Passenger - Archival Release #15 - 9/15/21

Passenger - Archival Release #15 - 9/15/21

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    Release #15: Mario Moreno 2017

    Since the 2005 Cup of Excellence, the Santa Barbara region has enjoyed well-deserved international recognition as the source of many of the most interesting, complex, and delicious coffees in Honduras. Two key families have been at the heart of this regional fame: the Paz family, who owns San Vicente, the company responsible for milling and exporting the coffees from the region, and the Moreno family, a farming family who has championed specialty coffee and the benefits it brings and have encouraged many other producers in the region to begin producing specialty coffee over commodity coffee.

    The village of El Cedral is close to the jungle, and as such close to rain. This can make drying the coffees challenging, but it also makes the reward of drying the coffee well all the sweeter (quite literally in this case). The drying, combined with good plant genetics (the Pacas variety is fairly ubiquitous amongst the producers intentionally crafting specialty coffee in this region, but this lot happens to be Bourbon), climate (warm days and sometimes quite cold nights), and soil (volcanic) make for incredibly unique, complex and delicious coffees, unlike anything else found in Honduras.

    Seven Moreno brothers (Miguel, Mario, Jesus, Gerardo, Olvin, Mabel, and Danny) continue to honor the legacy of their father, Daniel Moreno, who started producing coffee in Santa Barbara back in 1963. While Passenger has proudly presented coffees from multiple members of the Moreno family since our start as a roasting company, Mario Moreno is the name that has returned to the Reserve Lot menu most often. This special archival selection from the 2017 harvest - carefully preserved in deep freeze storage since its arrival - was one of the first microlots from Mario's farm that Passenger purchased. We are absolutely thrilled to share a small amount of this delicious coffee once again, facilitating a fascinating contrast with the more recent 2020 Mario Moreno selection that is one of Passenger's current Reserve Lot offerings.

    Freezer Fridays

    The Freezer Friday archival release series provides a unique new opportunity to explore Passenger’s treasure trove of notable harvests from the past. As those familiar with our approach to green coffee preservation will already know, we have actively stored our green coffee in an off-site deep freeze facility since our start as a company, keeping the coffees that we purchase in pristine condition following arrival.

    While the majority of Reserve Lot coffees that we buy sell out within months of their first appearance on our menu, we have, since our start in 2014, saved small volumes of many of our most extraordinary coffees for future enjoyment. 

    Inspecting the harvest at Gesha Village Estates

    Selecting gems from the past at Passenger’s off-site freezer archive

    This year we will begin to make a few of these “greatest hits” available for purchase in extremely limited quantities. Each release will be announced through Social Media and limited to 1 per order.

    The archival lots that we will be releasing in this way are not only shining examples of plant genetics, terroir, and skilled processing, they also offer a unique nostalgic opportunity: to revisit our previous experiences with these coffees and acknowledge once again some of the true high-water marks of producers whose coffees we have been privileged to taste over the years.

    • 4.29.22 Release #23: Kanzu 2019

    • 3.10.22 Release #22: Worka Chelbessa 2020

    • 2.18.22 Release #21: German Córdoba 2018

    • 1.14.22 Release #20: Caballero Java 2019

    • 12.31.21 Release #19: Hacienda La Esmeralda 2019 - Dry Process

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