Your Coffee Subscription – April 2022

Dear coffee subscriber,

April has arrived and your subscription coffee has just left our roastery.

This month, we have some exciting coffees, one of which has just arrived from Finca Tamana – a farm owned by my dear friend Elias Roa – following a late harvest last year and is one of the best coffees I have tasted from the farm.

The second choice this month is a washed coffee from Fahem, Ethiopia, delivering a delicate flavour profile, quite different to the typical Ethiopian Sidamo / Yirgacheffe coffees. The third coffee this month is a washed Bourbon & Caturra from Sibactel & Cafeólogo in Mexico.

You can join me in tasting this month’s selection on YouTube here and learn more about each coffee below.

Finca Tamana Bourbon – 1st & 4th bag

Flavour notes: Red fruits, black tea & floral
Producer: Elias Roa
Harvest: June – July 2021
Origin: El Pital, Huila, Colombia
Process: Washed
Cultivar: Pink & red Bourbon

This is the third harvest we have of the red and pink Bourbon cultivars from Finca Tamana. I managed to get some seeds from a really nice red Bourbon in 2014 that I gave to Elias. We planted these seeds together in June 2014 and the trees were planted in a small hill at Finca Tamana in August 2015.

At the same time Elias had gotten a handfull of seeds from a neighbour of some pink Bourbon.The difference is the red and pink colour of the coffee cherries when they are ripe but they also taste slightly different in the cup where the pink one is slightly more floral and the red one is slightly more fruity.

I am very happy that so far it is one of the best coffees we have tasted from Tamana. Elias has now planted more of these cultivars and we can expect even more of this delicious coffee already in 2023

Fahem – 2nd & 5th bag

Fahem 74110 - April 2022

Flavour notes: Floral, sweet citrus & peach
Producer: Mohammed Lalo
Harvest: December 2020
Origin: Atnago, Limmu Seka, Ethiopia
Process: Washed
Cultivar: 74110

The washed coffees from Fahem are quite different to the typical Ethiopian Sidamo / Yirgacheffe coffees with a slightly more delicate flavour profile.

These coffees are really delicate and pretty and a lot of times our guests will say it tastes like tea. Personally I prefer to brew them slightly weaker than normal to be able to enjoy the “tea like” flavours even more. I often dose a few grams less than I normally do with a coffee and keep the same grind setting to ensure I have a good extraction. This coffee is best drunk at a lukewarm temperature and can also work really well as an iced coffee. And remember, it is not the coffee that tastes like tea, it’s the flavoured tea that tastes like delicious Ethiopian coffee…

There are a few different cultivars planted at Fahem, but they are mainly producing the 74110 and 74148 cultivars. Normally they will pick and mix these cultivars together, but for us they are picking, processing and drying these coffees separately as we like to taste the different nuances in each cultivar.

The 74110 cultivar was selected from an original “mother tree” in the Bishari village of the Metu Province in the Illuababora zone. After research in their field laboratory (coffee farm) in Jimma, the JARC researchers found the cultivar to be resistant to coffee berry disease and to have a high yield potential. JARC released the cultivar in 1979 as a new and improved cultivar and since then it has become one of the most popular cultivars in Ethiopia known for its floral and citric flavour profile.

Sibactel & Cafeólogo – 3rd & 6th bag

Sibactel & Cafeólogo - April 2022

Flavour notes: Cocoa nibs & strawberries
Producer: Beneficio Comunitario Sibactel & Cafeólogo
Harvest: April 2021
Origin: Tenejapa, Chiapas, Mexico
Process: Washed
Cultivar: Bourbon & Caturra

Cafeólogo is a company started by our friend Jesus Salazar in San Cristobal de las Casas in Chiapas, Mexico.

They have been working closely with farmers in Chiapas for several years and helped them improve the quality of their coffees by giving training and assisting with processing and drying coffees. In Sibactel, Tenejapa, they have been buying coffees from a group of Mayan farmers who are producing some exceptional coffees. After many years of good relations with the farmers in the area, Jesus was able to get a facility in Sibactel and has helped build a community mill where they are now working with 65 farmers.

This particular coffee is from this community mill and is therefore a mix of coffee from several smallholder farmers near Sibactel. All of the farms I have visited that Jesus and his team are working with are growing coffee without any use of pesticides and mineral fertilisers and are also growing other crops like maize and plantain among the coffee trees.

They all grow Bourbon and Caturra cultivars which means the coffee has a nice rich and sweet character with notes of cocoa nibs and strawberries.

I first started buying these coffees when I was looking for coffees for restaurant Noma’s pop up in Tulum, Mexico. I spent a lot of time tasting a lot of different coffees from various regions in Mexico but none could match the quality of the coffees that Jesus was delivering. That is why we selected these coffees to be served at Noma’s pop up and we have been buying small quantities of these coffees ever since.

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