Today’s coffee comes from the world-renowned Daterra Estate in Brazil. No, unfortunately Daterra Estate is no small family operation, a narrative we like to hear as the source of our coffee. But many importers will tell you that if they have to buy from a bigger farm, Daterra will always be the exception.
Here you have a fairly well-off owner who is clearly passionate and involved in every aspect of the coffee production, despite the fact that this is not his main business. This man is Luis Norberto Pascoal, and he sets the stage for the mission at Daterra: a no-holds-barred approach to achieving maximum cup quality. Luis Pascoal’s continuing scientific research has established Daterra as one of Brazil most innovative and respected farms. Every bag of coffee can be tracked back to the specific lot.
The Sweet Collection is a pulped-natural coffee. The cherry-pulp is removed in a machine, pulpier, and the parchment beans covered by the mucilage are then dried. This develops more body and sweetness than washed coffee with the advantage of having an extra sorting method in the pulpier.
The Sweet Collection is also more or less a cultivar cocktail, with several different cultivars being blended together: Typica, Bourbon, Caturra, Mundo Novo, Red Icatu, and Yellow Icatu.
Daterra has developed the state-of-the-art “Penta System”, in order to produce high quality green coffee beans. The Penta® System is a comprehensive approach to control each detail of the coffee quality process. The system, which was developed by Maxxipel, was based on the 6Sigma and Total Quality Program. The software also allows for total traceability. The rigid inspections of the beans yield superb coffees. Penta-sorted ripe and raisin cherries produce a smooth cup of coffee with pleasant acidity and other very special attributes.
The quality delivered is the most important output of the system. Every stage of this unique processing system has been designed to only select the coffee beans that match the high quality window of Daterra. From picking to shipping, only the perfect beans remain in the process.
The Harvesting Methodology uses selective picking. The Penta Log allows the ripe cherries to arrive at the Coffee Quality Preparation Unit in less than two hours. At the Preparation Mill, the cherries are sorted by size, maturity stage, and density. Each cherry batch is identified and tracked throughout the whole process.
Sun Drying is fundamental for the initial reduction in humidity. Thin layers of cherries, spread over heat-insulated concrete patios, are revolved three times an hour by means of special equipment. Drum Drying is essential to finally achieve the perfect moisture level for high quality roasting. The drying curve is monitored through a software that guarantees a stable and smooth drying process.
The Wood Silos, much like big wine barrels, age and soften the green beans for six weeks. This resting stage is mandatory for moisture homogeneity.
The Penta Warehouse preserves coffee beans from heat, infrared waves, ultra-violet rays and air flow, so the roaster will always receive fresh coffee as a result. Certified Organic Jute Bags are used for packing green coffee. In addition Daterra developed, a special Penta Packing, which grants the produce a much longer shelf life than other greens. Roasters can count on freshness, flavor, and aroma.
The green coffee from Daterra is not packed in traditional jute sacks, but in vacuumed and nitrogen-flushed aluminium foil bags which prolongs the life of the green coffee significantly. This has proved to keep—and in some cases improve—quality for over three years of storage.
Welcome to my Table, here in the corner of this cafe. Today we’re sipping a cup of the Brazil Daterra Sweet Collection, from Buzz Killer Espresso in Chicago, Illinois. Feel free to pull up a chair.
region: Cerrado, Minas Gerais, Brazil
farm: Daterra Estate
producer: Luis Norberto Pascoal
elevation: 1150 meters above sea level
cultivars: Typica, Bourbon, Caturra, Mundo Novo, Red Icatu, Yellow Icatu
process: pulped natural, patio dried
certifications: UTZ, Rainforest Alliance, IQNet
The aroma coming off of the Brazil Daterra is incredible. It embodies everything the traditional Brazilian coffee has going for it, but so much more. Hazelnut, fudge, brown sugar, citrus, and plenty of floral aromatics make this a sweet and fragrant affair.
Ohhhh mannnn…. I’ve only taken my first few sips of this coffee but I can already tell that it’s going to be a real treat. Really incredible flavors of caramel, toffee and tamarind, while plenty of citrus (mildly zesty orange peel) and cane sugar sprinkle over the sides of the tongue. And the finish? Holy cow—it’s like a fistful of trail mix. So many types of nuts appear here (and throughout the cup, really): hazelnut (in particular), shave almond, and pistachio.
As it cools, the coffee almost completely transforms; it’s like two different coffees poured into one cup and separated by a thin screen. A fruitstand’s worth of beautifully silky, juicy fruits wash over the palate: pomegranate, cherry, red delicious apple, Bartlett pear, and a mild candied lemon tartness all ride in on the crest of a wave of violet petals, cherry blossoms, brown sugar, and cinnamon spiciness before being washed away by a juicy clementine acidity.
Full body; silky mouthfeel; citrus acidity; clean finish.
the bottom line:
The Brazil Daterra Sweet Collection, from Buzz Killer Espresso, is a coffee that really live up to its name. This is a really sweet cup of coffee in many categories: it’s fruity, it’s savory, it’s confectious, it’s floral, and it’s nutty. It’s not overwhelmingly sweet, though; it has enough high notes and low notes to achieve a tremendous balance throughout.
This coffee really took me by surprise. Even being provided the hint in the coffee’s name, I wasn’t expecting it to be so sweet. I figured it would be tasty and that I’d probably taste a traditional Brazilian profile, but maybe an enhanced version: chocolate, nuts, citrus… You know—the usual suspects. Instead, I got all of that, and then some.
There wasn’t much of this coffee to begin with and I’m told it’s selling out fast, so hurry over to Buzz Killer Espresso or order online as soon as you can to give the Brazil Daterra a try.
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Andrew is a husband, father, dog lover, craft beverage enthusiast, content creator, and niche market Internet celebrity. Formerly of A Table in the Corner of the Cafe and The Pulitzer Project and contributor to Barista Magazine and Mental Floss, he’s been writing on the Internet for years.