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Java

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Java Sunda Garut

This coffee is the result of a small-yet-ambitious project, to build a small outpost in the oldest coffee growing region in Java, work with the local farmers, and wet-process the coffee in tiny batches to high standards. It's the work of several people, Eko Purnomowidi who supervised the project, with oversight from Dariusz Lewandowski and support from Edo Gurdian and Uden Banu. Two Indonesians, a Costa Rican and a Pole; all crazy enough to pursue build this small coffee camp. Java Sunda (West Java) was the original coffee area, but you would find very, very few trees here of late. All the coffee is grown in East Java, where all the big estates are. All Java sold in the US is basically East Java coffee. But farmers in Java Sunda always kept small coffee plots, and there was one commodity quality mill near Bandung that would buy coffee (but not for much). Yet here among the Ateng and Jember were some old Typica trees, the original Typica! (Java was the first destination for coffee from Yemen, with a stopover in India). This is just the first year of the project, and there was so little coffee we could create only 2 lots. This is the smaller lot, and is from the Kelompok farmers group in the Garut area. It is on the slopes of the Papandayan volcano, with coffee planted from 1400-1550 meters. All these coffees were meticulously hand sorted, hiring local youths in the area. It drove up the cost of the coffee, but resulted in a better cup, and is in the spirit of this project to improve coffee and community in the area!

This coffee is distinct from other Indonesias, and from the usual West Java coffees. The aromatics are almondy in the light roasts, with a more chocolate dry fragrance at Full City roast level. The wet aroma has plum and raisin fruit accents in the lighter roasts, and more of that bittersweet chocolate as the roast approaches second crack. The coffee has a very nice floral hibiscus note on the break. Light roasts have this nice floral and fruit brightness, hibiscus-honeysuckle and a general "fruit punch" suggestion. But at these light roasts the body can seem a bit thin. Darker roasts are a bit flatter in the flavor profile, but develop the aforementioned chocolate roast taste, and have lingering raisin sweetness.



This coffee is part of our direct trade Farm Gate pricing transparency program.

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Ateng cultivar at Garut.
Country: Java, Indonesia
Grade: 1
Region: Garut, Java Sunda
Processing: Wet Process
Arrival Date: November 2010 Arrival, Grain Pro
Appearance: 1.2 d/300gr, 16-17 Screen
Varietal: Ateng, Typica
Intensity/Prime Attribute: Mild-Medium intensity / Balance of brightness, body and flavor
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Java Merapi Robusta

If you want that intense, old school continental espresso flavor, the type that makes the coffee cut through the steam milk like a knife, nothing quite does it like a robusta. The issue is that robusta coffee is the second-class citizen of the coffee world. Rightly so! Even in it's most perfect state, it lacks the aromatics, sweetness, and clean-cup flavors of a well-processed, high-grown arabica. But part of the problem is that robusta coffees are not treated well, processed very poorly, and dried badly, resulting in dirty, rubbery, musty flavors. This Java Merapi Robusta is part of our ongoing effort to put the best face on robusta, specifically for those who want to use it as 10-20% of a classic espresso blend. The robustas we offer can be brewed too, ideally in French Press. But it's not the coffee I would want to drink every day, to be frank. This coffee is different than many robustas, processed in the wet hull Sumatra style. It comes from the area of the Banjarsari and Gesing Villages, located in Kandangan and Jumo districts of Central Java Province (about 50km from Merapi Volcano, the most active volcano in the world). Altitude is 600 - 800 meters and the processing is done on the Took Bandung farm. The trees themselves grow on the roughly 3000 hectares surrounding the estate. The region is in the process of obtaining Organic certification.

The dry fragrance is clearly robusta-like, a bit earthy and leathery, but also with chocolate milk notes and roasted nuts. The wet aroma is also nutty, with earthy hints. The break releases rustic spice and tobacco notes, and a woody/chaffy smell as well. The cup flavors are a composite of bakerís chocolate, brown rice, Brazil nut, and toasted grains. It's not a sweet coffee, but it is attractive as bittering chocolate notes can be attractive in the right context. There is something more like burned sugar than raw sugar in this cup. The body is very oily, palpably viscous. The acidity is very low, but the cup finishes with bit of astringent tightness that, oddly, gives it some approximation of acidity. It's an unusual taste experience, and I am sure those who like the aggressive nature of an Aged Sumatra might enjoy a French Press of this, roasted to FC+. For me it has a place in certain espresso blends where the bitterness of the coffee will be offset by the lactose sweetness of some steamed milk. You can't really judge this coffee by the score (very low), but you need to look at it by it's use; primarily an espresso accent.





