more background to it all, but the whole time I was looking into this, I couldn't get out of my head that they were boasting a properly extracted pour over in less than a minute of brew time. I couldn't figure how that was possible without any kind of extra pressure. They show in the video that they grind it fresh, dump it into their pour over setup, and it drains right into the cup. Needless to say, I was pretty skeptical.
I went there today, and I was pleasantly surprised, but thoroughly perplexed. I got a cup of their Costa Rica, which was described as citrusy with stand-out orange, and it was genuinely delicious. I felt that it was just slightly papery (maybe due to lack of rinsing of the filter or the fact that it was brewed into a paper cup) but overal a good coffee that pretty much delivered the cup that they said it would. What confused me even more was that the coffee was not a light and bright cup that I've come to expect from a typical pour over, but it had some body elements that were closer to a French press. Watching them prepare it, I thought some of this could be coming from the fact that they add all of the water in so quickly that the grounds get stirred up, agitated, and get a bit of immersion, but it's still only brewing for a minute. The staff was incredibly friendly and accommodating, as well as being pretty knowledgable about their coffee, but the guy I talked to didn't have much of an explanation for the process besides that it just worked and that it was part of the "secret."
I bought a half-pound of their Colombian and a half-pound of their Flores to use in a couple methods (including espresso), so I'll have to see how that goes. But I can't imagine that the results will be anything less than what I experienced there. Coffee quality seems to be at the forefront of their business, as it should be.
If anyone is in the area, check it out, and let me know what you think. I would be interested in some others opinions about their coffee, shop, and methods.
Posted Wed Aug 1, 2012, 4:24pm Subject: Re: Rook Coffee Roasters in NJ with 60-second pour over
So I had some of their Colombian as espresso and a Japanese iced coffee. The flavors are just about how they describe (more green, juicy apple than anything else), and the roasting seems to be pretty excellent for an unknown little shop. I'll be trying out the Flores soon, and I'll check back in with the results.
I also had their cold-brewed iced coffee. It was a pretty good standard cold brew, but nothing spectacular. I'm pretty impressed with the shop as a whole. The fact that they keep their prices low and seem to be delivering an awesome product is great, and I will be buying from them again.
By the way, has anyone looked into--or can give insight into--this pourover system they have and how it can work?
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