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What is a Microlot Coffee?

What is a Microlot Coffee?

These days, when shopping for coffee, consumers are presented with a myriad of options and coffee jargon associated with identifying the variety, origin, or composition of the product. 

Coffee has evolved from being a strictly necessary morning pick-me-up to a complex and artisanal beverage, a massive world of diverse flavors and aromas waiting to be explored. While most people may be familiar with the general categories of coffee like Arabica and Robusta, there's a niche within this world known as "microlot coffee." This is the kind of coffee that excites both coffee nerds and open-minded enthusiasts alike. This article will explain what microlots are and hopefully persuade you to give it a try for your next purchase. 

Here We Go

Microlot coffee, in essence, refers to coffee beans that are meticulously cared for and sourced from a specific defined region within a coffee-producing area. These special selections are limited in quantities and often come from a single farm, a section of a farm, or even a specific lot within a farm. Oftentimes the lot is exclusive to a single coffee variety and processed using a method developed specifically for the microlot. The producers of these microlots give these selections extra attention and care to stimulate the development of their distinctive and unique flavor profiles.

coffee cherries in basket


What Does it Take to Produce a Microlot?

Love, so much love, and attention to detail! Microlot coffee beans are meticulously cared for throughout the production cycle. Producers focus on sustainable farming practices, high-altitude cultivation, and often use traditional, more labor-intensive methods. These conditions are ideal for the development of complex flavor profiles that are particular to each lot. 

For harvesting, skilled pickers hand-select only the ripest cherries, ensuring that only the sweetest and highest-quality beans make it to the next stage. Coffee cherries are then precisely processed; based on the producer’s experience and discretion, they may undergo different washing or drying methods. Producers choose between typical natural, washed, or honey-process methods or experimental methods like the use of extended fermentation to reach a desired final cup. The way the coffee cherries are processed has a significant impact on the final flavor. Natural process coffees tend to be fruitier, while washed coffees have a cleaner and more vibrant profile. Extended fermentation may result in coffees that are intensely acidic, almost juice-like flavors. Microlot coffee often highlights these processing differences.

Similar to different types of apples in the world, there are different coffee varieties (like Bourbon, Gesha, Pacamara, and Caturra to name a few) that have unique flavor characteristics. Even if you plant coffee in the same soil and same conditions, the varieties will vary in taste and experience. Microlot coffees often showcase these distinctions, allowing adventurous coffee lovers to explore the nuances of specific varieties. 

You can’t just grow any coffee in a small plot of land and call it a microlot, it has to have some key components that distinguishes it from the rest of the coffee being produced on the same farm. Just as wine is influenced by where it grows on the vineyard, coffee is shaped by the specific environmental factors of its growing region. This is called terroir, and takes in account factors such as soil composition, altitude, climate, and even the presence of nearby flora can all leave their mark on the beans. 

Transparency is also an important component with these limited offerings, each lot can be traced back to its precise location and even the specific section of the farm where it was grown. This transparency allows consumers to appreciate the uniqueness of each microlot.

V60 pouring coffee in clear mug


Microlots Our Way

In order to get the most out of these coffees and provide an exceptional experience the roasting process is equally important. These coffees are typically lighter in color and require finely calibrated roast times to feature their unique characteristics. These selections are also special because each microlot receives its own unique roasting recipe.

While microlot coffee is a treat for the palate, it is often a more expensive choice due to the level of care, attention, and resources involved in its production. At Mayorga we believe in providing great coffee at a good value, and not overpricing them just because they are rare. 

Microlot coffee focuses on uniqueness, quality, and the pursuit of the extraordinary. Whether you're a seasoned coffee nerd or a budding enthusiast, exploring microlot coffee is a delightful adventure in taste and discovery. If you’re ready to start the journey, these microlots will only be available to those who subscribe to our monthly limited release. Are you ready for the adventure? 

This piece was written by the person who will be roasting your exclusive limited release microlot coffees. Con amor, siempre - Eduardo, Director of Coffee, Top US Coffee Roaster.

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