Pulp natural processing makes for a more refined Brazil cup, raw sugar and roasted nut tones in clear focus, a flavor of sweet Thai peanut sauce, layered dark cocoa, and hefty body. Best with 48 hours rest. City+ to Full City+. Good for Espresso.
This coffee comes to us from the region of Pedralva, in the Mantiqueira micro region, an area that boasts over 2000 "small holder" farmers. I'm using quotes here, as we don't usually consider farmers with 30, 40, even 50 hectares as "small holders". But this is quite small for Brazil, home to massive estates with fully mechanized harvesting operations. Many of the farmers in Pedralva still do some manual picking, allowing for better separation of ripe and underripe cherry. This particular lot is from Pedra Branca, a processing facility that was erected as part of a quality-focused initiative, providing the local farmers state of the art processing infrastructure where they can process smaller batch sizes. The facility is equipped to produce both pulp-natural and dry-processed coffees, this being the former. The farms are located around the Pedra Branca mountains, plantings in the 1300 meter range and planted mainly in Yellow Bourbon and Catuai, although this is a Yellow Bourbon separation. We found that the cup profile tastes the most settled with at least 48 hours.
We're pleased with this Pedra Branca coffee, a cup that strikes a balance between unrefined sugar sweetness and roasted nut tones typical of the region. I think City+ is a good starting point in terms of roast level, the dry fragrance offering glimpses of dark sugar and nut smells, much like sweetened peanut sauce, and subtle dry spice notes. Adding hot water draws out a smell of dried banana and raw sugar, a nutty sweetness lifted in the steam. Our Full City roast showed a fair amount of cacao/roast bittering tones too, offset by rustic sugar sweetness, and a faint green melon accent. The cup has bittersweetness you expect from Brazil, underlying cacao-like accents with countering molasses sugar sweetness. The pulp natural process definitely tones down fruit flavors, though I do taste hints of banana cooked with dark sugars (think banana bread loaf). Full City cups offer layered cocoa expressions, roasted almond and peanut flavors accentuated in the finish. This coffee cups with body and heft at City+ and Full City+ and will make a great SO espresso, or blend component.