The ultimate coffee picks of the year with Nespresso
Coffee connoisseurs are in constant pursuit of new and exceptional coffee experiences. Nespresso coffee experts were challenged to travel the world to source their coffee ‘picks of the year’, resulting in this carefully curated selection of coffees considered as ‘gems’ due to their rarity, scarcity and extraordinary aromatic profiles.
Shirin Moayyad, Coffee Expertise Manager at Nespresso, commented: “Whilst I travel across the world tasting coffees, it is striking when one comes to my tasting table and I am so astounded by its flavour, I have to know its story instantly. This is the case for all of the coffees in the Nespresso Explorations 2018 box and I just love that these special profiles do not always come from where we most expect them to be. Remote, unusual lands or conditions can transform a normal coffee plant into a true coffee treasure. There is always something interesting or unique about these coffees and we felt that they deserved to be highlighted.”
Discover the Coffees Featured in The Nespresso Explorations Box
India Mylemoney – A complex coffee with dry cereal and toasted notes, reminiscent of bread crust.
Mylemoney Single Estate sits at a high elevation, near the Bababudan Mountain in Chikmagalur, Southern India. According to legend, India’s first coffee was planted here over 300 years ago with seeds smuggled in from Arabia by a pilgrim named Bababudan, after whom the mountain was named. All ideal factors come together on this farm: 1200 metre-high elevation (considered high for India), rich farm biodiversity, two distinct levels of shade trees, uniquely Indian coffee varieties (descended from the Kent Variety, a Typica offspring) and meticulous processing with selective picking of ripe cherries, eco-friendly pulping, fermenting, washing and drying under natural sunshine. The combination of all these factors make Mylemoney a very special cup – one that is worthy of a place in this exploration.
Nicaragua Las Marias – This Single Estate coffee gem is black honey processed. This enhances the coffee’s ultimate sweetness, revealing fruity notes with a fine acidity that lead to a comforting, balanced and round cup of coffee.
1300 metres above sea level, Finca Las Marias was the first Nicaraguan farm to be Rainforest Alliance certified back in 2003. What really makes this coffee stand out is the process used for their coffee and the care its family owners apply. It begins with incredibly meticulous coffee picking. A well-trained team of women pick ‘level 3’ ripe cherries, almost purple in colour, to guarantee extremely consistent harvesting and processing. While Nicaraguan coffee is usually processed by the washed method, this gem is ‘black honey’ processed. This means the mucilage – the sticky fruit of the coffee cherry – is left on the seed during drying. It is so called because in Spanish, mucilage is called ‘miel’ or honey. Processing this way takes an unusual amount of care, but the payoff is that it enhances the coffee’s ultimate sweetness, highlighting fruity notes and a fine acidity for a comforting, balanced and round cup of coffee.
República Dominicana Valle Del Cibao – This medium-roasted Espresso is praised for its refreshing green notes of fruits and nuts. A touch of acidity and a light body make this a great coffee to discover.
Coffee can be found all over the Caribbean, so what makes this one unique? Explorations – on site and in the cup – concluded that there really is something different about the Altura de Cibao region, where our coffee is grown. Buffeted by hurricanes in the Caribbean, the Valle Del Cibao lies between two mountain chains. In one of these chains sits the highest mountain of the entire Caribbean, the Pico Duarte, a gargantuan at 3098 metres above sea level. This giant’s mass protects the entire region from excessive climate variations, adding a stability that is translated into the cup, making it round and very balanced. Where the islands are generally exposed to the extreme weather of the Caribbean, Pico Duarte shelters this valley, serving as a weather barricade, and provides an ideal growing climate.
The result is that, unlike anywhere else, there is no real defined rainy season; it can rain at any time. This in turn means that there is constant flowering and constant fruiting. The phenomenon yields almost year-round coffee cropping and an unusually long harvesting period. In our estimation, this little hidden treasure is poised to become one of the greats of the Caribbean and Central American region.
Galapagos Santa Cruz – An Espresso with roasted and sweet cereal and biscuit notes. This coffee is round, full-bodied and demonstrates some cacao-like bitterness.
What allows coffee to grow in the unlikely environment of the Galapagos islands? Firstly, the Humboldt cold ocean current that comes from Peru is driven by cold Southern air, so although the Galapagos islands are at the equator and directly under the beating hot sun, the Humboldt cools things down. Further to this, the Cromwell current crosses from the Western Pacific, bringing rich water-borne nutrients and cold winds with it. This is a location where the north and south trade winds meet, adding to the influences of the Humboldt and the Cromwell. In short, the Galapagos Islands are a hotspot for all kinds of transformative environmental influences. This terroir peculiarity leads to an interesting metric: there is a 5:1 metre correlation between the mainland and the Galapagos. So, a farm at 250 metres above sea level in the Galapagos is equivalent to one at 1250 on the mainland, which is a perfect growing altitude for Arabica.
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