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Robusta fruit, flower and leaf in Indonesia from my last trip.
Country: Java, Indonesia
Grade: 1
Region: Central Java
Processing: Wet-hulled (Giling Basah)
Arrival Date: January 2011 Arrival
Appearance: 1 d/300gr, 17-18 Screen
Varietal: Coffea Canephora (Robusta)
Intensity/Prime Attribute: Bold intensity / Viscous and oily body, complex bitterness
Roast: Full City+ or darker.
Compare to: Typical scents and flavors for robusta coffees, but well-processed and quite useful in certain espresso blends
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Java Kajumas Organic Taman Dadar

This coffee hails from the Kajumas area in East Java, and is the first certified Organic Java coffee we have seen this season, or offered. We received the samples alongside the standard "Government Estate" lots, and it was far more interesting than those old standards. Private Estate Java farms are supposed to be inferior to the 4 Government Estate plantations. They are supposedly lower-grown, not processed or prepared as well, for those who want to save a few pennies. But this is the 3rd time I have picked a Private over the PTP (Government) estates. Perhaps it is not a fair comparison because the Govt estates are washed coffees and this is processed differently. It is a wet-hulled coffee, called Giling Basah in Indonesia. I know the two terms sound similar, but the resulting coffees could not be more different. This Java cups like a good Sumatra coffee from the Aceh area. Wet-hulled process means increased body and more rustic sweetness than a traditional wet-process lot.

Expect the cup character of a good Sumatra coffee. The dry fragance has a sweet woody quality, sorghum syrup and molasses sweetness, and a bit of maple syrup to it. It's definitely Indonesian in character, with natural herb and spice indications in the wet aroma, as well as a foresty earth scent. There's a somewhat winey fruited note on the break. The cup is very Sumatra-like, a good Sumatra that is. It has rustic sweetness, but really it's all about body here. This has a thick body, almost oily in mouthfeel. The acidity is very low. Again, dewy, mossy forest floor notes are primary here, and there is just the slightest hint of monsooned coffee flavor. Java coffees are unbalanced by nature, extremely low acidity means they are all tenor-to-bass range, no bright notes. The finish has that heavy sweetness, molasses, mulling spice and tree-bark herbs. This may be exactly what you are looking for in the cup, low acid, mild flavors, or you might want to use it as a backdrop to add body to a bright and wild Ethiopia coffee; or a classic Mohka Java with a Yemeni lot.





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Ateng coffee leaves, Indonesia
Country: Java, Indonesia
Grade: 1
Region: East Java, Kajumas and Curah Tatal
Processing: Wet-hulled (Giling Basah)
Arrival Date: February 2011 Arrival
Appearance: .4 d/300gr, 17-18 Screen
Varietal: Djember Typica, Catimor
Intensity/Prime Attribute: Mild-Medium intensity / Viscous body, rustic flavors
Roast: Full City to Full City+ to Vienna. Roast it to develop the maximum chocolate bitterness without making it ashy or carbony. FC+ is best, I feel.
Compare to: Very Sumatra-like in character, with all the body and deep-toned cup flavors. Javas don't score high, but they are a welcome relief from acidic coffees.
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Java Kajumas Organic Taman Dadar

This coffee hails from the Kajumas area in East Java, and is the first certified Organic Java coffee we have seen this season, or offered. We received the samples alongside the standard "Government Estate" lots, and it was far more interesting than those old standards. Private Estate Java farms are supposed to be inferior to the 4 Government Estate plantations. They are supposedly lower-grown, not processed or prepared as well, for those who want to save a few pennies. But this is the 3rd time I have picked a Private over the PTP (Government) estates. Perhaps it is not a fair comparison because the Govt estates are washed coffees and this is processed differently. It is a wet-hulled coffee, called Giling Basah in Indonesia. I know the two terms sound similar, but the resulting coffees could not be more different. This Java cups like a good Sumatra coffee from the Aceh area. Wet-hulled process means increased body and more rustic sweetness than a traditional wet-process lot.

