It was stevedore day at Casa Brasil on Tuesday – one of the special days when we got a container delivered directly to our Austin warehouse. The fun of breaking the seal and opening the container of coffees you hand picked at source always gives you a good feeling that almost lasts through the unloading of 25,000 lbs of coffee.
Along with Grain Pro, this is the first year that we are using the Innovation bags, a packaging designed by UFLA and Bourbon Coffees (the exporter that we generally use) that has been proven to preserve coffee quality better than other methods. The bags are 1/3 a standard bag, so 20 kilos instead of the normal 60. So good news for our quality and good news for our backs here at Casa Brasil.
Most of these lots have already gone to the sample roaster to begin looking at ideal roast curves and the coffees will be hitting the shelves and hoppers shortly. In the meantime, here are some of the highlights of the selections from this container .
* Fazenda Recanto
* Sitio Bela Vista – Jarbas Lopes (APAS)
* Zanetti Brothers Blend
* Fazenda Rainha
* Fazenda Recreio
The hills outside of Machado, Minas Gerais, are home to some incredible coffee farms and Recanto is a great example of the potential of this region. The farm has been in the family since 1896, and some of you got to meet the youngest generation of the Magalhaes Paiva family when Paula was here this past January doing an internship at Casa Brasil and learning this side of the coffee business. Recanto has become known for their creamy full-bodied sweet coffees that make great comforting cups of drip as well as a great single origin espresso.
Sitio Bela Vista – Jarbas Lopes (APAS)
This naturally-processed yellow bourbon from Jarbas Lopes is our first offering from the APAS (Associacao dos Produtores do Alto da Serra) co-op, a fair trade certified co-op outside of São Gonçalo do Sapucaí, Minas Gerais. This is one of the higher altitude regions in the Mantiqueira de Minas region, and the quality potential here is, well, high. I was able to visit APAS for the first time after the COE this past January, and I was able to find this sweet and clean natural from APAS member Jarbas Lopes. I will post some more on APAS and São Gonçalo do Sapucaí as we roll out Jarbas’s coffee later this summer.
Zanetti Brothers Blend
The Zanetti Brothers Blend has always been one of our most popular coffees with a full-bodied velvety mouth feel and strong milk chocolate flavors. This year the coffee from brothers Luis and Acacio Zanetti coffee scored higher due to its complexity and notes of stone fruit and citric orange. Hopefully Zanetti Bros fans will appreciate the seasonal variance.
One of the questions I get asked the most is “What is the best farm in Brazil.” No one really likes the true answer which is “there is no such thing as a best farm, but there are several farms that are consistently putting out incredible coffees.” So in an attempt to quantify an answer, earlier this year I applied the F1 scoring system to the Brazilian COE to determine the “best” farm in Brazil. The winner, Fazenda Recreio. 2nd place, Rainha. They used to be the same farm and got split through the generations. That’s one hell of a terroir. Rainha is managed by Ze Renato, and in the last few years he has churned out some incredible coffees. This pulped natural offering was one of their top lots this year – citric sweetness with intense caramel.
Along with this shipment we brought in a small lot (5 bags) of naturals from Recreio. Clean with hints of berries, this should give us some fun things to play around with for espresso base and iced coffee blends this summer.