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Two of the roasters whose coffees we feature here, Jason Yu of Dory Coffee Roasters and Chi Hong Lin of De Clieu Coffee, happen to be students of roaster Kelly Wang of Greenstone Coffee, someone whose coffees we’ve reviewed for several years. We learned about these relationships by coincidence when corresponding with Wang after both Yu and Lin had reported to her the success of their blends in this month’s testing. Wang was a specialty coffee roaster without plans to teach, but when a coffee she roasted received a 95-point score from us here at Coffee Review (a washed Ethiopia Yirgacheffe Banko Gotiti), she was invited to collaborate with Cultural University in Taipei to lead a roasting course. Lin was Wang’s very first roasting student in 2017; she met Yu in 2018 and has been working with him one-on-one. Wang has kept up with both roasters and their progress, and she has gone on to teach 11 courses and more than 70 beginning roasters the craft.

Wang also offered some thoughts about how “classic” espresso might be interpreted by various kinds of roasters in Taiwan. She says, “Both Jason and Chi Hong are third-wave roasters. Young people here can accept espresso with some acidity and fruit tone — so many creative espressos can be popular if baristas can promote the concept to more customers.” She goes on to say that “older-style” roasters think of “classic espresso” as dark-roasted and bittersweet, hopefully with some chocolate notes. But she adds that, “Young roasters don’t like this style. They prefer lighter-roasted, fruitier coffees, both in the straight shot and in milk.”