Known for riding off the front of group rides only to be caught in the first mile, CJ got back on a road bike and realized he must win the Donut Derby at least once in his life. Regularly pledging he's "not a climber," he can be found as a regular attendee of Trexlertown's Thursday Night Training Criterium or sitting on the couch watching Paris-Roubaix reruns. CJ has been a constant rider of the Hell of Hunterdon in New Jersey and races the Tour of the Battenkill before going into seasonal hiding on cross-country ski trails.

Review: Backyard Beans Punch in the Face Dark Roast

Review: Backyard Beans Punch in the Face Dark Roast

Catching a tailwind on a highly enjoyable road, I could not help but think how the middle portion of today’s ride was quite like the cup of coffee I had finished prior to riding. A few days ago I tracked down a bag of coffee from a local roaster who produces a lovely canned nitro elixir of the same name. Once the office supply of coffee had dwindled to a couple of broken beans and a lonely scooper, the bag was cut open and the grinding began.

 

The summer heat has returned for the middle portion of August. That is no shocking declaration. The problem is our incapability to continue to have enough stock of cold coffee around to offset the summer heat. Oftentimes we shake up cans of Backyard Beans’ Punch in the Face - roasters from nearby Lansdale, PA - to activate the nitro bubbles upon pouring. It’s viscous texture and dense flavor make it difficult to avoid cracking into another can. The flavor and coolness beg to be consumed in two sips. No wonder a bag of Punch in the Face beans were poured into the grinder to make up for lost refrigerated coffee. We brewed up a pot of the dark roast then set about testing its jabs and upper cuts.

 

After the coffee was finished we headed down a road appropriately named Three Mile Run Road. I’m sure one can guess how long the road is, however the day came together as a lovely tailwind scooted us along the manageable terrain. Though it isn’t completely flat, it is a lovely experience to take at speed. A matter of fact, this road was sought out with hopes to fly along the few miles lined with dense trees and recent repaving. As quickly as the road was tackled, it abruptly ended, intersecting with a major thoroughfare. After hammering for a few minutes, the waiting time to safely cross the major intersection is nearly equaled. We then drop the pace on the other side.

As usual there was an absurd amount of enjoying the freshly roasted bean aroma from the bag. We even got the bag in that sweet spot of the two week window since roasting.

As usual there was an absurd amount of enjoying the freshly roasted bean aroma from the bag. We even got the bag in that sweet spot of the two week window since roasting.

Much like Three Mile Run Road, Punch in the Face coffee is hard hitting. Despite giving the road a spirited effort, it fried the legs. More aptly it was like a punch right on the kisser to wake up the day. We like our brews intense and flavorful and Punch in the Face is exactly that. This is one bold cup of coffee set to race pace. What is enjoyable is the immediate soft exit. Just like a recovery after a hard effort, Punch in the Face recedes to let one regain composure. And just like their nitro coffee, we want to return to the coffee. It might be hot outside, and the weather is solidifying chilled caffeine concoctions, but sometimes the hot brew is so good, it’s worth breaking a little sweat. 

 

Truth be told the spirited effort along Three Mile Run Road could be chalked up to the caffeine boost of Punch in the Face. We would like to think we were punching the road in the face. It’s denial, really. Naturally we were enjoying the slight drubbing created by the effort. When the thought of how the road was like the morning cups of coffee, the velvety smoothness of tail end of Punch in the Face got us through the final mile. If only every hard effort could end so tantalizingly.  

Review: Shimano Di2 Wireless Unit Module

Review: Shimano Di2 Wireless Unit Module

Review: Giant TCR Advanced Pro 0 Disc

Review: Giant TCR Advanced Pro 0 Disc