Over the past 4 years, Huckleberry has been working to build a stronger relationship with the AProCafé El Grano growers association in the Lake Atitlán region of Guatemala. These growers produce our Atitlán El Grano coffee, which we love dearly, but we've also been working on some other projects with the cooperative so that we can grow together. For the past two years we've helped the growers with their leaf rust prevention efforts, assisted with other quality practices, and and this is our third year paying higher prices for exceptional coffee from individual farmers. This is our second year roasting Pedro Trejo's coffee.
Like all of the farmers in AProCafé, Don Pedro has great terrain and altitude for coffee growing, plants his coffee trees under shade, and farms using organic, sustainable practices. Our other microlot growers live a bit further from the Lake Atitlán than Pedro, and process their coffee on-farm largely because those farms are a royal pain to get to. Pedro, however, lives and grows coffee in the town of San Pedro, and delivers his cherry to Valle de Eskol, the same wet mill where AProCafé processes our main lot from the group.
Like many farmers in the Lake Atitlán region, Pedro doesn't own one, large farm, but several small, scattered parcels along the slopes of Volcan San Pedro, ranging from a high 1650 meters above sea level to a very, very high 2000 meters. This past year we met with Pedro and visited one of his plots, and it's fairly obvious why his coffee has so much potential. First off, high altitude always helps, and when walking through other growers' plots to Pedro's the contrast in farming practices was obvious. Pedro's plot was a lesson in precision - great shade cover, large compost holes next to each tree, and perfectly pruned and spaced coffee plants.
We’re pretty stoked on microlot year two from Pedro Trejo, and we're happy to feature it first for 2017. We think it's both complex and balanced, with notes of brown sugar, tangerine, stone fruit, and raisin.
$ 19.80 $ 22.00
Gicherori PB is the coffee of the month for October!
There's no denying it - we're suckers for juicy, bright, and fruit-forward coffees. So, we always look forward to new coffees from Kenya, and our first Kenya of the year, a peaberry lot from the Gicherori factory, is exactly what we've been waiting for.
The best Kenyan coffees are mouthwateringly complex - a combination of fruity brightness, deep sweetness, creamy mouthfeel and savory complexity that's unmatched anywhere in the coffee-growing world. High altitudes and rich, red clay soil certainly contribute to these flavors, but Kenya's unique tradition of excellence is also largely a story of plant varieties and meticulous processing.
Kenya's government has taken a keen interest in not just coffee productivity, but also quality, working with Scott Laboratories from the 1930s-1960s to identify varieties based on both flavor and productivity. This work has continued to this day with work on disease-resistant plants, but some of the varieties from this initial study, SL-28 and SL-34 in particular, are considered quality gems. Additionally, Kenyan wet mills, called factories, have a unique approach to removing the fruit from the coffee seed that we eventually roast: extended double fermentation, two washes, and a post-wash soaking period before slow, raised bed drying. In simpler terms, the best Kenyan producers add a few steps to the washing process that help draw out the savory complexity that makes Kenyan coffees so unique, while also helping to create a super clean, juicy cup.
Additionally, Kenyan producers separate their coffees by bean size. AA are the largest, then AB, then C, and PB refers to the peaberries - coffee cherries that develop with one rather than the normal two seeds per cherry. Some folks will tell you that peaberries are automatically better, or on the opposite end, that AA is always the best. We won't go there - when we cup AA, AB, and PB lots from the same producers, there's no one grade that always lands on top. But, they do tend to taste different and roast different, so we love that separation.
This lot from Gicherori is all peaberry, and we think it's delicious. This coffee is grown by 900 farmers from the Kibugu Farmers Cooperative Society, and washed and at that cooperative's Gicherori factory (wet mill) on the slopes of Mt Kenya in Embu County. It's deeply sweet with a bit of savory spice (think molasses), with loads of juicy, bright, and sweet fruit flavors. That combination of sweet, savory, and bright can be a bit much for folks who like their coffee unsurprising, but if you revel in coffee's potential for unique flavors, Gicherori PB is probably going to be your jam. It's our jam, and we think it tastes like raspberries, limeade, peach jam, and molasses. Weird? Maybe. Tasty? Most def.View full product details
We love the balance of approachability and jaw-dropping flavors that great Colombian coffees can exhibit, and Las Brisas has been one of our favorite Colombians for the past few years running. This August we had the chance to visit the group, and we're looking forward to not just roasting this year's harvest, but also many harvests ahead. In this crop we taste bright green grape and citrus, balanced by sweet flavors of stone fruit, cherry cobbler, and caramel. All of this makes this an exciting coffee for the nerds, and also a friendly coffee for less-seasoned specialty coffee drinkers, too.
