Best Coffee: 2nd Annual Golden Mug Awards

golden mugs

Coffee Lovers Rejoice for the best coffee. It’s the MistoBox Second Annual Golden Mug Awards!

The Golden Mugs are chosen by the most discerning panel of them all, our customers! We aggregated a year’s worth of customer reviews and data, and came up with this impressive list of the coffees our subscribers most enjoyed and raved about over the last year.  We used more than 25,000 data points to come up the winners below, our customers’ top coffees from 2016.

Without further ado, Your Golden Mug Winners.  

Best Coffee

Spyhouse Coffee Roasting Co. Ecuador Juan Peña

Spyhouse has brought this exceptional coffee to us as part of their Imperial Reserve Collection. The greatness of this coffee begins at its source and grower: Juan Peña. A first generation coffee producer, Juan chose to plant his coffee just a few years ago which means he was able to apply a unique approach to his cultivation. From Juan’s exceptionally high altitude farm there are no other coffees in sight. Our customers had plenty to say about this Spyhouse winner.

“Wow, this coffee was as good as people said it was. Once it cooled down, lots of jasmine and floral notes. Very light mouthfeel and delicate. Aroma and tasting notes of mango. Another killer coffee from Spyhouse.” – Billy

“This is a phenomenal coffee and roast. The smoothness, mouth feel, and delicate juicy flavors are a real treat. I would point it to being soft enough flavor to nuance papaya or melon, but enough zing to come through on berry notes. Really an exceptional coffee.” – Kevin

A Golden Mug Cheers to Spyhouse for bringing us this coffee; explosive in flavor and memorable in our cups. We can’t wait to taste this year’s harvest!

Best Single Origin

Portola Coffee Roasters Elida Estate Honey

Portola will tell you that this delicious coffee owes a lot to the man behind the beans, Wilford Lamastus. “Despite its transcending flavor and characteristics, the greatest thing about this coffee is our friend Wilford. “

Our customers were impressed with the flavors that came from the honey processing method, a process that involves removing the skin of the coffee fruit along with the majority of the pulp. Some of the pulp is purposely left on the coffee while it is laid out to dry in the sun. This pulp and the extended contact time with the coffee helps to create a really exciting and unique characteristic in the coffee like its natural sweetness, nice body and some tasty fruit and vanilla notes that add complexity.  

“This coffee exemplifies why I subscribed–to get beautiful coffees from roasters typically out of reach.  This honey process version is outstandingly balanced and yet super dynamic in layers.  Love this coffee!” – Evan

“The tasting notes are spot on with black cherry and though I am more partial to citrus notes, it tastes incredible. One of the top 3 coffee’s I’ve ever tasted, easily. Try it!” – Colin

“So unbelievably good!” – Tiffany

A truly great Single Origin coffee lets the region and processing shine through in the cup. A Golden Mug Cheers to Portola Coffee Roasters for treating this coffee with so much love – all to the benefit of our tastebuds.

Best Blend

Topeca Coffee Roasters Italian Blend

MistoBox Customers are a discerning bunch when it comes to their blends! They want fullness and harmony in flavor and this coffee definitely delivers. The Italian Blend is perfect for the Dark Roast fan as it features flavors of caramelized roast on top of the sweet chocolatey character of these coffees from the family’s farms in El Salvador. This coffee’s reviews are some of our favorites!

“It was warm and inviting like sitting next to a fireplace in the winter.” – Janine

“My favorite shipment yet. Great smooth full flavor, with subtle chocolate and caramel.”  – Maura

“My new personal-favorite all-time-wow-where-has-this-coffee-been-all-my-life blend.” – Mike

A Golden Mug Cheers to Topeca for delivering a blend that makes coffee lovers of the world say “Yes!”

Best Espresso

Noble Coffee Roasters World Tour Espresso

Noble Coffee Roasters take us on a trip around the world with this smooth and velvety espresso. Featuring Coffee from Brazil ‘Fortaleza’, Ethiopia ‘Wotona Bultuma’, Costa Rica ‘Las Gravilias’, and Bali ‘Kintamani’ all working together to create a complex balance in your cup. The finish has a perfect spice note with a lingering cacao finish. Who can say no to that?

