La Tortuga is back for 2009.
We’ve got yet another fresh crop Central American in stock, and the consistency the Caballero’s farm in Mogola has displayed over the past few years is remarkable. Back in April 2008 I helped Geoff Watts & Sarah Kluth build the Tortuga project’s crop for Intelli, and when we received the coffee in June of that year, the cup was displaying notes of tamarind, purple grape, ripe orange, and cocoa. This year Jesse Crouse has taken my place in the Quality Control lab, and as a consequence I’ve been waiting a little longer to sample the new coffees. Now that our container has arrived in Chicago, we’ve been sample & trial roasting the beans and are surprised to find a number of the same characteristics still present in the 2009 batches. Among the flavor notes we’ve been picking up this year are mission figs, citrus zest, pineapple, cane sugar, with some floral hints and caramel-like syrupy mouthfeel.
This year’s La Tortuga marks one of the first containers of coffee Intelligentsia has had directly imported from origin to Chicago. Instead of the coffee effectively changing hands and ownership at a number of different ports across the continent, we’ve whittled down the amount of time and $$ it’s taken to get the coffee to our warehouse and start roasting. Additionally, the burlap bags have all been Grainpro sealed in Honduras. While many of our coffees come with a brown-paper lining inside the jute as an additional flavor-seal, the Grainpro bags are hermetically sealed. J, our warehouse organizer & forklift specialist has been sealing a number of our other current coffees in Grainpro bags as well, a task that has cause more than a few headaches.
We just finished our first full week of production roasts for the turtle. Here’s some shots of Josh Brown dropping the first 70k batch off of the 90k Red Gothot Friday before Memorial Day.