[C]umbria’s speciality coffee roasters, Carvetii Coffee had a unique opportunity to meet one of their coffee farmers before receiving a new batch of coffee beans from Central America.
Fernando Alfaro, a fourth generation coffee producer from El Salvador, was in the UK to visit coffee roasters and find out more about what happens to his beans when they arrive in this country.
Carvetii was one of only two independent roasters specially selected to spend time with Fernando at their Roastery in Threlkeld. The team, led by Gareth Kemble and Angharad MacDonald carried out a cupping session giving him the chance to sample coffee beans from other countries whilst experiencing Carvetii’s style of roasting.
Coffee has been produced at Fernando’s family farm, El Carmen for almost 30 years and their 70 hectares of coffee are exported all over the world each year.
“As speciality coffee single origin farms, we’re very interested in how our product is managed by the roasters and how they sell it on to the consumer” said Fernando. “A typical customer in a coffee shop probably won’t appreciate what makes a coffee a speciality grade, so it’s amazing to see that, through their work, Carvetii are teaching people about our farms and what is behind the coffee they drink at home.
“I think the ideal thing would be improving coffee consumption at home and having this type of coffee every day. Instant coffee is quicker and easier to make but using something like a French press at home is probably the easiest way to have the best and nicest coffee every day…and cheaper than going somewhere like Starbucks!”
Finca Nazareth from Fernando’s farm in El Salvador will be available from Carvetii during October.
This Sunday 1st October is International Coffee Day, which globally celebrates the coffee journey, from the farms where men and women grow and harvest coffee, to the local shop where it ends up.
Here are some of Carvetii’s top tips on how to take the grower’s advice and enjoy speciality coffee at home:
It’s not the size that counts…
“Believe it or not, you really don’t need a big shiny expensive coffee machine like they have in all the top coffee shops to enjoy a good cuppa at home. Yes, there are some consistent capsule coffee machines out there and they do play their part in introducing more people to better quality speciality coffee, but how many just end up in a cupboard after the novelty wears off? Whereas the humble cafetiere or coffee press has never gone out of fashion, it’s both simple to use and really easy to clean, and even our espresso blend works a treat in it!”
It’s all in the water…
“Many people simply don’t realise how much the water can hugely influence how a coffee both brews and tastes. Filter jugs for the fridge use remineralising cartridges, which add small amounts of magnesium to the water. Trying these or even Volvic bottled water could be enough to improve your daily cup of coffee.”
Full of beans…
“To enjoy a coffee at its very best, buy it in bean form. It might seem like harder work to have to grind your own coffee but you’ll be rewarded for your effort. Freshly ground coffee tastes so much better and, if you work your way through the bag grinding only as much as you need each time, the quality remains high, as it won’t be degraded by oxygen.”
Carvetii will also be running a Home Barista workshop from their Roastery on Saturday 25th November to help people improve the coffee produced at home. For more information and to book, visit https://www.carvetiicoffee.co.uk.