- Monday March 27th, 2017
- Posted by: Andean Pacific Coffee
- Category: Sin categoría
For you to have a better understanding of what we speak of when we talk of coffee processing, from our perception the main points in the chain, as a macro-summary, are:
Types of soil, planting-plantation and cultural management: Selection of variety, height, soil quality, fertilization, improvement of the soil are some of the main points on this link of the chain.
All of these factors will be configured to create conditions that will cause the plant to absorb mineral salts, water, elements and chemical compounds that will go up to the laboratory (which is the leaf) where all this mineral soup will be transformed into processed sap. Much of this sap will go to the grain in order to feed the baby that is forming (seed) which will store genetic info delivered by the entire sum of factors to preserve its species. Clearly the variety, the height and the cultural management will have a great impact in the outcome.
Harvesting and Post-Harvesting: Selective harvesting, fermentiation, drying and storage.
This is the point that could save the situation. Coffee cannot be improved, it can only be maintained or worsened and this is determined by the moment and the way the fruit is harvest. There is where the story begins. Most of the coffee from Peru are processed by “washing”. In simple terms it means each coffee cherry (which is like a cherry, with a pulp and 2 juxtaposed grains) is separated from its pulp and seeds (which is what we drink) to go into a well where they will ferment for a certain amount of hours, later the seed will be washed to remove the remains of pulp and microorganisms from the fermentation process and proceed to the drying phase. After that, the seeds will be stored in a innocuous place, whit no risks of cross-contamination.
Cofee toasting, tasting and preparation: This is the final part, but not the least important. It is at this point that a grain, through the interaction with different variables (Temperature, air flow, drum rpm and lots of other factors related to each other) is transformed into what we know as coffee, all of the factors will affect the final result. Toasting is true art.
Tasting is when the specialists break down the organoleptic attributes of each coffee, given by the sum of the items listed before. They evaluate smell, fragrance, taste, sweetness, body, acidity, balance and many other points we’ll talk about later. This is where the skill of each taster and its sensivility comes to light. A bad taster can rule out a great coffee that is actually wonderful. Its a very delicate job, with a great responsibility.
At the end of the chain are the baristas. A sort of coffee-chef, specialists trained and prepared to extract the best of each coffee seed, from each source to transform it into a beverage. Its role is also fundamental since it helps us give consumer awareness. Today many of them dedicate themselves to making drawins on milk, but there are several very interested in publicizing the benefits of each coffee and its origin.