Review of Forty Weight Mohka Java – A Blend Worth Drinking

If you’ve read any of my other coffee blend posts, then you know that I’m not a huge fan of them. It takes a special blend to wow me. Forty Weight Coffee Roasters did just that with this 2-bean Mohka Java blend!

Forty Weight Roasters located in Ithaca, New York, isn’t that far from where I live. They frequently have a booth at the Syracuse Farmers Market on Saturday mornings, but for a variety of reasons, I never tried their brewed coffee samples. That is until a couple of weeks ago.

When I see brewed coffee samples at a booth, I hope the roasters have one of their awesome single origin coffees brewed. Usually, though, it’s one of their blends. I get it; most people want to taste a coffee similar to what they drink…mass marketed generic coffee. I’d rather experience a new taste sensation rather than the same old thing.

So when the woman at Forty Weight’s farm market booth (I believe it’s one of the owners’ mother by the way) said the sample was a Mohka Java blend, part of me was disappointed. Nonetheless, I was intrigued by the name, after all the Mohka Java name has a bit of reputation.


Mocha, Mokha, or Mukha, Yemen is famous for coffee regardless of how you spell the name. I didn’t realize until much later that Forty Weight spelled their blend with the H and K reversed. Not sure if that is to get around copyrights, their interpretation, or a mistake. Maybe they’ll comment on this post and let us know?

But how surprised I was once I tasted the sample. Instead of a generic tasting coffee, my taste buds were greeted with bright fruity notes with a sweet, mild chocolate aftertaste. Immediately I picked up a bag and purchased it at the farmers market discounted price of only $12 a bag!

Forty Weight Coffee Roasters

Unlike many coffee roasters, Forty Weight doesn’t operate any cafes. Instead, they concentrate on wholesale, selling their roasted beans to espresso bars, cafes, restaurants, and specialty grocery and food markets.

That said, quality, innovation, and adding new product is very important to both owners, Andrew Ballard and Matt Marks. Read about their story and philosophy here.

forty weight labelAnother thing I like about Forty Weight is their packaging. Don’t get me wrong, coffee should be about taste, but for me, at least, is the story behind the company and how they market and present their product. Pride in how their product looks on the shelve is often a clue that they also take pride in roasting great coffee.

The clean white bag (see below) with a neatly placed label with an excellent explanation of the coffee entices me to pick up the coffee bag and read what it has to say. Same with the logo on the bag, which is unique (at least I’ve never seen it before) in that it’s printed on fabric, similar to a patch you’d put on a jacket.

co2 sealThe bag is heavy duty foil with a CO2 release valve and seals with a high-quality zip lock – one that won’t rip away from the bag. Again, Forty Weight uses quality packaging so it can be shipped to its customers and they can protect their coffee once they receive the beans.

Their concern for producing a quality product and keeping it that way says a lot to me about Forty Weight.


Review of Forty Weight Roasters Mohka Java Coffee

coffee beansI’m not going to get into the details of the history of the original Mukha Java coffee, but it’s well known that Yemen coffee producers would bring coffee grown in Java, Indonesia into the port and then blended them with local Yemen beans. Read the story on this website.

Forty Weight summarizes this story in their description, both on the bag and website. However, they don’t necessarily say that their blend contains Indonesian and Yemen beans.

Again, maybe Andrew or Matt could comment below and fill us in.

Aroma

Whatever and wherever the beans came from, the aroma from the bag is amazing. The coffee aroma right from the bag for me has notes of sweet plums. The smell that wakes you up from when you’re still sleepy as you walk into the kitchen in the morning.

Even better news is that the ground beans have a stronger aroma like milk chocolate covered fruit. Every morning I stick my nose right into the grinder and breathe in the aroma.

It’s so good. Just what I want from a coffee.

Brewing Mohka Java

I ran these beans through a variety of brewing methods. My favorite way to brew Mohka Java beans is to grind them fine, the fifth grind setting on my Portex grinder and use the Hario V60 at a ratio of 16.1:1.

A bit stronger than I normally do. Don’t forget to account for the volume of water that the coffee grounds absorb.

The French Press or Cleaver Dripperalso make a good cup of coffee but tends to have a late bitterness that coffee brewed in the Hario doesn’t have.

Taste

Before we get to the taste, I want to add that the aroma from the brewed coffee also smells sweet and fresh.

The taste is bright with a slight acidity as the label on the bag describes. The aroma to me is similar to plums, but the taste is more like sweet cherries, maybe it’s the slight acidity that reminds me more of cherries than plums, but whatever the reason it tastes amazing.

Unlike most blends, this coffee has a unique taste profile.

It’s not trying to add different tasting notes to blend them into something else, it’s a blend that is trying to be itself and unique.

The aftertaste is sweet and has slight chocolate notes. As mentioned previously, if steeped too long, the coffee can get a little bitter.

Bean & Roasting Info

Roast Level: Medium-light
Producers: No information
Country of Origin: No information
Region: No information
Variety: No information
Processing method: Mix of natural and washed beans
Growing Altitude: No information
Roaster tasting notes: Deep Chocolate, bold body, with tones of red fruit and citrus acidity.




Summary of Forty Weight Mohka Java Coffee

Forty Weight’s Mohka Java is a two-bean blend with an aroma that will knock your socks off and a taste that is as good as it smells.

A flow-through dripper is your best bet. Compared to my regular grinder settings for my Hario V60, I used a slightly coarser grind, yet the aroma and flavor from the beans are still released into your cup of coffee.

The aftertaste is sweet and pleasant but can get a little be bitter if brewed too strong or too long.

After drinking this Mohka Java, I’ll start to take coffee bean blends more seriously.

Mohka Java won’t be the last coffee I buy from Forty Weight Coffee Roasters.

Have you tried Forty Weight’s Mohka Java? Don’t forget to share this review with your friends (use the buttons along the side) and leave a comment below and let us know what you think of this coffee.

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The Coffee Pragmatist

No-nonsense advice on artisan and speciality coffee. From bean to cup, though I prefer mugs. Get how-to advice, reviews, recommendations, interviews and discounts on coffee beans from roasters around the country. 

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