Pegasing Carbonic Maceration
Roast Level: Light Roast
Flavor Notes: Grape Soda, Ube Beignet, Chocolate Mousse
Returning for 2023! Vitner inspired from the pioneer in Indonesian coffee processing - cast aside your expectations for a Sumatran coffee because this flavor bomb is has super rounded chocolate and fruit notes overwhelming the traditional rusticness. Brew recommendations? This one will work for you any which way, just make sure to take your time and savor it.
This experimental natural/dry processed lot is one of a series that we were fortunate to be able to bring in this year, and represents an ongoing tidal shift in coffee across the globe with more and more producers, large and small, having access to the supplies and knowledge to experiment. Varietals once only found in certain corners of the globe are spreading further and faster than ever before, as are agronomic and processing advances through methods and technology. We put a bow on 2021 with some Philippine "nano-lots" that Ryan (Mostra Director of Coffee and Many Things) worked on with our friends at Kalsada in this vein, examples being the Sitio Belis Extended Anaerobic and Pigtauranan Anaerobic Natural.
Sumatran coffees have historically been divisive, and a major factor in that is the "wet hulled" processing method. Called "Giling Basah" in the native Bahasa language of Indonesia, the steps involved typically result in thick-bodied coffees with blunted acidity and some rustic notes that wouldn't be sought-after in any other origin but are expected and sometimes treasured in a Sumatra. The long and short (editor's note: roaster Nick can definitely go long on this...) is that in removing the coffee bean (seed) from the cherry, between the most common method (washed/wet) and the "ancient" method (natural/dry) there are innumerable variations. In most cases, once the mucilage (think "meat" of the cherry) is fully removed, the coffee is rested in it's parchment casing until it is in the lot-to-mid teens regarding moisture percentage.
Giling Basah is resultant of how the marketplace culturally differs in Indonesia. Instead of farmers selling cherries to a co-op, for example, the coffee is milled down to parchment quickly by the farmer and sold after only a few hours of sun-drying, typically 50% moisture. The mills use specialized machines to remove the parchment from coffee when its 20-30% and then dried completely bare, accelerating the timeline. Why? Climate is your main reason, with mostly partial sunlight, super-high humidity, and the rainy season makes drying the coffee for export a huge pain.
The finished product using newer processing methods can still result in typical Sumatran notes (jungle floor, tobacco, mulchy, sweet basil, to name a few) but as with most other origins it is becoming increasingly common to find a coffee sharply straying from what once typified it's region. In our eyes, these Pegasing lots are a roaring success in that regard.