December 14, 2023 3 min read
Coffea canephora (robusta) and Coffea arabica constitute the pair of majority main group.
The contrast in taste calls to awareness to the significance of the ancestry to cup quality.
Harvesting of coffee is performed by picking, stripping or mechanical means.
Quality is continually good when coffee farmers hand-pick the harvest, which is very important for specialty coffee
Habitat, body and acidity are important attributes for excellence.
Elevation can escalate acidity and body and acidity may be influenced by hill subjection.
The availability of nutrients, soil type, climate, water, light and temperature play a role in producing ripe cherries with the best cup quality.
Growing conditions, ways of life, harvesting and processing shape a better appreciation of the connection of coffee and flavor.
A moisture content of 8-12% stabilizes coffee and reduces likeliness of insects and degradation.
Lower moisture content has an impact on a grassy influence whilst higher moisture contributes to peaty and sweaty notes.
Fragrance, aroma, balance, body, flavor, acidity, sweetness, clean cup and uniformity are the foundation of evaluating coffee quality.
At Earthen we use cupping and tasting to assess the coffee by means of stringent cupping charts. Coffee is rated by scoring and this manner of tasting removes emotional values and installs a method of limiting as many variations as possible. The information is recorded and is paramount in steering us in purchasing the highest quality of coffee as well as the direction of our roasting process.
Processing defines a representation in cup nature:
Washed process/wet fermentation
This is the most common processing manner.
Where there is sufficient access to water coffee growers remove the outer fruit layer from the cherries by means of a pulping machine, soak in water and gently agitate the cherries during this stage.
The beans are then allowed to ferment for a short time namely a day or three. After the fermentation period the beans are rinsed, washed and allowed to dry on raised beds or in the sun. Washed coffees generally have higher acidity and more consistency.
Clean and bright with fruity undertones.
Acidity (comparable of lemons and limes) and uniform in the cup coupled to sweetness.
Dry processing/natural processing
Coffee beans are left in the cherry to sit without water and dry completely, including the seed, before any layers are removed. This traditional and more sustainable method of processing has a lot to do with where water is scarce. The process requires climates that are drier as it takes a long time for the coffee cherries to dry.
In this process the bean has more of a relationship with the sun encircling the cherry and will hold more of the cherry’s savor.
Smooth, sweet, with a lower acidity.
Medium to fuller heavy bodied.
Fruit and spice notes that excel through.
Pulped natural/honey processing
The fruit is removed, and the mucilage is retained on the seed during the drying process on large tables for days to weeks.
This is a combination of dry and wet processing.
Wet fermentation tastes different to natural processed coffee
These coffees tend to have low acidity and lighter to medium body and a luscious finish.
Sweetness is accentuated due to the pulp remaining intact on the coffee cherry during this process.
Giling Basah mainly used in Indonesia is a process of where the beans go through a combination between wet and dry processing.
This is the method used where the humidity is high making it difficult to dry the beans before hulling them.
The cherry is processed after handpicking by wet hulling (Giling Basah).
The cherry is then pulped by hand or pulpers driven by a machine. The coffee is fermented for a short time and washed with clean water. In the sun the parchment is dried for a brief period dependent on weather conditions. (this allows for making it easier to remove the skin)
The moisture level is 30 -40 % at this stage.
The hull is then removed by means of a wet hulling machine or a traditional dry huller.
After hulling the seeds are dried on tarpaulin or patios to a moisture content of 12-13%
These coffees generally have heavy body and low acidity.
Happy brewing and thank you all in sharing in the love of coffee with us.
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