Rodriguez Family producing the next Round of Select Series
We’re very excited to bring you this special coffee from the Rodriguez Family in Bolivia! This is the second year we have bought a Batian lot from Pedro Rodriguez of Agricafe, an organisation representing over 200 smallholder producers as part of the Sol de la Mañana program, and itself owning 12 farms and 130 hectares under the banner of Finca Los Rodriguez. As the Rodriguez family operations have expanded over the years, they have consulted specialty coffee agronomists to improve their growing practices, and established relationships to support and share knowledge with other local producers, creating a happy and healthy community that grows amazing coffee!
Samaipata is a relatively new region for growing coffee in Bolivia, as it has been historically used for growing fruits and vegetables. Pedro recognised its potential as coffee growing land, and established El Fuerte in 2012 to great success, with three more farms and a wet mill later established. Today, El Fuerte grows a range of reputable coffee varietals including Gesha, Pacamara, Batian, and Bourbon. Originally developed in Kenya in 2010, the Batian varietal has become popular to grow in Latin America. Along with exceptional cup quality, Batian is resistant to leaf rust and disease, and also produces fruit a year earlier than typical coffee varietals.
Local pickers are hired from Samaipata to perform the coffee cherry harvest at El Fuerte. This particular lot of Batian was picked at its ripest stage over many passes, and was floated and disinfected after delivery to the wet mill. The cherries were then placed into stainless steel tanks with control over temperature and pH, and fermented for 60 hours in conditions encouraging lactic acid production. After careful washing, the intact cherries were then laid out on raised African beds to dry over two and a half weeks, and then transported to Agricafe’s dry mill for hulling and a final sort under UV and natural light.
Last year’s Batian was a hard act to follow, and excitingly, this year delivers! Processes that encourage lactic acid production can produce coffees with a creamy and silky mouthfeel in the cup, and this Batian has a stunning texture reminiscent of créme brûlée. A candy-like cherry brightness coupled with a juicy lime acidity rounds out this coffee to be truly delightful. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do!