||Thailand Doi Saket Natural Typica 2018
Doi Saket is the oldest coffee growing area in Thailand, located in Chiang Mai province. Back in the late 1970s, the first Arabica trees were tested there as part of the opium replacement program instituted by the Thai King. Those trees have never been replaced by higher-yield cultivars, like in many other regions. As a result, heirloom varietals, particularly Typica, are still commonplace in many old farms. The coffee trees are 30–40 years old – older than the farmers!
Typica is now rarer because farmers replaced it with higher yielding plant stock and strands that are more rust resistant. The region grows coffee from 1,000–1,500 m.a.s.l., but we only work with smallholders whose farms sit above 1,300 m.a.s.l. and have almost all Typica plants.
We first had this coffee last year in 2017 and that first lot was intended to demonstrate to the farmers that there are people out there (*waves*) who appreciate and are willing to pay more for the heirloom cultivar to compensate for the lower yield. And now here we are in 2018 with it back after a great success last year, yay : )
This is a super small lot – just 4 bags, in fact. Thai coffee is rare in the first place, but Thai Typica is super rare. This natural is the rarest of the rare coffees!
Everything to do with this lot was done with meticulous attention to detail ...
Ripe cherries were picked in the morning from Typica trees, and the processing began right away to avoid unwanted fermentation.
Only perfectly cherries were selected by hand sorting to make sure only perfectly ripe ones made the cut.
The cherries were sampled to make sure that their Brix values were higher than 22. This in turn meant that this lot started to be put together towards the end of the harvest season.
The cherries were floated to remove any defective coffee beans.
The cherries were laid on raised beds in a single layer to minimize the cherries touching each other, which ensures even moisture and lack of unwanted fermentation.
The coffee was dried in a greenhouse in a controlled environment. The drying was carefully monitored over three weeks with the continued picking-out of any cherries that did not meet expectations. Drying continued until the moisture of the cherries reached 10%. The cherries-to-green-bean conversion ratio is typically 15% (1 to 0.15) but for this lot the conversion was 5% (1 to 0.05) because of the amount of beans that were picked out during the processing.
Pretty impressive, right?
This is a super easy drinking cup - melted chocolate and walnuts. There's a hint of black tea too, but the full body keeps the chocolate firmly front and centre.
Province: Chiang Mai
District: Doi Saket
Processing method: Natural
Altitude: 1,300–1,500 m.a.s.l.
Medium dark - through first and let it develop well before dropping at the start of second.
"Quick Look" Guide
Melted chocolate, walnut, black tea.
Note: Cupping Scores for Flavour & Overall are actually 6.5 each, not as above (software limitation, allows whole numbers only)
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