Looking for a local roaster to re-stock our coffee supplies at home, we came across Renegade Roasters, located in Moorooka in Brisbane, Australia. We dropped in to say hi, and ended up learning a LOT about their coffee roasting process and how they’re able to influence the dark chocolate flavour in their flagship Cocoa Rogue beans.

Open Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, it was a bit of a mission for us to find a suitable time to pop down and see the guys at Renegade; our morning routine starts with coffee, feeding a baby, getting ready for the work day, etc. It was a hectic week and we just couldn’t line up a time. It was Wednesday, and my wife had a swimming lesson with our baby; I made the last minute decision to drop her off, and duck in and make good on our promise to visit and have a chat; finally.

I was met by Rhys and Beck at Renegade, mid-roast. Beck is an experience coffee roaster, having worked around the world in the profession, bringing some 20-odd years of experience to Renegade. Rhys was out the back, not slacking off at all; he emerged with some amazing cold brew to sample.

While Beck roasted, Rhys and I talked beans, grabbing three samples for us to try out at home. We landed on ‘Cocoa Rogue’, a darker roast, India Kelagur Heights and Sweet Rebel, both lighter roasts with fruity tones. Beck was incredibly knowledgeable and helped me understand how their roasting process brought about the different tasting notes we could expect from these beans.

And so we drank all the coffee.

Cocoa Rogue

The Cocoa Rogue beans were the first to go into our Breville Barista Express.

We’re big fans of punchy espresso shots, a rich crema and strong flavor, and the Cocoa Rogue is one of our favorite beans to date. Leaving a beautifully dark chocolate note as you sip this coffee, we quickly remarked it’s suitability to be used for a dessert coffee; but we also found it incredibly drinkable all day long. Having now consumed over 1kg of these beans, we’ve found the Cocoa Rogue to be incredibly versatile, using it for our morning flat whites, espresso shots, and even in an affogato for dessert. We were able to dial this bean in perfectly on a Breville Barista Express, with a medium/fine grind helping to pull all of the flavours. The dark chocolate flavor shines when you click the grind back one or two notches slightly coarser.

Definitely our favorite of the lot, we recommend this one if you’re looking for a go-to espresso bean! Let us know in the comments how you enjoyed it best!

India Kelagur Heights

CountryIndia
RegionManjarabad, Western Ghats, Chikmagular District.
FarmKelagur Heights Estate
VarietalSLN6 & SLN9
ProcessNatural
Elevation915 – 1220 MASL

If you’re normally a tea drinker, the India Kelagur Heights is a great bean to switch to coffee. Recommended as a pour over or plunger, you’ll pull a delicious honey after taste with these beans. Beck noted that steeping this in the afternoon in a plunger will have you drinking this all afternoon. A lighter roast with more fruitier tones than the other coffees reviewed here.

Let us know in the comments how you enjoyed it best!

Sweet Rebel

Our first impressions of Sweet Rebel were mixed; it was incredibly smooth and light; hitting us with a really mellow after taste. As a lighter roast, we were pulling double shots to get the strength we enjoy, and we weren’t disappointed at all. Caramel flavor notes are unmissable, Renegade calling it a ‘coffee gelato’ finish; we’re keen to find some gelato to confirm!

We’re going to give this bean another go soon, but we’d love to hear your comments below!

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