Expect the cup character of a good Sumatra coffee. The dry fragance has a sweet woody quality, sorghum syrup and molasses sweetness, and a bit of maple syrup to it. It's definitely Indonesian in character, with natural herb and spice indications in the wet aroma, as well as a foresty earth scent. There's a somewhat winey fruited note on the break. The cup is very Sumatra-like, a good Sumatra that is. It has rustic sweetness, but really it's all about body here. This has a thick body, almost oily in mouthfeel. The acidity is very low. Again, dewy, mossy forest floor notes are primary here, and there is just the slightest hint of monsooned coffee flavor. Java coffees are unbalanced by nature, extremely low acidity means they are all tenor-to-bass range, no bright notes. The finish has that heavy sweetness, molasses, mulling spice and tree-bark herbs. This may be exactly what you are looking for in the cup, low acid, mild flavors, or you might want to use it as a backdrop to add body to a bright and wild Ethiopia coffee; or a classic Mohka Java with a Yemeni lot.





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Ateng coffee leaves, Indonesia
Country: Java, Indonesia
Grade: 1
Region: East Java, Kajumas and Curah Tatal
Processing: Wet-hulled (Giling Basah)
Arrival Date: February 2011 Arrival
Appearance: .4 d/300gr, 17-18 Screen
Varietal: Djember Typica, Catimor
Intensity/Prime Attribute: Mild-Medium intensity / Viscous body, rustic flavors
Roast: Full City to Full City+ to Vienna. Roast it to develop the maximum chocolate bitterness without making it ashy or carbony. FC+ is best, I feel.
Compare to: Very Sumatra-like in character, with all the body and deep-toned cup flavors. Javas don't score high, but they are a welcome relief from acidic coffees.
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Java Kopi Sunda

This coffee is the result of a small-yet-ambitious project, to build a small outpost in the oldest coffee growing region in Java, work with the local farmers, and wet-process the coffee in tiny batches to high standards. It's the work of several people, Eko Purnomowidi who supervised the project, with oversight from Dariusz Lewandowski and support from Edo Gurdian and Uden Banu. Two Indonesians, a Costa Rican and a Pole: all crazy enough to pursue building this small coffee camp. Java Sunda (West Java) was the original coffee area, but you would find very, very few trees here of late. All the coffee is grown in East Java, where all the big estates are. All Java sold in the US is basically East Java coffee. But farmers in Java Sunda always kept small coffee plots, and there was one commodity quality mill near Bandung that would buy coffee (but not for much). Yet here amongst the Ateng and Jember were some old Typica trees, the original Typica! (Java was the first destination for coffee from Yemen, with a stopover in India). This is just the first year of the project, and there was so little coffee we could create only 2 lots. I look forward to the future development of the Java Sunda project as we isolate the cultivars that are blended here (especially the Typica and longberry Kopi Sunda itself) to find more nuances in the cup. All these coffees were meticulously hand sorted, hiring local youths in the area. It drove up the cost of the coffee, but resulted in a better cup, and is in the spirit of this project to improve coffee and community in the area!

This coffee is distinct from other Indonesias, and from the usual West Java coffees. The aromatics are mild, with soft chocolate wafer notes in the dry fragrance, and some malted milk as well. In the Full City roast it reminds me of chocolate-dipped pretzels. The wet aroma has a strong chocolate character as well, a semi-sweet variety, with dark raisin hints. The cup has a bittersweet quality at the recommended roast levels (FC to FC+) that reads as a balanced chocolate roast tone. It's not as bass-note in character as other Indonesian offerings, but I wouldn't dare call it acidic either. It has moderate brightness that only contributes more to it's balance, and fruit essence lurks in the background, emerging more as the cup cools (plum and raisin come to mind). In some ways it has something we called "Island Flavor Profile," a soft and mild character overall, and being that Java is one big Island it makes sense.



This coffee is part of our direct trade Farm Gate pricing transparency program.

