This lovely single-variety separation from Divino Niño offers a harmonious balance of mild chocolate, juicy stone fruit, and delicate floral qualities. Apricot and orange blossom honey on the nose precede flavors of plum, cherry, bittersweet cocoa, and oolong tea in the cup.
Composed of small deliveries of Pink Bourbon from multiple member farms of the Divino Niño producer group in Suaza, Colombia, this unique blend is the first Divino Niño selection to be presented on the Education Lot menu. Tasting this variety separation alongside Passenger’s Divino Niño Foundational lot (which is composed of multiple varieties) offers a fascinating opportunity to consider the impact of plant genetics in the cup.
Since the beginning of Passenger’s Foundational partnership with the Divino Niño producer group in 2018, we have had a focused goal: to increase our customer base for a wide representation of the different types of coffees that the group produces each year in the interest of offering a fair price for as meaningful a percentage of their total harvest as we can, across all quality grades, on an on-going basis.
As we begin our third successive year working with this coffee farming community in Suaza, Colombia, we can report excellent progress as our team continues to pursue these aims. Since 2018, Passenger’s Foundational Divino Niño offering has become a well-established menu staple, making it possible for us to buy the vast majority of the 86+ community blend that this group, which is growing and now counts nearly 50 farming families as members, produces each year. With the founding of our sister company, Necessary Coffee, in 2019, we created a home for the 84 and 85 point coffees produced by the group, roasting them in a more developed style to attract additional coffee lovers to the beautiful coffees of this region. And also in 2019, Passenger participated in the inaugural Copa Suaceña, a rigorously judged cupping competition organized by our friends and sourcing partners at Osito Coffee to identify and recognize the finest single-producer microlots produced by the Divino Niño community each year. Passenger proudly presented a portion of the top 6 lots from the competition on the Reserve Lot menu in the Spring of 2020 and we will be releasing our selections from the second Copa Suaceña later this Spring.
This particular release, a community lot highlighting the Pink Bourbon variety, is the first time that a coffee from Divino Niño has been presented on Passenger’s Education Lot menu. It represents another application of the general approach we continue to pursue: striving to develop a deeper sourcing partnership by presenting a diverse spectrum of beautiful coffees, across all areas of our menu, that offer our customers and guests an increasingly nuanced portrait of this highly accomplished coffee farming community.
The precise genetic lineage of the Pink Bourbon variety has, as far as we know, not been conclusively established. Some have posited that there are multiple ‘strains’ of Pink Bourbon that may be somewhat distinct from each other and offer significantly different cup profiles. What we can say, at least anecdotally, is that a healthy percentage of the most spectacular Colombian coffees we have tasted recently have been Pink Bourbons. At its best, the variety offers a deep sweetness, piquant acidity, and floral/fruity qualities that support initial evidence indicating that Pink Bourbon is closely related to some sort of Ethiopian landrace variety.
This community blend, composed of small amounts of Pink Bourbon that members of the Divino Niño producer group delivered to the Osito purchasing point, offers a unique opportunity to taste a Divino Niño variety selection alongside our Divino Niño Foundational lot (an example of a “field blend” or mix of different varieties). Enjoying both of these lots side by side affords a comparative exploration of plant genetics that is core to the vision of Passenger’s Education Lot menu.