Panama - Benjamin De Dianous
Altitude: 1740 MASL
This gesha varietal was grown at 1740 masl by producer Benjamin de Dianous at Fatima, his farm in Boquete, Panama. It spent 91 hours in anaerobic fermentation - nearly 40 hours longer than the Pacamara varietal from Fatima we also have at the shop.
Benjamin De Dianous grew up around coffee in Boquete, as his father was a coffee producer. Benjamin has owned his 24-hectare farm since 1964, where he initially cultivated various vegetables.
Sandra and Greg went to Panama in search of incredible coffee to share with the Curiosity community and found some outstanding examples of why Panama coffee is some of the most coveted in the world. This is where they connected with Creativa Coffee District (CCD). CCD is a forward-looking Specialty Coffee Processor in the Chiriquí province in Boquete, Panama. They cupped a variety of Pacamara and Gesha micro-lots and fell in love with this gesha from producer Benjamin De Dianous’ farm Fatima.
Panama - Benjamin De Dianous - Anaerobic
from Creativa Coffee District
Creativa is a group of revolutionaries set to game the change in the coffee industry by weaving it together with the profound cultural impact of the world of contemporary art.
Art is a process that invokes change. Fermentation is our ART, and the mill is our canvas. We innovate with techniques that CHANGE the way we think about coffee, and how it is processed. Do you remember the old fashioned “fully washed”? Well, so do we. And this process can make some exceptional coffees. But, at Creativa, we believe that there is so much more. So, instead, we choose to work with controlled fermentation, slowly dried coffees, and other experimental processes that truly allow these unique coffee profiles to really stand out. That is what we bring to the specialty coffee market.
After the cherries have undergone their respective processes, we set them to dry either on raised beds or our patio. Not only the largest patio in Panama but also one that carries an immensely layered and cultural story. By continuing this legacy, we honor the past while looking to the future through the lens of creativity and innovation.
Our natural environment is scorching hot around harvest time. Believe it or not, on a hot summer day, our patio can reach up to 56º Celsius. It has been a big challenge to understand how to use the high temperatures of our environment to attain our quality standards. Yet in challenging one finds reward. The high ambient temperature of our patio works to halt the fermentation processes of each coffee once it’s reached its desired pH and Brix levels, adding another layer of consistency to our methods.
It is so hot in fact, the afternoon sun threatens to dry the cherry faster on one side than the other. To prevent this uneven drying, we move the cherry every two hours. Then, before night falls, we pile the coffee into small cherry mountains and cover them to prevent any risk of rain. In the morning, we spread them out and start it all again. The cycle continues for an average of 15 days.
Once our cherries reach 11% moisture level, they move from the patio and raised beds to begin the dry mill process.
We use our own dry mill facility in order to guarantee that our high-quality standards are upheld and our processing creativity shines all the way to the final cup. Our sorting equipment allows us to keep temperatures low by minimizing friction between the dried coffee and the machinery. The dried mucilage left on the cherries from our natural process is at risk of sticking when heated, which can cause a number of issues. By maintaining low temperatures, we ensure a smooth flow of coffee from start to finish.
Once the coffee is hulled, and the cherry skins are successfully removed, it is sorted by density. The dense beans pass onto the next step, while the lighter ones are separated, as they are often defective.
Next, the coffee is sorted by color. This is an additional step towards a quality export. The machine is calibrated regularly to ensure that our color specifications are met, as the creativity with our processes often imparts a reddish hue.
Then the coffee is ready for the last step. All of our coffees pass through a manual selection phase before being packaged for export. We enlist the help of the local indigenous community, the Ngäbe-Buglé, to oversee this critical process.
There’s a lot of work that goes into each batch of coffee we produce. Every single hand involved in this process is a passionate one. People who pour their passion and creativity into every detail are what moves us forward while innovating, changing, and improving along the way.