We are firmly in the landing time for the new crops from Central America. Some, like the Malacara A (El Salvador) and Telia Herbazu (Costa Rica), are already with us but July is when most of our coffee from Guatemala starts to land. And what a crop it is. We have old favourites from Capetillo and Santa Catalina already in and La Bolsa will be making a roaring comeback onto the counter in its original and decaffeinated state soon. We have talked before about how much we all like a great decaf and we have high hopes for this one.
Around this time last year, we were rearranging shipments and moving contracts into this year and beyond. Our coffees from Guatemala were some of the contracts that were delayed and shifted so it is with emotion that we welcome El Guatalon, La Bella, La Bolsa, El Zapote and Los Laureles II back onto the counter this year. We have some new arrivals too: La Bugambilia, Las Cortinas and Idolia.
Also arriving soon is a new-to-us coffee from Kenya – Thiriku. We are excited to see how the coffee lands and develops over the next few months.
In South America, the crop is just getting into full swing. The team at Carmo Coffees (Brazil) are preparing samples to send to us to taste from all our favourite farms. In Bolivia, Pedro and co from Los Rodríguez will be doing the same. Last year’s coffees from Bolivia were amazing and we have increased our contract with Agricafe, so we hopefully have them on the counter for longer next year. Keep a look out for the new crop from Bolivia which we hope will arrive in time for Christmas.
In Colombia it is a sobering story. The crop in Nariño and Southern Colombia should be starting to come through in abundance but there are serious security and safety problems, and the farmers are having difficulty getting their coffees to buyers. There are many protests against the government, the lockdowns, against the protests too. In difficult times like this fuel becomes scarce and expensive. We will do what we can to help the farmers we buy from but there is a very real problem with supply, and we will not be able to get enough coffee to send some to decaffeinate this year. We are hoping to have enough on the counter, but we don’t want any farmer to risk a delivery of coffee to a buying point if it is not safe to do so. In normal times we would be in Colombia now tasting the coffees and catching up with our friends there. This year we just hope the situation will calm down and they can get their coffee and other crops to market.
In our shops you will see we are still practising all our social distancing measures. We look forward to the update on The 19th Of July to see what changes we can make for the end of the month. For now, we are still outside-seating-only at our Covent Garden shop, and this won’t change until the distancing measures are completely relaxed. At our Borough Market shop you can now lean against a leaner to drink your coffee but please be mindful of keeping your distance from your fellow customers. We know it can be difficult to hear and be heard with the screens and the masks in the shops and we’re all very much looking forward to removing them! For added fun at our Borough Market shop we have road works outside – for anyone interested the gas main is being replaced.
That’s a little summary of where we are at here.
Until next time, thanks for your support over the last few weeks, we really appreciate it.