The Electric Coffee Bean Experience

The search for kickass coffee

Archive for the category “South America”


Minas Gerais, Brazil 

What They Said:

Fazenda Barreiro was planted with coffee at the end of the 19th century by Agostinho José da Costa Junquira. For the last thirty years the farm has been managed by Francisco, Agostinho’s great-grandson. Francisco upholds the great coffee growing traditions of the area, in addition to trialling new methods and continually improving the quality of his coffee. Francisco carefully manages the balance between the working farm and preservation of local water sources and forest areas. There is a beautiful waterfall on the farm and its source river provides electricity and a great natural swimming pool for the children of the thirty families that live in the community. Our coffee from Barreiro this year is the Yellow Bourbon cultivar. This cultivar, combined with select picking of ripe coffee and careful processing using the pulped natural process, gives the Barreiro its unique flavours of cherry and chocolate. 

What We Said:

Wow! I floated home on the rich, chocolatey aroma wafting from my backpack. When connoisseurs talk about earthy notes, this is what they mean. Fantastic coffee that gives you a caffeine jolt without knocking off your head. The flavour remains intense right down to the final sip and lasts well on the palate. I picked this up at the Borough markets on a weekday. Saturdays, there is a huge queue. The lovely lady behind the counter gave me the option of whole beans or freshly ground for my espresso machine – another reason to choose local roasters over chain brands. Monmouth score very well here. 8 beans out of 10.


ASDA Extra Special Brazilian

origin of coffeeThe Pack Blurb:

Medium Strong/4 from the Minas Gerais region.

What they said:

This excellent Arabica coffee is produced using a method called “pulped natural”. This involves passing the freshly picked coffee cherries through a mill to leave a sticky sweet coating on the beans. These are then dried under tropical sunshine, producing a complex, rich and treacly flavour. The beans are then roasted on the darker side of medium making this an ideal coffee to serve after dinner or for those who enjoy a richer, fuller cup.

What we said:

Unsealing the pack was a real delight as I was hit by the treacly aroma promised by the pack. My nostrils sat up and paid attention. Could a supermarket branded coffee deliver? Downhill from there I’m afraid. The crema was poor, almost non-existent. The brew looked somewhat weak. I’ll grant that the barista can have something to do with it but I made it to my usual standards. The nose wasn’t too shabby. Definitely smelled like coffee, which is a start, right? Tasting was reasonable. Not as strong as I would have expected for a supposed darker roast. A touch of wood on the tongue without that unnerving sensation of drawing an ice cream stick over my teeth. Flavours did develop as the brew cooled down. A touch of cocoa and an earthiness that was unexpected and pleasant.


If I only had the brand to choose from, this would be the roast I’d choose. Other than that, save your money.

5 beans out of 10.

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