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The crew of the Java Sunda Project, plus a couple outlanders.
Country: Java, Indonesia
Grade: 1
Region: Ciparay-Lagok Salki, Java Sunda
Processing: Wet Process
Arrival Date: November 2010 Arrival, Grain Pro
Appearance: 1.2 d/300gr, 16-17 Screen
Varietal: Ateng, Jember, Typica, Kopi Sunda
Intensity/Prime Attribute: Mild-Medium intensity / Balance of brightness, body and flavor
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Java Kajumas Organic Wet-Hulled

This coffee hails from the Kajumas area in East Java, and is the first certified Organic Java coffee we have seen, or offered. We received the samples alongside the standard "Government Estate" lots, and it was far better than those old standards. Private Estate Java farms are supposed to be inferior to the 4 Government Estate plantations. They are supposedly lower-grown, not processed or prepared as well, for those who want to save a few pennies. But this is the 3rd time I have picked a Private over the PTP (Government) estates. Unlike the Govt estates which offer wet-process coffees, this is a wet-hulled coffee (note the difference in terms), the same process used in much of Sumatra and Sulawesi. You can see by the appearance of the green bean this is a wet-hulled lot, and you can see the dark opal green color, so similar to Sumatra wet-hulled coffees. Wet-hull processing means the coffee is picked, the skin pulped, and then the seed is partly dried. When it still has 25-30% moisture it is hulled out of the parchment, and laid out in the sun for final drying. Much of that low-toned Indonesia flavor (as in Sumatra coffees) is due to this unique process. The dry fragance has a sweet woody quality, a foresty wet earth note, and a bit of syrup to it. It is definitely Indonesian in character. On my first round I was cupping this alongside some really clean wet-processed coffees, and thought it was a little musty. But when I cupped it with other Indonesians it had a definite humus aspect, but sweet too. Yes, context matters in cupping, and some coffees are difficult to consider alongside others. Anyway, it still definitely has strong Indonesian character, with natural herb and spice indications in the wet aroma. There's a bit of sweet sorghum, light corn syrup, and smoke. The cup has huge body and earthy chocolate flavors. The cup has a touch of butterscotch sweetness, sweet tobacco, and a slight smokey finish. It's all about body here. This has a thick body, almost oily in mouthfeel. Java coffees are unbalanced by nature, extremely low acidity means they are all tenor-to-bass range, no bright notes. This may be exactly what you are looking for in the cup, low acid, mild flavors, or you might want to use it as a backdrop to add body to a bright and wild dry-process Ethiopia coffee, or a classic Mohka Java with a Yemeni lot. And it makes a very interesting if not rather funky espresso.





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Ateng coffee leaves, from my trip to Indonesia
Country: Java, Indonesia
Grade: 1
Region: East Java, Kajumas and Curah Tatal
Processing: Wet Hulled
Arrival Date: January 2010 Arrival
Appearance: .4 d/300gr, 17-18 Screen
Varietal: Djember Typica, Catimor
Intensity/Prime Attribute: Mild-Medium intensity / Viscous body, mild flavors, rustic hints
Roast: Full City to Full City+ to Vienna. Roast it to develop the maximum chocolate bitterness without making it ashy or carbony. FC+ is best, I feel.
Compare to: A cleaner cup profile than many Sumatras, but with all the body and deep-toned cup flavors. Javas don't score high, but they are a welcome relief from acidic coffees.
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Java Kajumas Organic Taman Dadar

This coffee hails from the Kajumas area in East Java, and is the first certified Organic Java coffee we have seen, or offered. We received the samples alongside the standard "Government Estate" lots, and it was far better than those old standards. Private Estate Java farms are supposed to be inferior to the 4 Government Estate plantations. They are supposedly lower-grown, not processed or prepared as well, for those who want to save a few pennies. But this is the 3rd time I have picked a Private over the PTP (Government) estates. Like the Govt estates, this is a wet-processed (aka washed) coffee, so it is different than Sumatras and Sulawesi lots that are wet-hulled. I wasn't too impressed with the green coffee appearance here. It is well sorted, but it appears polished. You will notice the chaff-less, shiny surface. Polishing can make green coffee look nice, but it can be destructive to the cup quality because the friction it generates creates heat which is not good for the unroasted coffee.