“SOOOOO GOOODD” – Veronica

“Little bit of spice, but mainly rich and smooth. Loved this blend, and the packaging gives it an extra touch of that artisan feel” – Brett

“WOW. I love the bold taste of this batch. You can really taste the cacao in the finish.” – Garrett

Golden Mug Cheers to Noble Coffee Roasters for creating a complex espresso that is a sure fire crowd pleaser.

Best Decaf

Dillanos Coffee Roasters French Roast Decaf

Something we love about our Roasters is that they pay just as much attention to the Decaf coffees they produce as they do to their fully caffeinated counterparts, and Dillano’s French Roast Decaf is a true testament of that. The high elevation coffees used in this blend have a higher than usual bean density, which helps maintain sweetness and body in this dark roast.

“One of the best decaf coffees I’ve ever had!!” – Marlene

“I am a French Roast lover and this decaf version is perfect for those that want the dark, bold taste but don’t want the caffeine. I am impressed with the flavor and aroma. Dark, smooth, smoky.” – Amanda

Cheers to Dillanos for making sure our decaf customers get as much flavor and coffee love as the rest of us.

Best Roaster

Huckleberry Coffee Roasters

Huckleberry joined the MistoBox lineup in September of 2015 and it’s been nothing but awesome coffees since day one. Huckleberry will tell you that they geek out about the nuanced flavor complexities of coffee, but also enjoy a cup with a little cream. No matter what their goal remains the same: the passionate pursuit of tasty coffee. Huckleberry’s coffees got the highest average ratings which makes them The Best Roaster of 2016! A sample of what our customers had to say:

“Holy cow. One of the best coffees I’ve ever had!! I only brewed this up twice in my Kalita before I had it dialed in. Super forgiving and creates an incredible cup. You guys nailed this one.” – Brittany (Phantom Limb Blend)

“5 stars – worth seeking out. Buttery with balanced sweetness.” – Woodland (El Salvador San Rafael)

“Freaking amazing. Love pretty much everything about these beans. “- Allee (Blue Orchid Blend)

Cheers to this Denver based Coffee Roaster for their passion and playfulness. Our customers can’t get enough and we can’t wait to see what coffees they bring us in 2017.

Team Favorites

Populace Coffee Co. Colombia Rio Negro

Quills Coffee Colombia Los Naranjos

One of the incredible perks working for MistoBox is being able to taste hundreds of incredible coffees every year.  There are so many coffees from 2016 that would be considered “mind blowing” in the eyes of the MistoBox team! But every once in awhile a coffee comes along that stands out for of us. And this year our favorites came from Populace Coffee and Quills Coffee. What was it about these coffees that struck such a chord with us? Both of these coffees reminded us why coffee is such an integral part of our lives: they both brought us back to the comforts of the day. A touch of sweetness, warmth, and home.

Much of the MistoBox team found themselves making big moves and experiencing huge life changes in 2016. Between the 6 of us 2016 brought two newborns, two moves across state lines, world travel, and more than a few reminders that life is pretty darn precious.  These two coffees fit in perfectly as a part of our daily lives – as a sidekick during late night baby duty, the first cup at home after weeks of travel or just a simple pleasure shared with our favorite people.

Populace Coffee Roasters continuously leads the way when it comes to fantastic coffees so the fact that we all chose this coffee is no surprise! Their Colombia Rio Negro is a crowd pleasing coffee with layered brown sugars, milk chocolate and toffee with structured, mildly citric, acidity to balance the profile. It’s pretty much unbeatable for breakfast, an afternoon cup, paired with chocolate, a conversation, or everyday life.

Our next favorite comes from Quills Coffee Roasters in Louisville, Kentucky. Longtime Quills coffee drinkers are familiar with this immensely drinkable coffee, and we look forward to it year after year. The Los Naranjos cooperative in the Huila region of Colombia is known for growing some of the best coffees in the world. The cooperative is made up of 97 small producers, with an average farm size of 1.5 hectares (almost 4 acres). The cooperative is known for their meticulous commitment to quality, as demonstrate by their sweet, juicy coffees.  This coffee is the perfect pourover and we eagerly await Springtime and another coffee from this cooperative and the roasting team at Quills.

The MistoBox Team can’t wait for to see what 2017 brings for our fantastic customers, our impressive Roasters and every perfect cup of coffee that we work day in and out to bring your way.

**Check out our awesome coffee cocktail article and the perfect cold brew cup!