What is Microlot Coffee?

Coffee has become a part of daily life for millions of people worldwide. An exceptional term you may have come across is 'microlot coffee.' So, what exactly is microlot coffee and why has it earned a reputation for being an exquisite and unique coffee experience? In this article, we will delve into the world of microlot coffee, its origins, the production process, and its impact on the coffee industry.

What is Microlot Coffee?

Microlot coffees are small batches of the highest quality coffee selections, often featuring unique flavor profiles and tasting notes. Microlots are cultivated in dedicated, specific plots. The cherries are harvested together and kept separate from other coffees growing on the same farm. This special attention allows for complete traceability and transparency in the process, resulting in a highly sustainable coffee of small production with exceptional tasting notes.

Coffee produced on each plot can vary based on various factors such as plot altitude, the number of shade trees, or the variety of coffee. Our farmers experiment by planting new varieties at different altitudes, sun exposure, and applying creative processing methods to create new coffee offerings. This method yields new coffee flavors that differ from other profiles produced on our farms.

The Process of Microlot Coffee

Selection: The microlot coffee process begins with the identification of the perfect location with ideal growing conditions. Selection includes factors such as altitude, soil type, shade, and surrounding vegetation. These variables play a crucial role in influencing the taste and quality of coffee beans.

Cultivation: Farmers carefully cultivate microlot coffee with meticulous care, following strict standards and paying attention to every detail. They often use sustainable and environmentally friendly agricultural practices such as organic fertilizers and pest control methods.

Harvesting: The beans are hand-picked when they reach their optimal ripeness, ensuring that only the best beans are selected for microlot production. This manual process ensures that beans are not damaged during harvesting.

Processing: Processing techniques play a crucial role in determining the final taste and quality of microlot coffee. Farmers choose from natural, washed, or honey processing methods, which remove the coffee fruit's outer layers to reveal the hidden seed or bean inside.

Selection and Grading: Microlot coffee grading standards are stricter than regular coffee. Beans are sorted by size, color, and density, ensuring that only the finest beans make it to the final lot.

Roasting: Due to its exceptional quality, microlot coffee requires extra attention to detail during roasting. Roasters often experiment with different roast levels to highlight the unique flavor profiles hidden within the beans.

Cupping and Quality Control: To further ensure quality, microlot coffee undergoes a cupping process. Expert tasters evaluate each batch based on its taste, aroma, acidity, body, and other unique characteristics.

Characteristics of Microlot Coffee

Different players in the coffee business, including farmers, cooperatives/processing centers, exporters/importers, coffee traders/roasters, etc., use the term 'microlot' in different ways, referring to various things. These include:

  • Coffee that is ecologically sound, treated with extra care, and offers an exceptional cup of coffee.
  • A significant quantity of coffee that has been meticulously screened and processed more thoroughly than larger lots.
  • Batch sizes, farm sizes, and per-pound prices for specific output quantities.
  • Originating from a specific part of a farm or at a specific elevation.
  • Varietal/cultivar (coffee type) like Blue Mountain, which is only available in a single lot.
  • A large amount that is collected and processed on the same day.
  • A particular lot that has been deemed outstanding in terms of cupping score and desired attributes.
  • Can come from a single farm or a group of farms in the same area.
  • Excellence standards with the best practices in farming methods, food processing, and storage protection.

Microlot coffee represents the epitome of quality, craftsmanship, and dedication to producing exceptional coffee beans. This unique and limited type of coffee allows consumers to experience and savor flavors, aromas, and textures that cannot be found in ordinary coffee. As microlot coffee gains popularity, it drives the coffee industry to innovate and pursue excellence, benefiting all involved in the process, from farmers to coffee lovers.