FRESH CROP CENTRALS
Appreciating coffee as a seasonal product is very important to us; how fresh a coffee is at a given time of year will depend on its origin, with processing method having an influence too – for example ‘naturally’ processed coffees tend to be done later in the season than washed coffees. With different coffee harvests taking place throughout the year it’s exciting to celebrate this seasonality by highlighting different single origin coffees as and when they arrive.
Of course it’s also nice to be able to offer some coffees for longer, when we can; in this respect the way a green coffee is stored is a significant factor, along with how it was processed and where it has originated from in the first place. Because we only buy speciality grade, all our coffees are bagged in grain-pro lined sacks or come vacuum packed; this helps maintain and regulate moisture levels and most importantly ensures the green coffee keeps its flavour characteristics for between 9 and 12 months. Buying seasonally and in smaller lots helps us maintain our quality focus.
Through June and July most of our new arrivals have been coming in from Central America …
Most of the best coffees in El Salvador come from Santa Ana, with harvest at origin taking place from December to April. The annual crop arrives into the UK as early as May, but with the better lots coming out at the peak of the harvest we tend to see our coffees arriving at the roastery in June and July.
For the third year running we have sourced from the wonderful Finca Bosque Lya. Bourbon is the most prevalent variety on this farm – mainly red, but there is a little orange and yellow here too – though there are many other varieties grown for experimentation and diversity and these include pacamara, caturra and typica. An altitude growing range of 1,473 to 1,650 metres above sea level brings about coffees of great complexity that are sweet and lively with nuances of berries, tea rose and dark fruit such as plums. There is a little chocolate on the finish too. Find out more about this coffee here.
We are also very excited to offer a new coffee from Jose Antonio Salaverria’s farms, El Molina and El San Francisco. Like Bosque Lya, these farms are also located in the Apanecas in Santa Ana, a little further west and at a slightly lower altitude. We have purchased a lot of Jose’s ‘Los Luchadores’, a washed Pacamara. ‘Los Luchadores’ presents a deliciously tangy mandarin orange and tangerine citrus that leads to a clean finish with hints of brown sugar. This coffee is going out to our subscription customers in the first week of August and will be available on the webshop soon after.
Guatemala produces the highest percentage of classified, high quality coffee by volume in the world and we are very excited to bring you a new coffee from this origin. The coffee association of Guatemala, Anacafe, has been instrumental in the improvement of picking, processing and quality standards, with excellent information and resources available for farmers and a traceability database for buyers to connect with producers. Guatemala has been leading the way in Central America, with an emphasis on producing high quality washed coffee, experimenting with fermentation and highlighting the terroir.
This is the first time we have offered coffees from Guatemala, and we’re proud to be able to bring you a micro-lot from ‘El Rincon’. Originally owned and managed by Roberto Molina, who was the cousin of Jorge Vides (the first owner of Finca La Bolsa); both farms were bought and established around the same time. Roberto passed away in 2009 and his widow Yolanda Galindo is now taking care of the farm. With the help of Renardo Ovalle, who manages the farm, production has been transformed towards quality focused microlots. Many of the plants are old bourbon and caturra trees from the early years of the farm, but the farm manager is in the process of planting new bourbon and caturra plants, along with other exotic varietals. The micro-lot we have purchased is from a 5 hectare plot, and was picked over 7 days.