This is a review of the coffee subscription from the UK small batch coffee roaster Django coffee co, and the coffee itself. So I’m reviewing both the product, the coffee beans, and the subscription service.
Who are DJango Coffee Co?
DJango coffee co are a small batch coffee roaster, based in Southport, Merseyside, about 20 miles north of Liverpool.
They’re a small and growing company, and their goal is to be one of the best small batch coffee roasters in the UK. Having recently been voted one of the 7 best coffee subscription services in the UK by Independent, it seems they’re well on their way!
Stephen Paweleck started Django coffee after travelling to a number of countries which had vibrant coffee scenes, including Australia. Stephen’s travels gave him the inspiration to create a small batch hand roasting gourmet coffee business, offering carefully sourced single origin coffee beans both via subscription and sold online via their eCommerce website.
Django only sell whole beans, as Stephen wants customers to experience their coffee freshly ground. I find this quite interesting, most coffee roasters offer pre-ground for customers who don’t grind their own.
We all know that pre ground coffee just doesn’t deliver the same freshness as coffee that you have just ground yourself, and it doesn’t give you the ability to fine tune your grind, so I do think that the stand they’re making here is a good one. It may well lose them business as there will be people who would buy their coffee if it came pre-ground, but Stephen isn’t willing to sacrifice the quality of the resulting cup of coffee in order to increase sales, and I respect that.
They ship orders on the same day of order, they don’t charge for delivery, and they use craft sealed pouches with degassing valves. This means that rather than leaving the roasted beans to degas for another day before posting, they can post closer to the roasting date, as the degassing will continue in the pack.
Degassing by the way, in case you’re not familiar with the term, is the gases escaping from the beans after roasting. It’s mainly carbon dioxide, and the degassing occurs the quickest usually within 24 hours of roasting. If you were to grind and brew coffee within 24 hours, the rapid degassing at this stage would impact negatively on the taste. It does depend on the roast as to how quickly the gas leaves the beans, darker roasts tend to degas quicker.
Website, and coffee subscription sign up.
I found the website very easy to navigate. The product links are on the homepage, so I didn’t have to dig around for them, and it’s very straight forward.
They treat the subscriptions as a product, so you can simply go to their homepage, scroll down to the products, and either buy a bag of coffee beans, or buy a subscription. You can buy a one month weekly subscription, a three month weekly subscription, or a three month fortnightly subscription. They also sell two gift cards (£15 or £30) and coffee gift subscriptions, allowing you to buy a subscription as a gift for someone else, which I think is a great gift idea.
I find this quite a nice approach. With some subscription services you’re signing up to pay for a bag of coffee each week or whatever the frequency is, and you have to cancel it if you wish to stop buying. Django coffee approach it differently, allowing their customers to buy a subscription, choose the frequency, and then give their customer the option to buy another one if they wish to continue. I think this is quite a nice approach from the perspective of the customer.
Sold in single 250g bags, DJango coffee is £5.95 currently except for one coffee, Burundi Mpanga, which is £6.45. You can also grab a 1kilo bag for £16.95 / £18.45. When sold via subscription, it works out at £5.50 per 250g bag, including delivery, which is a very competitive price.
I’ve just finished my first monthly 4 week subscription, and each coffee came bang on time, and had been roasted only a few days prior to me receiving it. There’s a roast date on each pack, a card comes with each pack with information about the coffee. No complaints at all with the subscription, all perfect.
This is a really important thing for me. It’s one thing to offer a good product and service, but it’s important to me that I get a quick response when I contact a company, and that I get a good level of customer service from whoever is responding. I first contacted Django via their online help messaging service one evening, I forget what time it was exactly, but it was well beyond normal office hours. I got a reply almost instantly from a very helpful person, answering my questions very well. Since this initial contact I have sent a few emails, all of which have been responded to very quickly, and very pleasantly.
Now then… the pricing is great, the service itself is brilliant, they deliver very promptly and have good communication – but the most important question is, how good is the coffee?
The coffee is fantastic!
On this subscription, I’ve tried Mpanga, a Bourbon from Kayanza Province, North Burundi, East Africa. Fazenda Pantano, a Mundo Novo from The Cerrado, Minas Gerais, Brazil. Finca San Antonio, another Bourbon, from El Cerro San Jacinto, San Marcos, Central El Salvador, and Gitega Hills, a Red Bourbon from Nyamagabe District, Cyanika Sector, Southern Rwanda.
I am in the process of writing individual reviews from my tasting notes from each coffee, and when I’ve finished these I’ll link the above to these, but in the meantime all I’ll say is that I very much enjoyed all of them, and I’m about to buy another subscription.
They all score well with SCAA, scoring between 84 – 87, and in my humble opinion they’ve been roasted very well, giving the flavour notes expected from highly skilled, small batch roasting.
In terms of value for money, I think £5.50 per bag including delivery is an absolute bargain for this kind of quality single origin, single estate coffee. You can easily pay this or more for commodity supermarket coffee with a fancy logo and clever packaging!
I very much recommend Django coffee co, for their coffee, and their subscriptions. This is great coffee, well roasted, and a great service, at a very competitive price.
For more info see www.djangocoffeeco.com
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