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Matas de Minas is a specialty coffee-growing district, located in the south-east of Minas Gerais state, inland from Brazil's Atlantic coast. Matas de Minas are the Minas Forests, a dense, mountainous forest region that is home to the plantations of Andressa coffee, symbolized by the native forest puma.
Andressa coffee is farmed by small family growers at altitudes between 800m-1,200 masl, near Espera Feliz, using naturally sustainable methods. The mild climate and careful focus on preparation, yields an artisanal coffee, that is sweet in flavour, with a full-body. Its acidity is well-balanced and delicate, while its aroma is intense. The result is a cup altogether more sophisticated than the more familiar Minas coffee profile.
Most Brazilian coffee is grown on huge farms, built and equipped for mechanical harvesting and processing, maximizing productivity. The relatively flat landscape across many of Brazil’s coffee regions combined with high minimum wages has led most farms to opt for this type of mechanical harvesting over selective handpicking.
In the past, this mechanization meant that strippicking was the norm; however, today’s mechanical harvesters are increasingly sensitive, meaning that farms can harvest only fully ripe cherries at each pass, which is good news for specialty-oriented producers. In many cases and on less level sections of farms, a mixed form of ‘manual mechanized’ harvesting may be used, here ripe coffee is picked using a derricadeira – a sort of mechanized rake that uses vibration to harvest ripe cherry. A tarp is spanned between coffee trees to capture the cherry as it falls. With the aid of these newer, more selective technologies, there’s a growing number of farms who are increasingly concerned with – and able to deliver - cup quality.
After harvest, cherry is typically laid to dry in thin layers on patios. Under direct sunlight, cherry is layers on patios. Under direct sunlight, cherry is carefully monitored and turned frequently.
COFFEE GRADE: SC17/18 NY2/3
VARIETAL: Yellow Catuai and Mundo Novo
ALTITUDE: 800 to 1,200 masl
SUBREGION/TOWN: Espera Feliz
REGION: Matas de Minas, Minas Gerais
Cupping Notes: Aromas of chocolate and hazelnut. Flavours of cocoa, hazelnut and golden syrup. Red apple like malic acidity with a rich and round body.