About the coffee
Sitio Sao Pedro
Minas Gerais is a hugely efficient agricultural region; creating many products such as dairy, eggs and citrus fruit. This efficiency is also transferred into coffee, creating a very consistent and high quality product, but with a very homogenous flavour profile. This is not necessarily in line with the values of the speciality coffee market, paying higher prices for separation of microlots and experimentation, leading to varying and exciting character in the cup. This lot is a great example of this fledgling movement in Brazil, in this case sourced and supported by our partners at Nordic Approach. This lot was picked manually, aiming for a very even cherry ripeness, also unusual in efficient and machine-dominated Minas. Thiago fermented this lot for 72 hours in an open tank, not allowing the temperature to rise above 38°C before mechanically drying. This allows for a rich and sweet profile, with a wild edge of acidity and spice character. One of the more interesting lots we have tasted from Brazil recently, and one we’re happy to share with you.
Mango, Fig & Cinnamon
Lourdes de Fatima Souza has worked in coffee all her life, and is now the proud matriarch of a coffee producing family. Lourdes has two sons; Carlos has a farm just the other side of the main road along with his wife, and Thiago works at Sitio Sao Pedro along with his mother. Thiago is very interested in fermentation, and has been helping to create new expressions of his mother’s coffees. He continuously experiments with different fermentation temperatures and times in small batches, before drying mechanically. In this region of Brazil, we find a very clear ‘norm’, of very chocolate and nut-driven profiles, obviously very clean and well-processed naturals, but this makes it very difficult for producers to differentiate themselves in terms of flavour.
|Producer||Lourdes de Fatima Souza|
The natural, or dry process, is the traditional process, going back generations. When accomplished in a controlled and careful manner, dry processed coffees can produce flavour experiences not found in wet processed coffees, deep fruits and florals, normally with heavier mouthfeel and lower acidity. The cherries are first sorted, and then laid out on in thin layers (2-6 cm) on raised drying beds. These are almost always used for high quality naturals, as they aid airflow around the coffee as it dries, enabling more even drying. It is very important that coffees are sorted very carefully early on in the drying process, as all of the cherries quickly turn dark brown, making it impossible to separate under and overripe cherries. The cherries are turned frequently to avoid mold formation or over-fermentation, until they reach a moisture content of below 20%, and the outer cherry layer shrinks and blackens. This process takes between 2 and 4 weeks, depending on weather conditions.
About La Cabra
A focus on raw material
If we don’t feel that a coffee suits our style or what we like to present, we simply won’t buy it. Sometimes this leads to issues in green buying; we have to pay very close attention, to a level of green quality that will support this approach, and to how this will develop over the life of a coffee. We are required to focus heavily on the freshness of coffee, both green and roasted, to avoid introducing taints into our cups. We always use clean and fresh water, of an ideal mineral content to present the coffee in its best possible light. Once we have the correct roasting profile, water, and coffee age, the act of brewing is much more simple. A wide variance in brewing parameters can still produce delicious and transparent cups. It is also important to note that this is not always the most consistent approach. The coffee is laid completely bare, so any flaw with the raw material is clearly on show. We could often develop some coffees slightly more, to make them more approachable or easy to work with, but wavering from our philosophy like this would compromise our commitment to complete transparency in coffee.Read more