Reporting Kathryn Larson
FERNDALE (WWJ) You’ve heard of wine tasting — but have you heard of coffee tasting?
Ferndale coffee shop Chazzano, 195 E. Nine Mile Road, which is celebrating its third year in business this month, percolates up more than just traditional joe.
Think fair trade brews, 40 different coffees, 20 different roasts — flavors and notes of chocolate, peaches, blueberry, cherry, cinnamon, spicy, nutty, dark, darker and darkest. Everything is organic, with no unhealthy additives.
And you don’t just drink it. You sniff it first, swish it around the palate, then slurp it down.
“Most people have not tasted more than one or two different notes and here we have some coffees that are crazy complex,” said Chazzano owner and coffee connoisseur Frank Lanzkron-Tamarazo. “Folgers is a bad word in my family.”
The Ferndale cafe has its share of people who stop in, but much of Chazzano’s business is wholesale, selling to country clubs, restaurants, and hotels.
No one knows more about it than Lanzkron-Tamarazo, who drinks 15 cups of joe a day. And to really enjoy the one-of-a-kind roasts –you have to attend a tasting, known as a Cupping Party. No matter what you try – you’re sure to find something you’ll like.
“Wine has 750 flavor profiles, coffee has 1,500, the same notes that you’re getting from wine, you get more from coffee,” Lanzkron-Tamarazo said.
Chazzano and his wife Lisa started their coffee journey in Cranford, New Jersey in 2002, with a few pounds of coffee in their garage, after having too many unsatisfactory post-dinner cups at their favorite restaurants.
“(That) blossomed into thousands of pounds of green unroasted coffee from 20 different countries,” Chazzano wrote on his website. “The neighbors loved the aroma of coffee roasting and savored the coffee in their cups. It was simply the best coffee they’d experienced.”
Chazzano Coffee moved from New Jersey to Chicago and ended up in Michigan — where it continues to generate a buzz.