Blueprint Coffee has now purchased coffee from ASDECAFE, a group of sustainable coffee associations, for many years. Last year, we started to move toward making more connections with the associations and the region of Huehuetenango through our partnership with Los Volcanes Inc. (formerly TG-Lab). While making these connections, the region and cooperative have gone through major transitions, both politically and organizationally. One of the resulting changes was the establishment of ASODESI, or the Association for Fundamental Development for San Pedro Necta. ASODESI is an offshoot association that helps consolidate the purchase of agricultural materials, provides medical assistance to its associates, and educates members in regards to farming, environmental conditions, and the coffee market.
The farmers of ASODESI are distinct in that they are comprised of small to medium sized farmers. One aspect of their union is to establish a niche in the specialty market by dedicating themselves to environmentally sustainable practices. This area has a pattern of weather extremes starting with intense rain right after a long period of drought. This causes a delay in the maturing process of the coffee plants. This also causes issues with erosion. The farmers have come to accept the need to establish mulching programs timed with the extreme weather in order to prevent the loss of their soil.
Blueprint Coffee is directly contributing towards the efforts and stated goal of these farmers. In September of 2017, Los Volcanes and Blueprint Coffee hosted a day-long seminar to help improve their composting practices. These farmers are actively implementing organic methods, so Blueprint Coffee supported their efforts through a day of demonstrations, and a session where farmers shared ideas and current practices.
Team taste notes: caramel, brown sugar, graham, orange, cranberry, apple
We are completing our second harvest, but our third year of working with Finca Esperanza. Ana Vizcaino, the heart and soul of the farm, is constantly working with her staff to ensure everything is managed properly. She is also closely involved with the training and development of her staff. Ana has taken a highly poisoned soil – from years of pesticide, herbicide and fertilizer use – and transformed Finca Esperanza into not only an organic farm, but a farm that is restorative to the environment.
Our collaborative projects have included compost work, coffee processing assistance, and a sustainably designed drying house. The compost project is intended to address CLR (coffee leaf rust) and soil nutrition by restoring soil microbiology. We started this work at a time when the research on the subject was still in its infancy. The research is quickly becoming mainstream and also absolutely necessary in the efforts to slow global warming. The processing collaboration using yeast assisted in understanding the principles of fermentation before the farm built their own beneficio to ferment and process their own coffee. Now, we are partnering to address the difficulty of drying in a humid climate.
Preparing naturals can be a controversial subject, but it is an important learning tool for specialty coffee growers. Naturals take longer to dry and require more labor, which can be very difficult to manage during a hectic harvest season within a humid climate. So why do it? Well, that is a complicated question. Naturals are one offering in a specialty coffee farmer’s “line-up.” A coffee farm is a business that must innovate and learn in order to improve and begin to break into a market. Access to market is the final and most important step for any coffee farmer. There is very little incentive to work towards a specialty quality unless there is confidence that the coffee will reach a market that values the additional work and taste quality. Blueprint Coffee is guaranteeing the access to market by committing to purchase of the coffee and assisting Finca Esperanza in successfully expanding their product offering.
Aside from adding diversity to a farmer’s “line-up,” natural process coffees do not require the water used in the washed process and they do not leave the farmer with the spent pulp to pollute the watershed of their area. The subject of pulp processing has become an important aspect of our work with farmers in general. You will be hearing more in 2019 about how we are trying to engage with coffee pulp rotting during harvest that contributes to the degradation of soils and the watershed. For now, please enjoy the result of the hard work and dedication from the people at Finca Esperanza.
Team taste notes: blackberry, dense, chardonnay, fudge, custard, cherry
We are craftspeople dedicated to exhibiting the qualities of one of the most flavorful beverages in the world. What we attempt to create and construct are flavor experiences that are balanced, intoxicating, and special. While our single origin offerings exhibit qualities that are delicious and complete by themselves, blending can create something unique that none of our coffees offer by themselves. We are inspired by French wine and cocktails like the Sazerac. By adding a small amount of five quality ingredients (sugar, bitters, lemon, absinthe, ice), a serving of perfectly good whiskey becomes a different, yet delicious, taste experience than that offered by any neat pour.
We are excited to offer Tektōn as a compliment to our single origin offerings. It matches the integrity of those offerings by remaining a seasonal coffee with a transparent supply chain. We embrace the future insight and taste experiences Tektōn will provide.
Coffees from Papua New Guinea have been among the most complex and interesting we’ve sourced since opening in 2013. While timing this year hasn’t led to featuring a Papua New Guinea coffee for a single origin spot (at least not yet), we were excited to taste some coffees that would work for Tektōn. Forty percent of this version of Tektōn is grown by small-holders of the Tsekaka people near Banz, Jiwaka in Papua New Guinea. Its citrusy, earthy, and savory qualities add a nice dynamic to the blend. The remaining 60% of the blend is made up of our San Pedro Necta lot from Huehuetenango, Guatemala. Its pie-crust and brown sugar qualities provide a solid platform and roundness to the cup.
Team taste notes: brown sugar, brown spice, black tea, malt, cherry, berries
Blueprint Coffee is proudly powered by WordPress