Onwards is our interpretation of the classic “house” espresso, but with a Red Bank twist.
With each iteration we will explore a different origin or process, and shine a light on the progressive and inspiring producers behind the coffee. In terms of cup profile, when selecting Onwards we are looking for a balanced and easy-drinking coffee that is clean, round and sweet in the cup.
Our first iteration comes from Coope Dota, a cooperative of farmers that Tom visited in March last year, based in Santa María de Dota, in the renowned Tarrazú region of Costa Rica. Coope Dota is a beacon of progressiveness and initiative in terms of agricultural practice, and responsibility to the community, and we couldn’t think of a more perfect coffee with which to launch our inaugural Onwards espresso.
We have selected a delicious honey-processed catuaí and caturra lot that delivers a classic, sweet, round and balanced cup with notes of treacle, fig and plum.
Coope Dota was established in October 1960 by a group of 96 producers, that has grown to represent over 900 producers today. Under the guidance of General Manager, Luis Madrigal, the coop has a seemingly relentless drive to innovate and improve in all areas.
The coop was the first coffee processor in the world to be certified carbon neutral back in 2011 (based on PAS 2060 - PAS 2050 norms certified by the British Standards Institution and certified by Carbon Clear). This was the culmination of numerous initiatives. Since 2001, these have included decreasing water consumption and eliminating water discharge into the river, using coffee parchment as opposed to firewood to fuel their dryers, implementing an energy management system that has resulted in a 40% decrease in electricity consumption since 2004, and introducing mandatory recycling.
It is also Rainforest Alliance certified in recognition of its efforts to protect biodiversity, to deliver financial benefits to its members, and to foster a culture of respect between its members and the local community.
This spirit was evident during Tom’s visit to Santa Maria de Dota last year. The town is stunningly situated right in the centre of the surrounding valley, and the coop is the beating heart of the community. It is clean and safe, and its inhabitants appeared healthy and happy. The mill itself was immaculate, and to Tom’s delight included a beautiful coffee shop with highly trained baristas who were able to showcase the coffees grown there in their very best light.
Perhaps surprisingly, this is a real rarity in coffee producing regions, but it is invaluable in terms of allowing the farmers and the community to take pride in the product of all their hard work, to understand how it is consumed around the world, and how they might improve it further.
We hope you enjoy this special inaugural edition of Onwards, and look forward to sharing more delicious coffees from visionary producers with you over the months and years to come.