Saturday, May 14, 2016

Saturday Shout-Out: Dancing Moon Coffee

I've long had a love affair with coffee. It began in high school and remains quite strong today.

My kitchen has what I refer to as the "coffee closet" if that's any indication (my monthly coffee supply is on auto ship!) At our house, we drink everything from flavored coffees to robust brews. We mostly use our Keurig, because my husband and I have different java preferences. But we also own a lovely grind & brew coffee maker for those times when we want to indulge by the pot instead of by the cup.

So my interest was piqued when Dancing Moon Coffee asked me to give their boutique coffee a try. This is a new-to-market brand bent on introducing coffee lovers to "The Legendary Coffees of the World" via Dancing Moon offers six varieties and says its special roasting process delivers three times the antioxidant power of green tea.

A coffee with additional health benefits? I'm in!

Three friends bored with retirement launched the brand because they wanted something fun to do with their time that would allow them to pursue their love of coffee while giving back to a cause. Jamie Weldon, Nick Pronovich and Gunar Skillins give 5 percent of profits to the Semper Fi Fund, which provides financial assistance to wounded and critically ill veterans of all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces.

The entrepreneurs call Dancing Moon the "fourth wave" of coffee. Here's why: The first wave is commercially produced brands like Maxwell House or Folgers, followed by espresso drinks popularized by Starbucks. The third wave was artisan-made boutique coffee beans from specific growing regions.

Dancing Moon's beans come from a single source within each region and are certified organic and fair trade. This level of detail, according to the founders, is "java nirvana" for consumers who can tell the difference between an Ethiopian and a Kenya coffee. It also means the owners know exactly which acres on a specific farm produced their beans.

We tried the Full Moon Gourmet Blend which was smooth and rich with a hint of chocolate. This blend is a little bit smoky, too. The Full Moon was not too robust for me and just robust enough for my husband.

Dancing Moon roasters say this blend combines the "caramel sweetness of Central America and Colombian beans," a bit of Brazilian "for a hint of chocolate" and a small amount of Sumatra for "earthy complexity."

I'm certainly not a connoisseur when it comes to being able to taste the subtle differences in every coffee varietal, but if you appreciate a good cup of coffee – and want to buy a socially conscious brand – give Dancing Moon a try.

Mangia! Mangia!

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