The dry fragance has a sweet woody quality, and a bit of maple syrup to it. It's clean (especially compared to the funky notes of a Sumatra) but it is still definitely Indonesian in character, with natural herb and spice indications in the wet aroma. There's a bit of sweet sorghum, light corn syrup, and smoke. There's a winey note on the break. The cup has a touch of sweetness (actually a bit like marshmallow). Overall flavors are very soft and mild; it's all about body here. This has a thick body, almost oily in mouthfeel. There's a not-unpleasant dry grass aspect that seems like a hint, just the slightest hint, of monsooned coffee flavor. Java coffees are unbalanced by nature, extremely low acidity means they are all tenor-to-bass range, no bright notes. This may be exactly what you are looking for in the cup, low acid, mild flavors, or you might want to use it as a backdrop to add body to a bright and wild Ethiopia coffee; or a classic Mohka Java with a Yemeni lot.





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Ateng coffee leaves, Indonesia
Country: Java, Indonesia
Grade: 1
Region: East Java, Kajumas and Curah Tatal
Processing: Wet Process
Arrival Date: February 2008 Arrival
Appearance: .4 d/300gr, 17-18 Screen
Varietal: Djember Typica, Catimor
Intensity/Prime Attribute: Mild-Medium intensity / Viscous body, mild flavors, rustic hints
Roast: Full City to Full City+ to Vienna. Roast it to develop the maximum chocolate bitterness without making it ashy or carbony. FC+ is best, I feel.
Compare to: A cleaner cup profile than many Sumatras, but with all the body and deep-toned cup flavors. Javas don't score high, but they are a welcome relief from acidic coffees.
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Java Kajumas Curah Tatal

Private Estate Java farms are supposed to be inferior to the 4 Government Estate plantations. They are supposedly lower-grown, not processed or prepared as well, for those who want to save a few pennies. But this is the second time I have picked a Private over the PTP (Government) estates. I was impressed with the beautiful appearance of the green (I know, "eye-cupping" is not encouraged) and later by the cup. It's a traditional Indonesia-process coffee, also called wet-hulled process ... somewhere between a wet-process and a pulp natural. The difference is that they pulp the skin off the fruit and partially dry the coffee, then they remove the seed from the parchment shell before the seed has fully dried. It results in the darker color and chaff-free, smooth appearance, and of course it influences the cup greatly. The dry fragrance has a remarkable sweetness to it, darkly toned and chocolaty. Sweetness is not something found abundantly in Java coffees. They are usually all about bitter, brooding, intense bass-note flavors ... not sweetness. This lot seems to have the best of both worlds though. The wet aromatics are baker's chocolate, clove, with a tobacco and herbal hint. There is an absence of brightness in the cup; it drops off the map of acidity (7 is the lowest positive/non-defective score I can bear to give), straight into the dark pool of body, earth and chocolate-like alkaloid bittersweetness. And by bitter I mean good coffee bitters, not dirty nasty bitterness from Grandpa's Bunnomatic that he never cleaned once in 20 years. As it cools, there are maple syrup and butterscotch sweet tones that are fleshed out. The body is very oily in texture and the tobaccoy and spice notes emerges in the aftertaste. There's a fruit flavor lurking in the background of this cup too, hard to identify but it has both papaya and melon-like (honeydew) aspects. Anyway, it's quite a lot more interesting than recent PTP Government Estate coffees, which have been increasingly clean in the process and cup flavors, which only results in a more distinct impression of the once-hidden cultivar flavor; that odd Catimor nutty taste. While I can't say this lot does not have Catimor cultivar, I hazard a guess that there is a lot of old Djember Typica in here too, based on the cup and bean form. If I had to pick a color to represent this cup flavor, it would be mahogany brown.





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Ateng coffee leaves, Indonesia
Country: Java, Indonesia
Grade: 1
Region: East Java, Kajumas and Curah Tatal
Processing: Semi-washed Indonesia Processed
Arrival Date: October 2008 Arrival
Appearance: .4 d/300gr, 17-18 Screen
Varietal: Djember Typica, Catimor
Intensity/Prime Attribute: Bold intensity / Viscous body, butterscotch sweetness, chocolate bittersweetness
Roast: Full City to Full City+ to Vienna. Roast it to develop the maximum chocolate bitterness without making it ashy or carbony. FC+ is best, I feel. But you get nice sweetness from the FC roast, so I find little reason to go darker than that.
Compare to: A cleaner cup profile than many Sumatras, but with all the body and dark-toned cup flavors. Espresso note: a relatively light FC roast yields a fantastic S.O. epsresso! Try it!
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