Las Brisas is grown by growers in ASOQUEBRADON growers group, based around the town of Rioblanco, Tolima. This area sits near the juncture of Colombia's three mountain ranges, or cordilleras, and the name Las Brisas refers to the strong winds blowing through the region.
We roast quite a bit of coffee grown by small producers. Las Brisas and our other Colombian coffees are unique in that smallholder farmers mill, wash, and dry their coffee individually, at their farms, rather than at a centralized wet mill. Most of our other smallholder coffees, like Guatemala Atitlán el Grano, Ethiopia Adado, and Rwanda Kanzu, for example, are picked and delivered in its cherry to a centralized washing station, where it is processed collectively. Individual processing can create challenges for consistency and quality, but luckily our export partner Caravela's regional team of Davier and Wilfer work together with the growers to improve farming and washing practices, to help ensure that the coffee is delicious. All of the farmers who make up Las Brisas are well-practiced in proper fermentation and washing, and dry their coffees on raised beds for slow, even drying and under cover for protection from Colombia's rains.
Careful growing, proven varieties, excellent terroir, and skilled processing help create an impeccable, dynamic coffee that we think you'll love. Las Brisas has sweetness that lovers of more basic, milk-friendly coffees will enjoy, but also packs a punch of stellar, fruity brightness and the juicy flavors that excite the roasting team here at Huckleberry!
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Santa Maria is one of two coffees from the Cooperativa de Caficultores de Dota (CoopeDota) in Costa Rica that Huckleberry will roast this year. While El Cedral Natural is stunning and fruit-forward, Santa Maria is more subtle, but equally delicious. This washed coffee exudes balance while maintaining complexity, and showcases why great washed Central American coffees are among the most versatile and easy to drink. Santa Maria has milk-friendly flavors of walnut and creamy nougat, while also packing plenty of grape-like fruity complexity and orange-like brightness.
Costa Rica has been a global leader in the push for a more sustainable coffee trade, and within Costa Rica, CoopeDota has been a leader among producers. In 2011 the cooperative produced the world's first certified carbon neutral coffee, and is known for its work to reduce both its carbon and water footprints. To that aim, while we say that this coffee is washed, it's actually eco-pulped. Most washed coffees use fermentation and a whole lot of water to remove the coffee seed's inner fruit (mucilage) before drying. CoopeDota forgoes the fermentation breakdown of that sugary fruit, and runs its coffee through a machine called an EcoPulper, which uses dramatically less water than traditional washing. All in all, as our head of education David Fasman learned while visiting the cooperative earlier this year, reducing water use throughout the coffee's journey is a point of pride for CoopeDota.
We're super excited to begin showcasing CoopeDota's coffees in 2017 - not just because the cooperative is a leader in sustainable practices, but also because the coffee is damn tasty. Santa Maria has a lot going for it - fruity pop, milk-friendly nuttiness, creamy body and depth. This coffee is going to be a go to for us in the mornings while warming up the roaster, on Fetco at our Pecos St cafe, and makes for a delicious single origin espresso, too.View full product details
Bright, juicy, and refreshing, washed Ethiopian coffees might be the perfect coffees for summer.
Ask a coffee roaster what their favorite coffee growing region is, and quite a few of us will mention Yirgacheffe. Ethiopia is the birthplace of coffee - this is where the arabica species originally evolved, and where it still grows wild - and the combination of heirloom varieties, high altitudes, and meticulous washing create coffees that are uniquely light and vibrant, particularly in comparison to the Central American coffees more common here in the USA. And within Ethiopia, Yirgacheffe has a well-earned reputation for producing some of the country's best, brightest, and most floral coffees.
Adado is the name of a washing station in the Yirgacheffe town of Shara, and our first washed coffee from Ethiopia's 2017 harvest. Hundreds of smallholder farmers from Shara sell their coffee cherry to Adado washing station, where it is washed and dried on raised beds to exacting precision. It's super clean and sweet, with flavors of cane sugar and watermelon, and packs the fruity, mouthwatering brightness we've come to love from our favorite Yirgacheffes. On top of the cane sugar and watermelon, we taste key lime and peach, with a delicate, rose-like florality.
We gush over washed Ethiopian coffees, but to be fair, they're not the first beans we reach for if we're looking to pair with milk. But, if you like your coffee black, if you like your coffee refreshing, and you like your coffee complex and dynamic to the last drop, Adado is the ticket.View full product details