Around 20 coffee farmers contribute to this coffee, which grows on the slopes of the Cordillera Isabelia mountain range in Nicaragua. The combination of their efforts creates a sweet & creamy cup of coffee. Then, after cooling slightly, subtle tones of brown sugar, cocoa, and apple present themselves. This Nicaraguan coffee easily pleases a wide audience of coffee lovers with its comforting flavors. Cordillera Isabelia transitions the drinker into flavors matching the cooling weather.
At Blueprint, we source little Nicaraguan coffee. Of course, this speaks not to our views on the potential of the country. Instead, our Central American sourcing focuses more closely on relationships in Guatemala and El Salvador. However, a small gap in our relationship coffee offerings opened and this lot from Cordillera Isabelia in Nicaragua earned its spot by way of a few round of cupping.
Every coffee growing country has a long and distinct history. This history frequently has a character in the coffee. Strange, right? But, it makes sense when applied to any agricultural commodity. Weather, financial crises, and government interventions all affect the success of a coffee based economy. In 1998, a combination of a 30-year low in coffee prices and Hurricane Mitch lead to catastrophic economic conditions for Nicaraguan coffee farmers. In the following year, Nicaragua lost 50% of its export earnings to loss from the hurricane. According to research, an estimated 500-3000 farmers succumbed to foreclosure. Nicaraguan farmers lost the ability to reinvest into the following harvest. Additionally, this caused future losses in yield and quality. No government intervention existed to assist affected farmers.
During this period, Fair Trade certification was being established. It became the needed safety net for many struggling coffee farmers. In short, Fair Trade certification helped stabilize and restore Nicaragua’s coffee sector.
The impact of the coffee crisis has had long lasting effects in Nicaragua requiring well-intentioned leaders in the coffee industry to assist in their recovery. One of these actors is importer Caravela. They established their PECA program in Nicaragua to help the farmers continue to improve and sustain themselves. Two decades later, farmers still need support and good partners to make coffee farming economically sustainable.
brown sugar, creamy, cocoa, apple, caramel, nougat, mixed nuts, grapefruit
Penrose, named after the triangle, is our seasonal espresso blend. We feel the perfect espresso is an impossible goal, but we still strive to create it. Penrose is our ever-updated offering in the quest for the perfect espresso. While the seasonal components will vary throughout the year, it is always (nearly) perfect for your hopper.
Penrose seasonal espresso blend aims to:
Penrose also does well in the brewer – look for notes of lasting sweetness and heavy body, with a subdued acidity.
Sometimes our sourcing plans do align ever so perfectly. For v23, we combine our work in Guatemala with Los Volcanes and the beginning of our work in Ethiopia with Dambi Uddo AI. For three years now, we’ve purchased washed coffee from San Carlos, the neighboring farm to the wet mill operated by Los Volcanes. This coffee testifies to the consistency and quality of the Antigua region, intentional growing, and fantastic processing.
Dambi Uddo AI marks its first complete harvest with the 2018-2019 season. Active partner Ture Waji hosted us in Guji, Ethiopia in January of 2018. His focus on natural processing, the growers in Guji, and the environment were obvious. At that time, he represented his aunt and uncle’s stations at Mormora and Allona. So, when he established his own station in Guji this year, we partnered with Atlantic Specialty to bring part of his first natural crop to St. Louis. Husen Adem grows coffee near Ture’s collection station on six hectares of land. As a result of the partnership with Ture, we connected to our first single-farm Ethiopian coffee. This just goes to show that maintaining relationships and some patience can pay off.
chocolate, blueberry, earthy, heavy-bodied, brown sugar
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