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Processing the Process

Let's take a look at the different ways coffee seeds can be processed that make them unique.

 

Natural

The original traditional method for processing coffee - Once harvested, the coffee cherries are spread out to dry with the skin and pulp still attached to the seed. This process allows coffee seeds to absorb much more natural sugars and complex flavors from the cherry/fruit. Once the seeds have reached the desired level of dryness, the skin and remaining mucilage are removed at a dry mill.


Midnight Coal Company Coffee: Nueva Segovia, Nicaragua (83)
Nueva Segovia, Nicaragua (85)

 

Wet-Hulled

This method is primarily used in Indonesia and regions with very high levels of humidity. Special machines that are strong enough to remove the hull/husk are required for this process to ensure the proper condition of the seeds before they are dried. You'll notice an attractive bluish tint to the green seeds as they reach the appropriate level of dryness.


Midnight Coal Company Coffee: Sulawesi, Indonesia

 

Washed

The most common method for processing newly harvested coffee fruit - During this process, the cherry/fruit is removed completely from the seed. Afterward, the seeds are soaked for 12-72 hours at a wet mill. The coffee is then rinsed and set to dry. The seeds are left very clean with few remains of cherry/husk.


Midnight Coal Company Coffee: Jimi River, Papua New Guinea

 

Honey

Sort of an in-between process where the skin and pulp are removed in a very relaxed method, leaving some or all of the cherry mucilage on the seed during the drying process. This mucilage is reminiscent of honey because of how sticky it can be. Actual honey is not used during the process, and surprisingly enough, there typically are no actual notes of honey embedded in the flavor.


Midnight Coal Company Coffee: Nueva Segovia, Nicaragua (Honey Process)
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