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A combination of great specialty coffee beans from:
Brazil: Creamy chocolate and nutty flavours.
Rwanda: bring a fruity sweetness.
Thailand: Adds the taste of notes of spices while maintaining cleanliness.
The Brazilian coffee beans come from 3 farms in the Norte Pioneiro and Norte Novo region in Parana State. These beans are processed “pulped natural”.
Pulped natural processing means the beans are depulped and dried/fermented in the sugary layer that still surrounds the beans, called mucilage. The coffee is dried until the right moisture content of 9%-11.5% before dehulled of the parchment, the last “jacket” that protects the bean from it’s surroundings, than packed and prepared for shipping.
While I (Jeroen) visited Brazil we passed by one of the 3 fazenda’s of this regional blend, Fazenda California owned by Luiz Roberto Saldanha Rodrigues, an agronomist and very knowledgeable, prize winning coffee producer from Jacarezinho, Paraná State.
Luiz has shown us the importance of science in coffee farming; exploring the nutrients and micro nutrients of the soil and of the plants creating highly resistant and quality producing crop. Science is a very powerful tool to move coffee quality forward, but only while connecting directly to the market that understands and appreciates specialty grade coffee.
Rwanda offers a great diversity of flavours, varying from hazelnut and creamy notes to the fruity, tealike notes and everything in between. Rwanda is a coffee producing country still very underexplored but with so much potential.
In collaboration with This Side Up Coffees, I was asked by the CBI (Central Bureau of Imports) to make a quality assessment of 46 coffees from over 30 Rwandes coffee producers and exporters. A great opportunity to gain insight of a specific coffee producing country. We presented our findings and our vision of the (Dutch) coffee trade at the KIT, Amsterdam and discussed opportunities to initiate and strenghten sustainable trading connections.
Besides the great taste of this ingredient, a big part of our pride in this coffee is the premium paid for “regenerative agroforestry” of the land owned by a big part of the coop members.
Research has shown the addition of more bio diversity creates a more resilient crop, a higher yield and of course a better tasting coffee. Projects like these can only find leverage by close collaboration, communication and understanding each others needs.
This initiative is a collaboration between This Side Up Coffee and Misozi Coffee from Rwanda.
Thailand has always been one of the countries never mentioned when spoken of specialty coffee, until recently that is. In the Chiang mai and Chiang Rai region a new generation of specialty coffee bars, roasters and consumers have become an example of how micro economics and locally sourced products can create a small network of change. Most quality coffee worldwide is produced for exporting purposes, but in these regions not anymore. In these regions farmers, roasters barista’s and even consumers closely communicate to jointly create a better product. This way most of the quality coffee finds its way to the local specialty coffee community. This pressurizes the Thai quality coffee prices because their local market is the global competitor but this is a very positive development and we’re more than happy to pay more to support and connect these local communities to you.
The Chiang Mai region is the home ground of Thawat Khoniak or Hneng for short. A second generation robusta farmer with the ambition to change the bad Thai robusta reputation.
Robusta has a negative reputation due to the mass coffee industry standards; producing for volume and neglecting quality in the process. Hneng, being a second generation robusta grower takes care and pride in his work, picking the cherries selectively and processing according to specialty arabica coffee standards. This process creates a fine robusta with a clean and pleasant taste with floral notes. Which we have never experienced before yet.