Nossa Familia Coffee is one of the many roasters and cafés that I was unable to try on my whirlwind Portland trips last year, but better late than never, I always say. This coffee came to me by way of Crema.co, who asked me to try out their subscription service, which I found fantastic and will be writing a separate piece on for tomorrow. Stay tuned!
Nossa Familia Coffee has a cool backstory worth telling. The company was founded in 2004 by Brazilian exchange student, Augusto Carneiro. Augusto moved from Rio de Janeiro to Portland for engineering school. After a working for a few years in mechanical engineering, Augusto decided to quit his job and bring his family’s Brazilian coffee to the USA. Augusto’s family has planted coffee and worked the land in Brazil for over 100 years. After humble beginnings in 2004, Augusto opened a roasting facility in Portland’s Pearl District in 2012. In 2013 a successful Kickstarter campaign allowed him to open an espresso bar in the same building and Nossa Familia Coffee brings not only the family’s beans to us but also sources coffees from other regions.
The hardest part of selecting a coffee to test Crema.co’s system was all the great choices that were laid out in front of me! I narrowed my list down to a few including this microlot from Guatemalan farmer, Timoteo Minas. After reading the story about Timoteo and his work it was an easy choice! This coffee retails for $18.25 on Crema.co’s website and is still currently available. Timoteo Minas is a bricklayer with six children whose family lives in a concrete home he built with his own hands. When not working construction, Timoteo and his horse, Coyota, traverse the side of a volcano to get to and from his five acres of land near San Miguel Escobar in the Antigua region of Guatemala. This microlot consists of Bourbon varietal beans grown about 1500masl and it’s a washed coffee with tasting notes of, “Tangerine, strawberry, honey.”
Some of the recent Guatemalan coffees I’ve been drinking have been those classic chocolatey, super sweet sugar bombs, which I LOVE, but this one from Nossa Familia and Timoteo Minas is quite light and bright. I used my trusty notNeutral Gino pourover dripper with Kalita 185 filters and a total brew time of about 4:00 using a 1:15 ratio. The aroma right after brewing is super sweet and almost like a cup of hot chocolate, although the flavors are more light and fruity.I found this coffee to have a light, but silky mouthfeel. There is a hint of strawberry in the flavor, but I got it mostly in the immediate aftertaste after each sip as well as in the physical feeling of drinking this coffee. There is a touch of astringency on my palate with this, giving a dry finish and a sort of “tightening” feeling to my taste buds, not unlike the feeling I get when I eat a slightly underripe strawberry. Along with the feel of strawberry and hints of its flavor, there is a soft citric acidity like tangerine or clementine. As the cup cools, the strawberry flavor became more noticeable, again more in the “second half” of the sip and into the aftertaste. It’s not the same strawberry as you might find on an Ethiopian natural coffee, for example, and there is no ferment accompanying it, so it’s interesting to experience how two very different types of coffee can give two very different impressions of the same fruit!
This is a nice cup. The finish is a bit dry for me and it does decrease the drinkability a little, for me, but that’s an extremely minor nitpick for an otherwise bright and delightful cup of coffee! This would be a great late morning or after lunch pick-me-up! And now I have another roaster on my list whose coffees I need to explore more deeply! Happy day!