The Pact Advent Calendar – Day 25 and Final Thoughts.

Here we are at the end at last, we round out our little coffee journey with another Colombian offering and I swear I need to stick a note on the cupboards above my coffee machine that just says “TAKE A PICTURE OF THE SHOT” in huge letters as I forgot to do it yet again.  Doh.

This one was alright. It was neither particularly interesting, nor particularly unpleasant.  It was quite smooth, not particularly fruity or acidic, a perfectly pleasant coffee to start my day with and round out 25 days of reviews! I’m still not a massive fan of Colombian coffee, but I would like to thank Pact for introducing me to some that are not only not half bad, but I’d actually buy again!

So what did I think of the calendar as a whole? The calendar cost me £35, so that works out to a cost of £1.40 per cup of coffee. That, however, is a discounted price as we bought two calendars at once.  On their own they’re £39, for a cost of nearer to £1.60 per cup.

How did my opinions break down in the end?

  • Like – 15
  • Meh – 5
  • Dislike – 5

I’d consider that a pretty decent ratio all in all. Only five that I actively didn’t enjoy and twenty that I either really liked, or at least didn’t mind. Also, this let me identify some trends in my coffee drinking.  I don’t really care for coffees from Guatemala, nor do I enjoy ones that are honey processed.  Having so many different coffees in quick succession has let me identify trends that I might otherwise have missed.

I also think that if you (or a friend) want to get a bit more serious about coffee, then this is a really good place to start. It lets you try lots of different types for not a massive outlay of cash compared to buying full bags from lots of roasters.

Would I buy it again?  I would.

Would I post a review a day for it again? Maybe not. 🙂

That’s it for this year, thanks very much for taking the time to read my thoughts on all these different coffees and thanks again to Pact for producing a very nice calendar!


The Pact Advent Calendar – Day 24

Hey folks, sorry I ended up being a bit late with these reviews but here we are with the last two!

Nope. Didn’t care for this one at all. Again there was that weird flavour note somewhere in it that just makes me want to wrinkle my face up. It wasn’t terrible, not like day 23’s papaya offering, but this one did nothing for me at all.  My Mum’s down visiting for Christmas and she tried it as well and agreed with me that neither of us cared for it very much.  Guess I see where I get my dislike for Colombian coffees!

Moving on, one more day to go where I’ll tot up the scores and give an overall opinion of the calendar, if I thought it was a worthwhile purchase and if I’d buy one again.


The Pact Advent Calendar – Day 23

Today’s coffee is brought to you by “Aw crap, the last two days are both Colombian.” Have I mentioned I’m, not a big fan of Colombian coffee? What’s that?  I’ve mentioned it so many times I sound like a broken record? Oh, alright then.  Let’s talk about a coffee that isn’t Colombian! (How many times can I say ‘Colombian’ in one paragraph?)

Two more days to go, and this one goes straight into the “Dislike” column. I’m beginning to suspect I don’t care for honey processed coffees. This was another that goes solidly into the sharp, almost sour families of coffee.  Tasting notes are listed as “papaya”.  Now I haven’t the slightest clue what that actually tastes like, but if it’s anything like the coffee then I suspect I wouldn’t care for it all that much.

My wife didn’t mind it, so she ended up drinking the rest of my cup so it didn’t go to waste at least!

So, tomorrow is Christmas Eve proper, I hope wherever you are you have a good supply of lovely coffee laid in, your shopping is all done, presents all sorted and you’re looking forward to Christmas Day.  Talk at you all tomorrow.


The Pact Advent Calendar – Day 22

Back on track.  Like Thomas the Tank Engine.

Today’s coffee has an awesome name, however the connotations it brings up in my head aren’t great.  It makes me think of the Pak’ma’ra from Babylon 5, who were a race of smelly carrion eaters!  Luckily, this coffee is far nicer than that. Also, I will studiously NOT be mentioning “Who’s your little Pak’ma’ra” because there are things we don’t need to be thinking about.

Oh yes.  This one was lovely.  You open the bag and your nostrils are immediately hit with the smell of cherries and chocolate.  It’s not QUITE black forest gateau flavoured coffee, but it really was quite delicious.  It was so rich with cherry overtones it was almost boozy.  I always find coffees like this put me in mind of red wine.

Thoroughly enjoyed, another in the “Like” column, would definitely buy again, regret not having any more to try it in hot milk!


The Pact Advent Calendar – Day 21

Keeping this one brief, I’m afraid.  I’ve come down with a stinking head cold right now so unfortunately coffee sort of just tastes like coffee at the moment so I suspect I might not be being entirely fair to the next few days of the calendar as I can barely smell anything at the moment.  Oh well, it is what it is!

This one was….alright. I think it was good enough not to merit a “Meh” but nor was it one I’d desperately go out of my way to drink.  Now the card says the tasting notes were “stone fruit” and that’s what I detected, a sort of fruitiness to each mouthful, but nothing that I could specifically put a name to.

