Like coffee? Like cycling? Get this.
If starting a ride with a strong espresso is a good thing, then starting a ride with an espresso drawn from beans supplied by an ex-pro cyclist must be a double-plus good thing, right?
Magnus Maximus Special Viking Blend coffee is the creation of Magnus Backstedt, a pro cyclist for 13 years, whose palmares if you didn't know already includes Tour de France stage wins, a prestigious Paris-Roubaix victory, and Swedish national and time-trial jerseys. Now retired he lives in Wales, is a consultant for the Garmin-Slipstream team and works on his own cycling development squad.
A bag of Viking Blend coffee is available as whole beans or ground for either espresso or cafetiere use. Because we're posh and slight coffee-snobs with our own espresso-machine and grinder we opted for the beans, and snipping open the smart silver packet with the cool sticker on and stuffing a nose in there for that first intoxicating whiff the beans smelt deep and powerful, yet smooth, with no sharp or bitter after-notes, this bodes well.
Fire up the Rancilio.
Through the coffee-machine the beans produce a most excellent crema which again is a good sign. It's a reassuringly strong coffee with a punch hefty enough to fire you out the door on a drizzly training day but not so harsh that it puts a crust on your freshly applied chamois cream. Taste is warmly full-bodied yet smooth with buttery almost subtle honey textures. A handsomely rounded yet sturdy coffee then, just what we like. Any comparison to the 6' 4" bulk of the coffee's creator would be churlish here.
Brewing up on the stove-top made a less sophisticated shot, as is always the way, but it's still a pleasingly chunky brew, and remarkably resistant to burning while you're pumping tyres up instead of watching the pot.
Pricing is comparable to other 'proper' coffees, and as an extra bonus all of the proceeds go towards helping young riders as the Magnus Maximus coffee foundation directly funds the MagnusMaximusCoffee.com continental pro team. So every time you have a cup of coffee you're helping the future of cycling, you know it makes sense.
Magnus Maximus coffee is also available on subscription; sign up and a bag will be delivered to you on a weekly or monthly basis as you wish. This may be dangerous.
Make and model: Magnus Maximus Special Viking Blend Coffee
Price: 250g- £4, 500g - £8
Weight - 250g or 500g
Size tested: 500g, beans.
A real good quality coffee, with several teaspoons of cycling sweetness added
road.cc test report
Make and model: Magnus Maximus Coffee
Size tested: 250g
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
"Coffee is a passion of mine as it is of all pro bike riders. MAGNUS MAXIMUS is the result of many hours of research drinking coffee and eating cakes
(Not too many and only in the off season)."
The tall man has done his research well, you don't have to be a cyclist to enjoy this, but it helps.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Comes as beans, or ground for espresso or cafetiere use.
A good blend.
We've tried a lot of coffee beans in our time and this one comes well up there, strong but not eye-itchingly so, and some nice delicate flavours in there that even non coffee nerds noticed.
The bag of beans we had didn't last very long at all.
Compares well to other posh coffees, and you're putting something back into cycling too.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Perfectly, tasted good, and gave us the kick to get us out on the bike, or just through an, ahem, recovery morning.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The flavour and the cycling connection.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Nothing at all.
Did you enjoy using the product? Jitteringly so.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes, definitely, my mouse finger is hovering over the
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Wholeheartedly. To cycling fans and coffee geeks alike.
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
Is it too early to say it would make a great Christmas present?
About the tester
Age: 42 Height: 180cm Weight: 73kg
I usually ride: It varies as to the season. My best bike is: The one I\'m on at the time
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, cyclo cross, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mtb, Fun
Jo Burt has spent the majority of his life riding bikes, drawing bikes and writing about bikes. When he’s not scribbling pictures for the whole gamut of cycling media he writes words about them for road.cc and when he’s not doing either of those he’s pedaling. Then in whatever spare minutes there are in between he’s agonizing over getting his socks, cycling cap and bar-tape to coordinate just so. And is quietly disappointed that yours doesn’t. He rides and races road bikes a bit, cyclo-cross bikes a lot and mountainbikes a fair bit too. Would rather be up a mountain.