El Burro ASD Geisha
ROAST | LIGHT
ORIGIN | EL BURRO ESTATE, BOQUETE, PANAMA
NOTES | MAGNOLIA, BERGAMOT, APRICOT, WHITE WINE
BLACK LABEL RELEASE #24
I will never forget my experience meeting Wilford Lamastus, Sr. in an Aribnb in Seoul, South Korea, at 10:00 in the morning. It was a delightful and unexpected introduction to this reknown Panamanian powerhouse of a family, but that's a story for another day...
For four generations and over a hundred years, the Lamastus family has been making its passion for coffee a bonafide family tradition. What started with a man named Robert Lamastus in 1918 has catapulted to an innumerable number of awards, prizes, and accolades under the leadership of his grandson, the aforementioned Wilford Sr., and his great-grandson, our dear friend, Wilford Jr.
Founded by Robert in 1918, Elida Estate is the flagship farm in the Lamastus fleet, and it is perhaps the most well-known today. But there are two other plantations in the Panamanian highlands which bear the Lamastus family name: Luito Estate, and the origin story of today's black label release, El Burro Estate.
El Burro is located in the southermost coffee-growing region of Panama, and part of it sits inside the Baru Volcano National Park (BVNP). This location is important for a few reasons: first, because of its protected status within BVNP, coffees being produced at El Burro come from some of the most undisturbed farmland in all of Panama. It is surrounded by native, cloudy rainforest, and the crop benefits tremendously from the fresh volcanic soil supplied by Volcano Baru. Additionally, the high altitude of the farm amidst this lush backdrop lends itself to particularly advantageous coffee-growing conditions: the climate is very dry during the dry season and very wet during the wet season, causing extended ripening times for El Burro's most beloved lots: geisha.*
Processing: The unique terroir in which this coffee grows is heavily responsible for its equally unique - and utterly distinguished - flavor profile. However, it is the slow, steady, and careful way this lot was processed that elevates it above others at our cupping table. In this specific method of anaerobic processing (called Anaerobic Slow Dry, or ASD), the coffee is anaerobically fermented at elevation for 168 hours before being sun-dried on raised beds. This style of fermentation requires a very careful and discerning hand, and the Lamastus family has executed it beautifully.
In the cup: That aforementioned terroir, combined with the Lamastus family's unique style of anaerobic processing, has resulted in an anaerobic coffee that is decidedly not wild, funky, or boozy. Instead, it highlights the delicate, clean, and kept qualities of all the geisha coffees we've known and loved. In the cup, you'll experience white flowers, like magnolia; floral citrus, like bergamot; and fleshy stone fruit, like apricots. This lovely coffee reminds us of sipping a white wine from the South of France - and with it, we say, Cheers! to Wilford and his family, and we applaud their efforts in excellence throughout Panama specifically, and the specialty coffee community as a whole.
(*Black & White historically uses the g-e-s-h-a spelling of the variety; however, Wilford and his family use the g-e-i-s-h-a spelling for their coffees, so we are reflecting their preference in this release.)
Producer | Lamastus Family Estates
Farm | El Burro Estate
Process | ASD (Anaerobic Slow Dry)
Variety | Geisha
Elevation | 1600-1750 masl
Harvest | March 2022