We fell in love with Diofanor Ruiz’ coffees when we had the pleasure of visiting his farm and tasting the fruit of his labour on-site. For our second collaboration with Diofanor, we have selected a special lot processed using the ‘black honey’ method.
‘Honey’ processing refers to the appearance of the coffee during the drying stage of this process. Diofanor first soaks the ripe coffee cherries in ceramic vats, allowing it to ferment, sweeten and soften, for 12 hours. The cherry skin is then peeled from the fruit. What remains – the beans in their parchment, covered with a thin layer of sticky fruit – is laid on raised patios in the sun to dry, and the sugars from the fruit soak into the beans, without the cherry skin adding its character. The drying process takes about 10 – 15 days, and requires close attention and hourly turning. A great honey coffee has sweetness and crispness in equal measure, embodying some of the traits of the natural process and some of the washed.
Black honey is achieved when only the skin is removed while preserving all of the coffee fruit – called mucilage – intact to dry onto the beans. The fruit becomes sticky and darkens as it dries, creating the ‘black honey’ effect. This process is relatively rare, as it takes up to twice as much work and labour as yellow or red honey methods which dry much faster due to the lower fruit content.
cherry, Chocolate, malt
Caramel, Chocolate, toffee