Caturra, Castillo, Castillo Rosario, Colombia, Cenicafe 1
Risaralda Women's Group; Finca El Danubio
Washed; 90 Hour Extended Fermentation
The spring of 2021 brings with it the long-awaited chance to finally meet with friends and family in our own communities, but for some relationships – especially those overseas – things are still a ways off from normalcy. Not to be discouraged, Andrea Otte, our Head of Coffee at Caravan, has spent many hours over the past months chatting via Zoom with Miguel Fajardo Mendoza, the head of Raw Material in Colombia. Raw Material, a social enterprise importer and long time partners of Caravan, have continued their work with farmers all year long – albeit at a safe distance. Our latest version of Special Bru is a hat tip to our partnership with Raw Material Colombia and the producers of the Risaralda community, where both components of our latest Special Bru were grown.
The first half of our spring Special Bru comes from a small group of female producers from the communities of Santuario and El Aguila, towns located in the department of Risaralda. The women were approached by Raw Material to see if they’d be interested in selling their coffee collectively to Caravan, as part of a women’s group specifically organized between themselves, Raw Material and CCR. This is our first lot from the brand new group, and we couldn’t be happier – not only did the quality exceed our expectations, but Miguel has recently been back to visit with the women’s group and reports that they are keen to continue working together. This means even more delicious coffee in the future, and – once able – a visit to meet them in person and hash out new ideas for our budding partnership.
The second half of the blend comes from a single farm, Finca El Danubio, owned and operated by Luis Alejandro Sánchez. Mr. Sánchez is a second generation coffee farmer whose father, Jesús María Sánchez, taught him a love of farming as well as how to raise and nurture a variety of different crops, including coffee. The family talent is evident in how carefully this lot was processed, using a style called, quite simply, ‘extended fermentation’. While this nomenclature oversimplifies its complexity, in a nutshell, the process involves lengthening the time a coffee spends in the fermentation phase, in which natural enzymes and microbes assist in breaking down the sugars and proteins of the coffee’s fruity mucilage so it can be washed from the bean before drying. Longer fermentation times can be extremely risky – go too long, and your coffee is quite literally becoming alcoholic, a no-go for coffee buyers as the finished coffee tastes rancid. The careful observation, data collection, and exact timing needed to achieve success in this method is a testament to Mr. Sánchez’s abilities, and is just one great example of the skill level in the Risaralda community.
Caravan Coffee Roasters are proud members of 1% for the Planet. For more information please visit https://www.onepercentfortheplanet.org
Special Brü, our seasonal blend, is roasted for easy extraction across many brew methods – including espresso! For filter, we recommend a ration of 60g coffee to 1 litre of water, adjusted for size. For ‘spro, try 18g of coffee to 40g of liquid, at 30-32 seconds.