Our latest decaffeinated offering is another exceptional Colombian offering from La Serrania, Pitalito in the Huila region.
Colombia has become synonymous with the Sugar Cane Process (EA) in recent years as the "green" coffee is usually decaffeinated at the farm from which it is picked, reducing the carbon footprint and negating the need to decaffeinate it elsewhere. Not only is the process much more eco-friendly and traceable, but it allows us to get the best decaffeinated microlot coffee possible.
The bean undergoes structural changes in the decaffeination process and a different approach is required during the roasting process to bring out the best notes of the coffee. You may also notice our decaf is a little bit darker than our other speciality coffees. This doesn't mean we've over-roasted it - quite the opposite - after decaffeination the raw green bean arrives much darker in colour and with a slightly "earthier" odour, yet sweeter notes due to the decaffeination process.
All coffee from La Serrania is decaffeinated. It is grown along an isolated set of mountains within the central cordillera of the Andes that go through Pitalito, Acevedo, Palestina, Timaná, and Suaza.
This coffee represents the work of more than 50 producers who are committed to quality and excellence. La Serrania is carefully hand-sorted and processed at each individual farm, with special attention paid to the drying process to ensure consistency, uniformity and a clean cup profile.
La Serranía Decaffeinated is a natural process, ethyl acetate (Sugarcane) coffee, processed at the Descafecol plant in Manizales, on route to its Medellin before being exported. This represents a great achievement for carbon footprint, decaffeinating it in-country as opposed to being shipped for processing to another country. The decaffeination process at this plant uses ethyl acetate derived 100% from non-GMO sugar cane mixed with mountain water, together removing 99.7% of the caffeine present.
The beauty of the Natural EA process is that it helps preserve most of the original flavours of the coffee while adding fruity notes and some complexity to the cup. With notes of vanilla, berries and caramel. It has a soft acidity and a long aftertaste.
Sugar Cane Decaffeination Process
The coffee is first of all milled following a set of quality standards and parameters that is applied to all coffee at La Serrania washing station. Afterwards they will be transported to Manizales on route to Medellin, for decaffeination.
The coffee beans are then steamed once at the plant to open the bean pores, allowing points of contact all throughout the bean. Following this beans are rinsed for 10 hrs in Ethyl Acetate (E.A.), a natural compound derived from non-GMO Colombian sugarcane and mountain water. Then coffee beans are steamed again after being rinsed to remove any E.A. residues lingering, subsequently being dried using hot air to reduce moisture below 12%.
This process removes 99.7% of the caffeine naturally and in a carbon neutral way.