What’s interesting is that my friend with her calendar, she tried this one and described it as smokey, definitely not a word I’d have used for it!  Goes to show what a difference it can make between people and how dependent it is on how you make it as well.


The Pact Advent Calendar – Day 20

Today’s review is brought to you by the soundtrack to “King Arthur: Legend of the Sword” which is a legitimately great album which deserved a far better received movie than it got.  And now, because I can, here’s a nod to one of my all time favourite TV shows.



I know, I know, I forgot to take a photo of the shot again.  In my defence, it was 7am and I really, really needed some coffee.  It’s a shame that this one turned out to be…not great.  The tasting notes listed on the back are “raspberry and pineapple” and it also states that this coffee has been voted the best in Africa but yeah, it really didn’t do it for me at all.

It’s a car crash of strong, conflicting flavours, veering towards the sharper, more acidic end of the scale as you might expect with those sort of tasting notes.  The last mouthful was enough to make me screw my face up.  I’m not a fan of pineapple at the best of times (unless rolled in brown sugar, cinnamon and then grilled.  Bloody lovely) so I suspect I was never going to have a good time with this particular offering.

I’m thinking this is past “Meh” and into “Dislike”, honestly.  Ah well, they can’t all be winners as the saying goes!  I’ll be back tomorrow with, believe it or not, day 21.


The Pact Advent Calendar – Day 19

Show me the way to go home, I’m tired and I wanna go to bed. I had a lil drink about an hour ago…and it was actually coffee, so I’m not THAT tired.  Let’s take a look at what Pact had in store for me on day 19.

This one was…it was a bit weird. It was almost sweet and sour? In little sips it was lovely, with quite a sharp citrus taste.  But if you gulped it then it quickly became rather overwhelming.  This was not a coffee to be rushed, no sir.  You want a coffee to gulp, you go mosey on down to McDonalds, kid, and you tell them El Chollo sent ya and…I’m sorry, I appear to be channelling the spirit of a spaghetti western there.  Ahem.

Definitely one to be enjoyed in small amounts.  I wonder if having it in hot milk would mitigate the sharpness any.  We’ll be tentatively adding this one to the “like” column, but with the caveat that this would be an occasional coffee, at least for me, not an everyday one.


The Pact Advent Calendar – Day 18

Today’s review is brought to you by “Dear God, are we still doing these?  Why isn’t it Christmas yet?”

So this one.  This one was NICE.  I genuinely have not got a single complaint here. I could happily drink this one every day, every hour of the day, and likely die of caffeine poisoning with a big, happy smile on my face.  It was sweet, smooth, utterly delicious and I was rather disappointed when I finished the cup.

That’s one I definitely want to get again so I can try it with a milk based drink as well.  Top marks, highly recommended, hats off to Maria Pacas who has grown a simply lovely coffee.  Get yourself some if you get the chance!


The Pact Advent Calendar – Day 17

Today’s coffee is brought to you by a recently discovered musical track (Thank you BBC 6 Music).  You should check it out. It’s called “Yo Mae Leh” and it’s by a person? Group? Murder of Crows? Pod of Dolphins? Cyborg Horse? called Invisible Minds.

Link to music

And now for something completely different


I gotta admit, jury was out on this one to begin with.  I’m not a massive fan of dark roast coffees, and this one is definitely veering toward the darker side.  That said, it’s not unpleasant at all and the predominant tasting note I got from it was…treacle, I’d say.  Something dark and rich but not chocolatey or sweet, at least not for me.  I think I’d really like to try this one as a latte or a flat white, I think it’d be bloody lovely.

I am suffering from a stinking headcold so my tastebuds might not be working 100% at the moment but you know what it sort of reminded me of? Cinder toffee. It was like having a mouthful of that and then swirling in some coffee. Good stuff, Pact.


The Pact Advent Calendar – Day 16

I know, I know, late again!

My excuse is Star Wars. Star Wars is the best excuse for everything. Have you seen the new movie yet? If not, you should, just for the visual spectacle.  The story is mostly decent, with some slightly questionable decisions in the storytelling in places, but I enjoyed it more than the Force Awakens BECAUSE IT WASN’T A BLOODY REMAKE.

Anyway. Coffee.  This was an interesting one!

The blurb on the back talks about “lemony acidity” and I’d have to agree.  Wow, this one was JUICY.  We went way beyond acid, way behind fruity or floral and solidly into juicy territory.  The last mouthful was so potent it was like finishing your coffee and promptly swigging a glass of really tart fruit juice. This is another that I think wouldn’t be a regular purchase, but damn if I wanted something with a bit of ZING to it, this would be my go-to.

We’ll add this one to the “Like” column as well as my “I hope Pact stocks this regularly!” list.

To sum up where we are with the scores so far –

  • Like – 11
  • Meh – 3
  • Dislike – 2