Sugar Glider Seasonal Espresso
- April 2018
- Written by : Black Cat Team
Sugar Glider, our syrupy-sweet seasonal espresso named for our favorite soaring, sap-seeking marsupial, is back!
The Sugar Glider joins a team of sweet-toothed superheroes from the Animal Kingdom we have selected as standard-bearers for our seasonal espresso menu because they embody our relentless pursuit of sweetness in the coffees we seek for our espresso blends.
Together with Honey Badger, Sapsucker and Fruit Bat, Sugar Glider is wired to search for sugars, which it finds most frequently in tree sap and the flower nectar. This arboreal airfoil uses its gift of glide to elude predators and take the shortest path possible to its next meal. The wide-eyed Sugar Glider is unquestionably cute, but don’t mistake it cuddly exterior for lack of courage: it launches itself fearlessly into the wind, which it rides by spreading its limbs to stretch the thin sail-like membrane between them. Sugar Glider gets almost two units of distance for every unit of drop, tucking its wings to turn along its treetop trajectories en route to its targets.
The three coffees that comprise this seasonal espresso deliver sweetness worthy of the Sugar Glider name: smallholder lots from three different groups of growers in Rwanda and Colombia, two origins that could scarcely be more dissimilar.
Coffee farmers grow different cultivars in Rwanda, where Bourbon and Bourbon selections predominate, and Colombia, where the most common varieties are the high-yielding Caturra and hybridized, resistant varieties Castillo and Colombia. Rwanda’s farms tend to be significantly smaller on average than Colombia’s, measured more frequently in number of plants than number of hectares. And growers in Rwanda tend to be linked to markets via coffee washing stations (CWS) that buy freshly harvested cherry while Colombian growers generally bring dry parchment to market individually or through a diverse array of farmer associations. But the growers behind this year’s Sugar Glider are united by their common commitment to quality.
Sugar Glider’s two Rwanda components are our current Imena and Zirikana single-origin offerings. Imena is the inaugural single-origin release from a group of smallholders on the shores of Lake Kivu near the Murundo CWS who have been loosely organized by our friends at Kivubelt Coffee into a collective known as People’s Farm. This edition of Zirikana comes from our long-time Direct Trade partners at Bufcoffee and their first CWS at Remera in the South Province.
The Colombia component comes from a group of 80 determined smallholder growers in the village of Sotará, Cauca. Over the past three seasons, we have been patiently building quality together with them and our partners at Banexport.
Together, these three components deliver butterscotch and dried cranberry sweetness the Sugar Glider would love, overlaid by notes of bergamot.