The hybrid of coffee grown in Timor has some robusta strains in it, and while it doesn't hurt the taste of their coffee, it does give it quite a bit extra caffeine. Actually, the quality of Timor beans has been improving year after year, and it's to the point where there are some cool undertones in the various microlots being sold now. This one is from Ermera growing region. This batch is from a particular village called Aifu and boasts subtle undertones of dried cherry, caramel, tobacco. We sometimes roast Timor coffee extremely dark like an Italian roast, and it holds up very well.
This is a wet-hulled processed coffee, just like a Sumatra or Bali or Java, so you really can't take it light. The minimum roast is right at 2nd cracks, and it's not particularly interesting at that level. Hints of cherry, bright acidity, fairly clean, fairly sweet. But nothing I'd go back for a 2nd mug of. 15 seconds of 2nd cracks gets you closer. Not too complex, but nice thick body makes it a satisfying medium-dark roast coffee. But really, you want to take it 40 seconds into 2nd cracks. Roast it like a Sumatra. Get it smoky, dark. Now you have a Sumatra-tasting coffee with hints of spice and tobacco with just slightly less earthy, not quite as herbal as most Sumatras. But with the Sumatra shortage this year, this is a really good substitute. It is close enough to a Sumatra that you would be hard-pressed to guess that it wasn't one but the extra caffeine really gives you a jolt. And for the Italian roast fans, take it a full 60+ seconds of 2nd cracks and get a reasonably full bodied ashy oily coffee without overly bitterness (although by definition, and roast that dark will have some bitterness...)
This particular group of farmers are certified organic.
US Arrival January 2018
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