Costa Rica, Red Honey
Costa Rica, Red Honey
CoopeDota, the world’s first certified carbon-neutral coffee exporter, is much more than just a coffee operation with a great certification. Recently retired Director Roberto Mata built up an amazing industry integrating social services and environmental protections while producing some of the highest quality coffee available in Costa Rica.
CoopeDota provides members with access to wet and dry milling services, yet the outreach extends far beyond processing: coffee by-products are used to fuel the mechanical drying guardiolas and water use during processing is reduced by using eco-pulpers. The cooperative manages trash pickup in the city of Santa Maria de Dota, and has been able to repurpose waste into renewable forms of energy. CoopeDota’s farms stretch deep into the Tarrazu region and while they produce a significant volume, they also are deeply invested in highlighting exceptional microlots.
This regional blend has undergone “Honey” processing, a hybrid processing method that strips the skin and fruit away but leaves the sticky mucilage surrounding the coffee in tact. After pulping, unlike with washed coffees, the mucilage-covered parchment is sent straight to the drying tables, skipping the fermentation tank and channel grading steps. This particular lot is a “red” honey, meaning a fair amount of fruit was left on the seed – not as much as if it were a “black” honey, but more than a “yellow” or “white” iteration.
Honey processing is the rose, any other name by which would smell as sweet… frequently referred to elsewhere in the world as semi-washed or pulped natural. So far as I can determine, it is Brazilian processing equipment manufacturer Pinhalense who stake the claim to creating the world’s first cereja descascado (literally “deskinned cherry”) in 1991 as a value-add alternative to the country’s traditionally dry-processed coffee. The pulped natural was a handy way to sell the local market a bunch of new equipment while offering an environmentally friendly answer to demands for washed coffees in dry regions.
Taste Notes: Berry, Dark Chocolate, Purple Grape
Grower: Cooperativa de Caficultores de Dota R.L. (CoopeDota)
Region: Dota, San José, Costa Rica
Altitude: 1550-1950 meters
Process: Eco-pulped, Red Honey