São Lourenço

On Friday, we left Poços de Caldas to go to an even smaller town called, São Lourenço, because the Brazilian National Barista Competition was happening over the weekend. Lucky for us, we had the opportunity to meet some of the barista competitors, taste their coffees and have a memorable weekend in São Lourenço.

We also managed to cup some coffees with another exporting company called Carmo Coffee. We managed to again find a diverse flavour profile from here in Brazil. Personally, I've never scored a coffee 90+ points, but on one of the tables, there was a coffee that achieved that score. It tasted like a Geisha varietal, very complex fruit flavours, high sweetness, heavy weight and changing complexities as it cooled. I was amazed to find out it was Yellow Bourbon - a very common varietal here in Brazil.

This Yellow Bourbon comes from a farm (fazenda in Portuguese) here called Fazenda Santuario Sul. After lots of questions regarding this coffee and how it scored so high, we were invited to visit and tour the farm! Yes please, that's right up our alley!!

Fazenda Santuario Sul has been in the Perreia family for over 100 years, and through the generations has been sectioned off into different farms, all still within one family. Santuario Sul is owned by Luis Paolo Perreia and, here, he has 32 different varietals of coffee planted in his 'garden'. The seeds for these plants have come from all over the world. There's 5 different types of Geisha from Panama, Nicaragua and Colombia, Yirgacheffe from Ethiopia, Teksik from Ecuador, Rume Sudan from Uganda, and most amazingly the original species of Yellow Bourbon.

Yellow Bourbon originates from here in Brazil and it is a natural mutation of Red Bourbon and Botocatu, first discovered in 1930. Luis Paolo was able to get his hands on some seeds from a seed bank here in Brazil. Thus, he has an absolutely amazing quality of Yellow Bourbon. We're always excited to find delicious coffees to share with you back in Canada, but this one in particular is something to write home about!! We should be able to lock down a washed and a natural processed offering of this amazing coffee.

As I'm writing this, I'm sitting in the back of a van bound for Sao Paolo. Sadly, our first Brazil trip has come to an end. There's always more to see, always more coffee to be found, more food to be eaten and more to be learnt, but we'll have to save all of that for next season. I'm going to get back to staring out the window at the green, rolling hills. Tchao tchao!

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