Farm: Vuong Farm
Process: Anaerobic Honey
Region: Lam Dong
Orange, caramel, Jackfruit. A citric acidity livens the cup. The cup fades to caramel and milk chocolate in the finish. Excellent as a pour over and Single Origin Espresso.
A soft and sweet cup with hints of orange zest and vanilla. Macadamia and cashew in the cup with a touch of cocoa in the finish. The acidity is very mild making this a great choice for espresso with or without milk added.
A 12 hectare farm at 1360-1520 masl in Lam Dong province not far from the town of Dalat. Here 33 year old Hiếu Vương Đình and his younger brother grow a few specialty heirloom varieties beyond the common Catimor derived strains planted in the region such as Longberry, Red Bourbon, and Orange bourbon. They have two mills. On their Parents 4 hectare plot they process naturals. and on the brothers newer 8 hectare field they process washed and Honey coffees. Both are dried in covered drying buildings on raised screens. For the Bourbon they process it as an Anaerobic honey. Pulping the cherries first and then fermenting them for 72 hours in sealed bags before putting them out to dry.
About Orange Bourbon
The Bourbon variety is one of the two major cultivated varieties from which most coffee growing around the world today descends (The other being Typica)
In 1718 seeds from Yemen were brought to the French colony on Reunion Island near Madagascar, The called Bourbon Island after the French House of Bourbon which ruled France at the time. Around 1860 plants from Reunion were brought to mainland Africa and to Brazil. The coffee depended from these plants came to be known as the Bourbon variety after the name of the island at that time.
Bourbon can still be found fairly commonly in Africa, Brazil, and some countries in Central America such as Guatemala and El Salvador.
The bourbon variety usually produces red fruit, but mutations have ocurred where the fruit color is yellow. There is a cultivated variety called Yellow Bourbon which is rarer but still not too uncommon which resulted from a natural cross of Red Bourbon and a Yellow fruited Typica plant called Yellow de Botucatu in Brazil in 1930 and was released commercially to growers in the early 1950's.
And then there is Orange Bourbon, the origins of which are more murky. Any time there are red and yellow fruited trees in the same field it is possible to get some plants of an intermediary orange color or pink color.
As a cultivated variety Orange bourbon is exceedingly rare. Occasionally grown still on a handful of farms in El Salvador it is from there that the Mierisch family acquired seeds of the variety to plant on their farms in Nicaragua and Honduras.
As far as to how orange bourbon came to Vietnam, we aren't sure. Vietnam being a former French colony used to have lots of Bourbon variety coffee growing there in colonial times. Yellow bourbon exists there so it isn't surprising there is also orange bourbon. Whether Yellow bourbon came there from the Brazilian material or it was a local mutation producing yellow fruit on bourbon plants there (which would make it more of a true yellow bourbon than the Brazilian variety bearing that name which is a hybrid with typica) we don't know yet. But we are sending samples of both to RD2 in France for Genetic comparison to see if that question may be answered.
Orange bourbon has a cup profile in between red and yellow bourbon. It has the well balanced sweet cup of red bourbon, but a more delicate flavor profile of caramel and citrus that is more like yellow bourbon.
Another reason we were drawn to this farm is that we had noticed on farms in
Nicaragua (San Jose and Las Delicias) that it was easy to produce really good
quality coffee because of the altitude. So once we found out the altitude
of Cerro Azul (1600-1700masl), that piqued our interest. We also wanted to share our knowledge that we learned in Nicaragua with another origin country. Cerro Azul receives more rainfall than most of our other farms, but the silty clay soil of Cerro Azul also boosts the nutrient and water retention capabilities of the soil."