A brew and a book

I’m a bit of a coffee fiend at the moment, especially to keep me going when we’ve had a few sleepless nights with the little lady! When I discovered that one of my favourite foodie brands, The Black Farmer, was launching a new coffee range, I was really keen to give it a try.

I thought I’d team it with a quick book review, in the interests of promoting the importance of ‘me time’ which is important for all of us. I personally find reading a great way to relax and switch my mind away from everyday stresses, and if you feel the same, then see what you think of my book review of The Tattooist of Auschwitz.

The Brew

The Black Farmer range offers two different sources of origin to choose from, Caribbean and Africa. You can pick from either roasted and ground, or the whole bean version. In the Caribbean selection you’ll find Costa Rica, Dominican Republic and Cuba, and the African box features Kenya, Ethiopia and Rwanda. Each box contains six sealed sachets, so if you want to use it over time, you don’t have to worry about losing the flavour.

I’ve had Caribbean coffee lots of times before (Cuban is a particular favourite of mine, especially after spending a week in Cuba many years ago), but I haven’t really tried African coffee. Interestingly I preferred the African varieties to the Caribbean ones, as I felt they had a really deep flavour. Although they were strong, they were also rich, which I appreciated as I sometimes find strong coffee can just become rocket fuel.

As well as tasting great, the coffee production uses Eco Roast technology, a zero-waste solution that harnesses the energy from used coffee grounds,  and uses it to roast fresh batches of coffee. What a very clever idea! And it’s great to see brands working hard to improve their sustainability and eco-credentials.

As we have a coffee machine with a grind function and a cafetiere, I’ve been able to try out both different types and I couldn’t detect any differences in the taste. Admittedly I ply my coffee with a load of milk and a spoon of sugar, so perhaps I’m not the best judge!

As part of the move into hot drinks, The Black Farmer has also launched a range of teas. They are variants on tried and tested tea favourites, such as Earl Grey with Elderflower and Mint Infusion with a Twist of Nettle. This is my favourite of the new range, with a strong mint flavour, but the combination of the different herbs and nettle add a natural sweetness and extra punch. 

If you’re into real coffee and like your hot drinks to be a cut above your average cup, then I think you’d enjoy the new range from The Black Farmer. It’s a bit pricier than some of its competitors, but if you’re looking for something new to try, and want to support a brand that’s focused on the environment, then I’d highly recommend you try this range.

The Book

My husband chose this book for me as a birthday gift and I’m really happy that he did. The Tattooist of Auschwitz a beautiful tale of love, yet it’s set against a backdrop of horrendous cruelty and inhumanity. It focuses on the memories of Lale Sokolov, a Slovakian Jew who was imprisoned in Auschwitz during the Holocaust, and the brutality of life (or more commonly, death) in the concentration camp.

Yet somehow amidst all the barbaric treatment of those in the camp, Lale met and fell in love with his future wife. This true story shares some of his innermost thoughts and feelings about this unimaginable time in history, and the danger he put himself in to ensure the survival of others, including the woman he loved.

At times it’s not an easy read due to heartbreaking realities of what took place over those years. Yet Lale’s story is one that will linger in your mind long after you finish the last page; a tale overwhelming disturbing, but with a happy ending and one that reminds of how even those faced with death can find courage and the hope to go on.

Have you read this book? Or tried the new coffee or tea from The Black Farmer? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Sarah
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