Tasting Notes: Milk Chocolate, Cherry, Hazelnut
Process: Pulped Natural
Variety: 100% Red Cataui
Elevation: 1100 MASL
Serra do Cabral is the second Brazil I have in at the moment but I feel it's a brilliant contrast to Rio Brilhante. This pulped natural (a first for Hometown) brings the perfect balance of body and sweetness while also maintaining a crisp, clean cup.
Pulped natural is essentially the middle ground between washed and naturally processed coffees. With the pulped natural process, only the peel is taken away and a large amount of mesocarp (musilage) is left on the bean while it goes in to the drying stage.
The Flanzer family began farming in the Serra do Cabral (in the Chapada de Minas at the north of Minas Gerais) in the 1970s, when Henrique Flanzer – father of Marcelo & Roberto – bought land to engage in forestry projects. For many years, Ecoagricola was almost purely run for forestry. However, in 2000, Marcelo and Roberto (who had taken over management of the farm) began planning for the next 30 years, at which point they decided to diversify. They chose coffee for the great fit with the region: altitude, climate, water & terroir were perfect for coffee production. They planted their first coffee nursery in 2006 and their very first coffee harvest was in 2009. Even today, one of the most interesting facts about Ecoagricola is that there is no other company producing coffee in the Serra do Cabral. The brothers, like their father, are true pioneers.
In many ways, sustainability and ethics are intrinsic to Ecoagricola’s origins. Many decades before sustainable production came into “fashion”, the family had already preserved vast areas within their land. Hundreds of hectares remain almost untouched. In fact, these concepts of preservation are built into the company’s very name: "Eco" refers to "ecological" and “Agrícola" means "agriculture". According to Marcelo and Roberto, the very purpose of their agricultural business is to generate funding for ecological preservation. They’ve been incredibly successful and have, as of 2017, been re-certified by Rainforest Alliance with a grade of 97.7 out of 100.
1- 2017 Cup of Excellence Winner – Naturals
2- 2017 Cup of Excellence Winner – Pulped Naturals
3- 2017 Rainforest Alliance / Imaflora Award 1st place
4- 2017 BSCA Aroma – Naturals 6th place
5- 2017 Minas Gerais Quality Contest 1st place Naturals, for Chapadas de Minas
6- 2017 Minas Gerais Quality Contest 1st place Pulped Naturals, for Chapadas de Minas
7- illycaffè’s Sustainable Supplier of the Year 2014/2015
8- 2015-2017 Ernesto Illy Prize for Espresso finalist for three consecutive years
9- 2017-2018 Coffee of the Year finalist
10- 2018 High Achievement on Sustainability award by Rainforest Alliance
These many prizes are a testament to the fact that Ecoagricola, virtually single handedly, “created” with success a respectable, new specialty coffee origin in Brazil, the Serra do Cabral.
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