Bolivia La Linda Coffee Flowers
When brewed they produce a very sweet brew, so sweet you'd think someone had sweetened it! There's lychee, a lovely floral edge (think honeysuckle) and sweet nutmeg spice on the finish.
Some of you may have tried Cascara and thought, Wow, that’s it, I’ve tried all of the plant! But no, no, no, there’s more!
An idea that first popped into my head back in 2010 that first came to fruition last year is back! Last year I know coffee flowers made a lot of you very happy and so I'm super excited to have more of them to share.
Dale Harris, my Director of Wholesale here at Hasbean (and 2017 World Barista Champion!), likes to compete in barista competitions (didn't he do well), and these competitions require you to come up with signature drinks. I remember sneaking back from Costa Rica with some coffee flowers to try and incorporate them into such a drink. We never found an effective way to use them, but it’s something that's bugged me since, over and over again.
So I asked our partners in Bolivia if they could harvest some flowers for us and see what we could do. This doesn’t damage the crop, because they are harvested just as they are about to fall from the tree, but it does involve lots of work (which is just one of the reasons why we love the people we work with).
The process begins after a coffee harvest when there’s normally a period of dry weather. During this time the coffee plant gets a little stressed because of the lack of water. Then the rainy season comes, which sparks the coffee plant into creating little blossom flowers. These flowers have one of the most amazing and powerful smells I have ever experienced (if you could make an aftershave from it then it’d be my smell of choice), and the appearance of these flowers marks the start of the process during which the coffee plant creates its cherries for our lovely coffee beverages.
These flowers come from Longberry trees at La Linda in Bolivia. Due to the many complications and challenges within the Bolivian coffee industry, many of the smaller farms we have worked with in the past are no longer producing coffee. Whilst this has created some challenges for us, it has had a much more significant impact on our exporting partners AgriCafe, who have been working with these growers for many years. As a result, they have decided to begin farming themselves, in an effort to demonstrate what can be achieved with the application of more modern techniques and a scientific farming approach.
Agricafe now manage seven farms, of which La Linda was the first to bear fruit. La Linda is known as The Seed Garden for the other farms in the Buena Vista project. Alongside this Caturra lot, the farm is producing Longberry, Catuai and Typica lots; it's also producing Java, SL28 and Bourbon, which are all new plantings in Bolivia. All the coffee has been picked by a group of seven specifically-trained female workers, and these flowers were also hand picked by them too - what an effort!
We played around with brewing it as a tea and, boom, we have a unique drink! Our hardworking partners in Bolivia spent a huge amount of time and energy collecting these beautiful little flowers, I hope you really really enjoy trying something that's really delicious and a little different.
Available in 50g sachets.
When brewed they produce a very sweet brew with a specific sweetness that reminds us of molasses, alongside delicate notes of cherry and apple blossom.
You brew these like a tea. A super tasty, delicious and unique tea. We made a brew guide to make sure it was nice and simple. Click on the 'Video Review' tab to see it, or click here to travel to the brew guide.
PLEASE NOTE THIS IS NOT COFFEE, THIS. IS. COFFEE FLOWERS!